MLK celebration speaker emboldens Aiken community
Last Sunday an event was held in the USC Aiken Convocation Center to celebrate the legacy of civil rights activist, Martin Luther King Jr.
The collaboration between USCA and Aiken Technical College drew a large crowd, including special guests, committee members, student groups, vendors, sponsors, community members and children.
The event was marked by musical selections by the USCA Concert Choir and an array of prizes were given out to local school children who entered artwork and writing into a county-wide contest.
The keynote speaker was Patricia Russell-McCloud, a lawyer, bestselling author, motivational speaker and international business woman.
“I dare you! I double dare you,” she proclaimed, challenging the audience to fight obstacles, persevere and be creative in their efforts.
She revealed that her dedication and success are the result of years of experience, fighting barriers of racial and gender inequalities. She admitted that her drive to manifest the energy of King came from within.
“Leadership is not easy but it’s necessary,” said Russell-McCloud, adding that she believes the fight for those of every race and color is ever-present. However, she hopes that with every speech she makes, she will encourage more people to get involved with their community and use the talents they possess.
“It’s better to have it in education and not need it,” she maintained, “than to need it in education and not have it.”