PLANT CITY A guest speaker urged the audience to follow the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.’s legacy of courage inspired by faith at an annual breakfast honoring the slain civil rights leader.
Retired educator Dr. Gladys Wright said King called on “the supreme power of God,” during his time championing civil rights.
“Let Christ lead you as you go forth as soldiers of the (civil rights) movement,” Wright said.
The leadership breakfast featuring Wright was one of many events of the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Cultural Arts Festival, which began Friday and ends Monday. The festival was founded in 1986 by the Improvement League of Plant City.
Wright, in about a 20 minute speech, called on memories of King, a minister who spearheaded the civil rights movement until his 1968 assassination, and Rosa Parks, a black woman who in 1955 refused to give up her seat on a public bus to a white man in Birmingham, Ala. in defiance of segregation laws.
Wright said King and Parks both faced adversity and abuse but stood tall.
The breakfast concluded with the presentation of three annual awards by Improvement League President Liesta Sykes including:
Stanley Glover, veteran Marshall Middle School teacher and sponsor of the school’s Gentlemen’s Quest club, the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Leadership Award.
Dr. Maribeth Mobley, longtime educator, including former interim dean, at Hillsborough Community College’s Plant City campus, E.L. Bing Education Award.
Evalina Scott, retired Tampa General Hospital employee who is active in various ministries at St. Mary’s Missionary Baptist Church, where her husband is pastor, Sadye Martin Community Service Award.