Photo and story by Megan Cole / Contributing Writer
The MTSU Black History Unity Luncheon Committee and Intercultural and Diversity Affairs Center hosted faculty, students and honorees at the 22nd annual Unity Luncheon on Thursday.
Held in the Student Union Ballroom, the MTSU community honored five people and invited the great-great-grandson of abolitionist and social reformer Frederick Douglass, Kevin Douglass Greene, to speak.
Greene is an MTSU alumnus and has done multiple presentations on his family tree. Greene stated that this event was important for MTSU.
“Today we’re here to celebrate our history by remembering those of our past (and) recognizing those present here today for your contributions but also preparing the way for our future young leaders,” Greene said.
The 2018 honorees were Raymond Bonner, John Harris, Anthony Warren McAdoo Sr., Barbara Tuckson and Mary R. Patterson Watkins. The honorees were selected by the Black History Committee due to their personal achievements and impact on MTSU.
MTSU’s Generation of Purpose gospel choir sang to the attendees, and other members of the MTSU community spoke, such as President Sidney McPhee and Student Government Association President Courtney Brandon.
Charity Cole, an MTSU junior and a member of the Black History Month Committee at MTSU, explained why she believes unity events are necessary for MTSU.
“I think that this event is important for MTSU to host because we have such a large, diverse group of students and faculty,” Cole said. “It’s an event that highlights and also unifies the diverseness in the community. It brings us together.”
Mike Bowen, the coordinator of outdoor programs at the MTSU Recreation Center, attended the luncheon because he thinks that it is important to come together as a whole.
“I think this is important because it’s easy to get caught up in our own buildings and our own responsibilities, (and) events like this remind you that you’re a part of something bigger and greater than yourself,” Bowen said.
Chloe Brandon, an MTSU senior and SGA philanthropic coordinator, was assisting those who attended the luncheon by showing them to the correct tables. She said that she believes this event is important for the community and for Black History Month.
“I think it’s really good because all of the leaders in the community can come together and celebrate one purpose,” Brandon said.
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