MLK celebration Monday

Published 9:57 am Thursday, January 16, 2020

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The 2020 Martin Luther King Celebration, sponsored by the NAACP, will be held at 1 p.m. on Jan. 20 at Shiloh Baptist Church, 544 E. Depot St.

The keynote speaker will be Linda J. Sutton of Winston-Salem. The annual gathering at the square will begin at 12:15 before the march to Shiloh.

Sutton has been active in the community since the early 70s, starting out as a union organizer with the Communications Workers of America and special voter registration commissioner with the board of elections. Over the years, she has served Winston-Salem and North Carolina in many organizations.

She served on the N.C. Employment Security Commission for 13 years and has served on the boards of Neighbors for Better Neighborhoods and the Darryl Hunt Project for Freedom and Justice. She has served on the NAACP executive committee, as branch secretary and as political action chair. She is also the chair of the Forsyth County Board of Elections. In 2003, she co-founded the Winston-Salem Voting Rights Coalition, a grassroots organization of non-profit, non-partisan community groups, registering thousands of voters and engaging them in electoral reforms such as early voting, same day registration and campaign finance reform.

She has received numerous awards including the City of Winston-Salem Human Relations Commission Humanitarian Award, the Chronicle Newspaper Woman of the Year Award, Local and State NAACP Awards, the Urban League Community Leader of the Year Award, MLK Dare to Make A Difference Award, Church Women United, and many others.

Sutton retired from Bellsouth after 32 years and is a life-long member of Goler Memorial AME Zion Church where she has served the church in a number of capacities.