Jefferson sees even greater King community gathering in 2021

Mikyle Bowie, a student at Springmill STEM Elementary, is congratulated by Mayor Tim Theaker after his speech about what the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. means to hm. Photo by Noah Jones, Richland Source

      Superintendent Stan Jefferson said the success of the inaugural Martin Luther King Jr. CommUNITY Breakfast sets the stage for an even larger event next year.

      “Monday’s inspiring celebration was the result of Mansfield coming together to honor the legacy of Dr. King while sharing the bond that unites us as one community,” Jefferson said. “I believe the groundwork has been laid for an even greater community event next January.”

      Hundreds turned out for the breakfast at Mansfield Senior High School. It was sponsored by Mansfield City Schools with support from its community partners, including the North End Community Improvement Cooperative, Ohio State University-Mansfield and North Central State College.

      The morning featured tributes to Dr. King by elementary and intermediate school students, remarks by several community leaders and a keynote address by Dr. Austin McCoy, 1999 Senior High graduate and current professor at Auburn University.

      The underlying theme of Monday’s program, Jefferson said, was Dr. King’s statement: Life’s most persistent and urgent question is what are we going for others?

      “Let’s take care of our kids. Let’s take care of our school community. Let’s take care of and take pride in greater Mansfield as we move forward,” Jefferson said. “The TY-Tyger roar is back, and it’s getting louder every day.”

      Board of education members joined Jefferson in unanimous praise of the breakfast program during Tuesday’s board meeting.

      “It was an outstanding program,” board president Renda Cline said, as she thanked the district’s community partners and the committee that planned the breakfast.

      “I am looking forward to many years of success. This is part of our history and our future. We are moving forward in a positive and progressive way,” she said.

      Gary Feagin, board vice president, lauded the students who described what Dr. King’s legacy meant to them.

      “They did a phenomenal job,” he said.

      Sheryl Weber and Linda Golden agreed. Mrs. Weber also praised the performance of the Senior High chamber choir, while Mrs. Golden cited the work of Winston Greene as a program emcee.

          Student speakers were:

           Mikyle Bowie, first grade, Springmill STEM

            Su'Nyce Whitner, second grade, Woodland

       Corey Lang III, third grade, Prospect, and Heaven Smith, third grade, Sherman

       Janessa Elliott, fourth grade, Spanish Immersion

       Abigail Secriskey, fifth grade, Malabar Intermediate

        Saneyah Saavedra, sixth grade, Malabar Intermediate  

      Also at Tuesday’s board meeting six donors were recognized for their support of the breakfast. They included:

      -- Park National Bank, $250

      -- Healing Hearts, $1,000

      -- Mansfield Interdenominational, $200

      -- Ohio Area Agency on Aging, $250

      -- Graham Chevrolet, $250

      -- Richland County Foundation, $1,000

      Joining Jefferson on the planning committee were Deanna West-Torrence, Laurence Rawls, Maura Treynor, Winston Greene, Donna L. Hight, Ms. Cline, Tiffany Knight-Mitchell, Brooke Miller and Brigette Coles.

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