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Celebrate MLK’s legacy with annual breakfast hosted by MVNU, Kenyon

MOUNT VERNON, Ohio — Mount Vernon Nazarene University, Kenyon College and the Knox County community will come together for the 21st annual Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Celebration Breakfast: Out of a Mountain of Despair, a Stone of Hope. The breakfast will take place on Monday, Jan. 15, beginning at 9 a.m., at Foster Hall in Ariel Arena on the campus of Mount Vernon Nazarene University. The event is free and open to the public. 

The keynote speaker is Bishop Edward Cook, state bishop of Ohio North First Jurisdiction for the Church of God in Christ. With a lifetime of dedication to serving others, Bishop Cook was awarded the NAACP President’s Award in 1998 for his leadership in Toledo, Ohio. He was the president and board chairman of Covenant Youth Development Corp., an after-school program designed to help at-risk boys between the ages of 10 and 14, and their families, in collaboration with the Lucas County Juvenile Court. He was also a founding member of the Covenant Pastors of Toledo and the Covenant Community Development Corp., a local Christian Community Development Corp.

Guests will also hear from MVNU President Dr. Carson Castleman, Kenyon President Dr. Julie Kornfeld, Mount Vernon Mayor Dr. Matthew Starr and Gambier Mayor Mr. Leeman Kessler.

“This annual event is important to our community as it allows us to join together in a time of reverence and respect with a call to action that Dr. King’s life and legacy hold significance and value to spur us on and inspire us with his words to drive out the darkness with the light of love,” said Dr. Castleman.

“As we continue to confront issues of increasing complexity in the world, it’s more important than ever for us to come together to remember and reflect on Dr. King’s legacy. Each time we do so — engaging in meaningful, critical dialogue and seeking understanding from diverse perspectives — we honor his work and also commit to our own in realizing his vision,” said Dr. Kornfeld.

The annual event is sponsored by The MLK Legacy Committee, Kenyon College, and MVNU. To register, email

Kenyon, founded in 1824, is the oldest private college in Ohio and the first institution in the U.S. to implement the model of faculty members serving as academic advisors. With a curriculum rooted in the liberal arts, Kenyon students and faculty aspire to a nuanced understanding of the world and all who inhabit it. Kenyon is a top producer of Fulbright Fellows and ranks second among Division III institutions for fostering NCAA Postgraduate Scholars. Home to the Kenyon Review, one of the nation’s most esteemed literary magazines, Kenyon celebrates a rich literary tradition that promotes writing across academic disciplines.  

Mount Vernon Nazarene University is a private, four-year, intentionally Christian teaching university for traditional age students, graduate students, and working adults. With a 327-acre main campus in Mount Vernon, Ohio, MVNU emphasizes academic excellence, spiritual growth, and service to community and church. MVNU offers an affordable education both in-seat and online to more than 2,100 students from 42 states and nine foreign countries. 

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