2023 Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Poem/Video Contest

YONKERS – Yonkers Mayor Mike Spano and Superintendent of Schools Dr. Edwin M. Quezada launched the 2023 Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Poem/Video Contest. This year’s theme, Black Resistance, takes a look at how African Americans have fought repression from America’s earliest days.

“Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. is notably remembered for his persistent leadership and spreading inspiration through his speeches and writings,” said Mayor Mike Spano. “It is our responsibility to accept the torch of change and continue to spread Dr. King’s message of nonviolence and equality to new generations. Each year, I’m excited to launch this contest in remembrance of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and witness how students are able to express their interpretation of his lasting message.”

Mayor Spano will select one poem from grades 1-4, one poem from grades 5-8 and one video from grades 9-12. The winning poems and video will be displayed at Yonkers City Hall and online for Yonkers residents to enjoy. Winners will be presented a certificate from Mayor Spano and will be asked to present their work at the City’s Annual Black History Month Celebration at Yonkers City Hall on Friday, February 24, 2023 at 6:00 pm.

“The relevance of Dr. King’s universal message for equity, human dignity and peaceful coexistence is as powerful today as it was over half a century ago,” noted Superintendent of Schools Dr. Edwin M. Quezada. “In 1964, Dr. King was recognized as a champion for civil rights earning the Nobel Peace Prize nonviolent resistance to achieve equal rights for Black Americans. Every occasion that we, as a community of learners, can encourage young people to reflect on his work and put their voice onto Dr. King’s message provides an opportunity for future civil rights leaders to begin their personal journey.”

The Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Poem/Video Contest is open to all primary and secondary Yonkers students; only one poem and video may be submitted per student. Guidelines and specifications for the contest can be found at https://www.yonkersny.gov/mlk.

Poems and video submissions are due February 14, 2023 and may be emailed to contest@yonkersny.gov or sent by mail to MLK, Jr. Contest, Mayor’s Office, City Hall, 2nd Floor, 40 South Broadway, Yonkers, NY 10701. Winners will be selected by the Mayor’s African American Advisory Board and will be notified on February 17th. For questions regarding the poem/video contest email Dwanita Crosby at dwanita.crosby@yonkersny.gov.

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