Arizona State University Martin Luther King, Jr. 2017 Celebration

Martin Luther King, Jr. 2017 Celebration

Martin Luther King, Jr. 2017 Celebration

The mission of the ASU Martin Luther King, Jr. Committee is to celebrate the legacy and the tenets set forth by Dr. King and his life examples of servant leadership. Servant leadership is a practical philosophy which supports people who choose to serve first, and then lead as a way of expanding service to individuals and institutions.

Servant-leadership encourages collaboration, trust, foresight, listening and the ethical use of power and empowerment. The ASU Martin Luther King, Jr. Committee encourages the continuation of Dr. King's legacy all year long.

View a video segment from PBS' Arizona Horizon program featuring some of the 2017 student essay/bookmark winners.


The Celebration

Arizona State University will host its 32nd Annual Martin Luther King, Jr. celebration in January, 2017. Tributes and recognition of Dr. King and the achievements of the civil rights movement have been celebrated at ASU since long before the creation of a state holiday in Arizona. A highlight of the celebration is the recognition and awards ceremony for the Arizona K–12 students who are winners of the statewide essay-poster contest. A student rally, children's march on the West campus and other events are also held.


MLK Day of Service
January 14, 2017

Join ASU MLK Celebration Committee and Changemaker Central in honor of Martin Luther King, Jr. by volunteering in your community. Transportation provided for ASU students. Register now at: Information: 480- 965-0305.

MLK Holiday
January 16, 2017

Offices and classrooms on the four ASU campuses are closed to observe the Martin Luther King, Jr. holiday.

March on West
January 18, 2017

Everyone is invited to join the MLK March on West and experience the reenactment. The event is free and open to all - students, faculty, staff and community members. The march starts at the Paley Gates in front of campus and ends in the Sands/Kiva Courtyard. Visitor parking on campus costs $3 per hour. For more information, please check out our website.

Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Breakfast Celebration
January 19, 2017

For community members, students, winners of the poster-essay contest and their parents, teachers and principals. By invitation. Information: 480-965-5566.

2017 Breakfast Celebration
Photos by Tim Trumble

MLK Student Rally and Student Organization Fair
January 19, 2017

On North Stage Memorial Union and Hayden Lawn. Come celebrate the legacy of Martin Luther King, Jr. and servant leadership. We will take you on a journey of what it means to be a servant leader through 10 characteristics, we will also share inspirational words of our country's servant leaders and introduce the 2016 Servant-Leadership Awardee. You are in for a transformative treat!

11th Annual, Peace Luncheon
February 8, 2017

The Polytechnic campus in conjunction with the Council of Religious Advisors (Poly CORA) and Educational Outreach and Student Services (EOSS) It's a celebration where different faith groups come together to talk about how faith and beliefs help to attain peace on a local, national and global level. RSVP's are required and you can send yours to, Union Ballrooms.


2017 Contest Winner Media


2017 Essay form
2017 Poster/Bookmark form

2016 Winning Bookmarks and Posters
2016 Winning Essays



Text to the “I have a dream” speech
PBS's “Citizen King”
Stanford University's Martin Luther King, Jr. Research and Education Institute
Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. — National Geographic Kids
Day of Service


“The Autobiography of Martin Luther King, Jr.” by Martin Luther King Jr. and Clayborne Carson

“A Testament of Hope: The Essential Writings and Speeches of Martin Luther King, Jr.” by Martin Luther King and James M. Washington

“Becoming King: Martin Luther King Jr. and the Making of a National Leader.” by Troy Jackson PhD and Clayborne Carson


Speeches by Dr. King
MLK on Nonviolence
MLK, Jr. Remembered
“We Shall Overcome” audio with images


Lattie and Elva Coor are the faces of change.

2017 Communitee Servant-Leadership Awardee

Lattie F. Coor, President-Emeritus and Ernest W. McFarland Arizona Heritage Chair in Leadership and Public Policy at Arizona State University, is chairman and CEO of the Center for the Future of Arizona. For the past 26 years, he has served as a university president, first at the University of Vermont from 1976 to 1989, then at Arizona State University from 1990 to 2002. Before becoming a champion for education, Lattie graduated with high honors from Northern Arizona University and earned his Ph.D. in political science from Washington University in St. Louis, Missouri, where he later held faculty appointments and served as university vice chancellor.

Lattie received the Anti-Defamation League's Jerry J. Wisotsky Torch of Liberty Award in 1994, the Whitney M. Young, Jr. Individual Award from the Greater Phoenix Urban League in 2000, the American Academy of Achievement Golden Plate Award in 2000 and both the American Jewish Committee Institute of Human Relations Award and Center City Starr from Phoenix Community Alliance, in 2001. He was also honored as Valley Leadership Man of the Year in 2005.

Elva Coor is a 5th generation Arizonan. While Coor held roles in government and political activities at the local, state and national level, she also founded a business which she managed for 20 years, and founded the Arizona Chapter of the National Association of Business Women. Elva has served on boards for organizations including the Arizona Historical Society, AWEE, Charter 100 and the Life Development Institute. She has also volunteered at the Phoenix Art Museum and other organizations.

After selling her business and marrying Lattie, she founded the President's Community Enrichment Programs at ASU which aims to unite the university with its surrounding community. Elva also co-founded Building Great Communities, and founded an organization meant to increase the graduation rate of African American students at ASU. Later, she headed the effort to save Justice Sandra Day O'Connor's home from demolition. This experience inspired Lattie, to create a project called SpeakOut AZ, through The Center for the Future of Arizona, designed to increase civic participation throughout Arizona and include civics curriculum in schools. She was also honored as Valley Leadership Woman of the Year in 2015.

Her years of working in the political arena, business, academia, and nonprofits led her to value a well-informed and engaged electorate. The success of our great country depends upon providing every child with a good start and great education that prepares them for college, careers and their lives. Our political system is dependent upon that kind of success, and is dependent upon each of us being involved to help millions of people emerge from poverty.

Amber Poleviyuma is the face of change.

2017 Student Servant-Leadership Awardee

Read Amber's MLK student rally address.

Amber Poleviyuma is a community health student at Arizona State University's College of Nursing and Health Innovation. Her leadership and volunteerism efforts aimed toward increasing representation and awareness for Native American communities has impacted Arizona State University students and individuals in the surrounding community.

Inspired by her family, members of the Hopi tribe in northern Arizona's Moenkopi village, Poleviyuma aims to use her research to affect policy. In accordance with the Native American values of community and selflessness, she hopes to make a difference in the community, and expand communication and understanding across racial barriers. While Poleviyuma is interested in addressing a wide variety of issues including environmental, government and health issues, she is especially focused on reducing the number of youth suicides on Native American reservations through culturally relevant preventative programming.

In 2014, she worked with the Center for American Indian Resilience to conduct research for the Native American Cancer Prevention project, which explored the experiences of Native American cancer patients with healthcare providers. She helped found Native Americans for Academics, Success and Unity, an ASU club meant to help Native American students reach their academic goals while engaging with the community. Poleviyuma also worked with the ASU Tribal Nations Tour to reach out to Native American students throughout the state and inspire and encourage these students to pursue a college degree upon completing high school.

She is the vice president of the Tau Chapter of Theta Nu Xi Multicultural Sorority, Incorporated, and worked with the Moenkopi Youth and Family Life Enrichment Program to provide youth programs and family events for the residents of her village. She said Martin Luther King Jr. stood up for people who couldn't stand up for themselves, and she hopes to do the same. She leads by example to create greater understanding among different peoples, and in this way, hopes to show that these issues aren't just Native American issues–they're shared issues.