Birmingham, Ala., mayor to speak at April 7 King remembrance

Submitted by Illinois Commission on Diversity and Human Relations
Updated 1/15/2018 8:04 PM

The Illinois Commission on Diversity and Human Relations will hold the 50th annual Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Remembrance Dinner on Saturday, April 7. It will mark the 50th anniversary of the death of the civil rights activist who was shot and killed by James Earl Ray on April 4, 1968, while standing on the balcony of the Lorraine Hotel in Memphis, Tennessee. Since that time, the commission has sponsored a tribute to him to ensure that his life and work are never forgotten.

The confirmed keynote speaker is the Honorable Randall Woodfin, the mayor of Birmingham, Alabama who was instrumental in defeating Roy Moore who recently lost his bid to become a United States Senator.

The City of Birmingham has a historical relationship to the life and work of Dr. King. Birmingham is the city in which Dr. King, while incarcerated in a Birmingham jail, wrote his famous "Letter from a Birmingham Jail." The city gained international condemnation when the KKK planted a bomb in the 16th Street Baptist Church, killing four young black girls who were attending church service. And, it is the city where Dr. King planned and executed many of his civil rights initiatives to end apartheid in the United States. Mayor Woodfin continues the work started by Dr. King in Birmingham.

Mark Saturday, April 7, on your calendar and plan to join them at the Marriott Hotel in Hoffman Estates. Holding the dinner in the northwest suburbs rather than in the city of Chicago is a return to the area in which the dinner was born in 1966, 50 years ago. Invitations will be sent out in February. For more information on the Illinois Commission on Diversity and Human Relations, visit

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