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Nominations open for King Leadership Award

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Dr. William J. Barber II

Dr. William J. Barber II

Nominations are now being accepted for the Martin Luther King, Jr. Leadership Award, which was established in 2009.

The purpose of the award is to recognize leadership in and commitment to building community, enhancing diversity, and working for justice.

The winner will be honored at the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Community Celebration at 7 p.m. Monday, Jan. 18. It will be virtual this year.

This award recognizes community members whose leadership include the following:

  • Efforts are directed toward creating tangible, permanent and/or systemic positive change in the Greater La Crosse Area
  • Efforts are focused on issues of social justice, equity, diversity and inclusion, unearned privilege (may include other justice issues that mirror Dr. King’s work, e.g., race-equity, anti-poverty, peace, nonviolence).
  • Efforts work to empower and impact the next generation.
  • Efforts include devoting personal energies beyond one’s “paid position.”
  • Efforts to create positive change outside of the Greater La Crosse area.
  • Any additional considerations or contributions.

The deadline for nominations to be received is Dec. 2. To request nomination materials, contact the Selection Committee at

The featured speaker at the event is Dr. William J. Barber II, who currently sits on the National NAACP Board of Directors. From 2006 to 2017, he served as president of the North Carolina NAACP.

He is the chief architect of the “Forward Together Moral Movement,” which has been called the “New Civil Rights Movement.” On Feb. 11, 2017, he led over 80,000 people on the largest moral march in North Carolina history.

Previous recipients of the award are not eligible for nomination. They are:

  • Roberta Stevens (2009)
  • Thomas Harris (2010)
  • Andrea Hansen (2011)
  • Maureen Freedland (2012)
  • James Parker (2013)
  • William Coleman & Dempsey Miller III (2014)
  • Barbara Stewart (2015)
  • Nahoua “Tony” Yang (2016)
  • John Medinger (2017)
  • Nathaniel “Nate” Coleman Jr. (2018)
  • Shaundel Spivey (2019)
  • Tracy Littlejohn (2020)

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