Martin Luther King Jr

Mark Turek / Ocean State Theatre

February being Black History Month the Ocean State Theater in Warwick has brought back a 1987 play, “The Meeting.” African-American playwright and screenwriter Jeff Stetson brings together two major leaders who had very different ideas about improving the life and times of their fellow black Americans.

Dr. King, of course, developed a non-violent strategy. A minister with a Boston University PhD, he aimed to confront racism and violence strongly but without turbulence.

John Bender / RIPR

As many take a day off for Martin Luther King Jr. Day, some are spending the day doing service projects.  A group of students in Providence celebrates with art.

In the gym at Martin Luther King elementary school, dozens of elementary school students are screen printing t-shirts, painting murals, and jewelry painting.  It’s part of the nationwide “day of service” program.  More than 100 Rhode Island School of Design students are working with the kids on their projects. 

John Bender / RIPR

Elected leaders and state officials celebrate Martin Luther King Jr. Day with events across the state.  Many will attend a celebration at the Ebenezer Baptist Church in Providence this afternoon.  NAACP Providence director Jim Vincent said he wants to see those leaders hire more staff of color.  “25 percent of Rhode Island is communities of color.  Those staffs don’t have to exactly mirror the population that, but they should somewhat, so that people can see demonstrated leadership; we know that you’re here, we hear you, and we want to work on all these problems together. 


Today is the annual Martin Luther King Jr., holiday. RIPR political analyst Scott MacKay ponders what we can do to advance King’s legacy in Rhode Island.

The great civil rights leader’s legacy will be celebrated across  Rhode Island today in song, sermon and remembrance.  Voices will echo with the strains of James Weldon Johnson’s `Lift Every Voice and Sing’ and that iconic anthem of the civil rights movement, `We Shall Overcome.’


Rev. Bernard Lafayette Jr., a leader in the civil rights movement, will speak at the University of Rhode Island Tuesday.

Flo Jonic / RIPR

August 28th marks the 50th anniversary of the March on Washington. Best known for Martin Luther King’s “I have a dream” speech, it was also a pivotal moment in the history of the civil rights movement.

Rhode Island Public Radio’s Flo Jonic talks with a Rhode Islander who was one of the quarter-of-a-million people there.

Monteiro went on to work as a body guard for Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. on the Selma to Montgomery march. He describes the slain civil rights leader as a quiet man who enjoyed a good joke.

Two of the nation’s leading African-American intellectuals will be speaking at Brown University and  the University of Rhode Island.

URI will host Charles Ogletree on Feb. 5. Ogletree is a nationally-known Harvard University Law School professor and longtime mentor and adviser to President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama. Both the Obamas were Ogletree’s students at Harvard. Ogletree is an expert on criminal and civil rights legal issues.

Catherine Welch

(PROVIDENCE, RI) Hundreds gathered Monday morning in Cranston for the annual Martin Luther King Jr scholarship breakfast. The crowd joined hands and sang “We Shall Overcome” as they remembered the life and works of Dr King.

It was the 30th annual breakfast and during the event 27 scholarships were handed out. Rev. Sammy Vaughan says this is an appropriate way to remember the life and legacy of Dr. King.

“And we’re here today to remember a man who was such a great character and such a great influence on so many people and so many places in the world,” says Vaughan.