Dr. Cornel West to keynote 2015 Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Holiday Observance and Sunrise Celebration

For Immediate Release
Fri, 10/10/2014


John L. Amundsen

Program Officer, Outreach and Communications

ALA Office for Literacy and Outreach Services

(312) 280-2140


CHICAGO – Internationally renowned intellectual Dr. Cornel West will keynote the 2015 Martin Luther King, Jr. Holiday Observance and Sunrise Celebration during the American Library Association’s (ALA) 2015 Midwinter Meeting and Exhibits in Chicago. The 2015 Celebration will be held from 6:30 to 7:30 a.m. on Monday, Feb. 2.

Cornel West is a prominent and provocative democratic intellectual. A current professor at Union Theological Seminary, he has also taught at Yale, Harvard and Princeton. The recipient of more than 20 honorary degrees, he has written many important books, including "Race Matters" and "Democracy Matters." He appears frequently on "Real Time with Bill Maher," "The Colbert Report," "Democracy Now," CNN, C-SPAN and other national and international media. He lives in New York City. Dr. West’s participation is generously made possible by Beacon Press.

The 2015 Sunrise Celebration will bring together leaders from across the association, including 2014-15 ALA President Courtney Young and ALA Executive Director Keith Michael Fiels. Featured readings will include selected passages from the works of Dr. King.

Coffee and tea will be served. Attendance is open to all attendees of the 2015 ALA Midwinter Meeting. For more information, please visit www.alamidwinter.org.

The ALA Social Responsibilities Round Table (SRRT) is a unit within the American Library Association. It works to make ALA more democratic and to establish progressive priorities not only for the association, but also for the entire profession. Concern for human and economic rights was an important element in the founding of SRRT and remains an urgent concern today. SRRT believes that libraries and librarians must recognize and help solve social problems and inequities in order to carry out their mandate to work for the common good and bolster democracy. SRRT’s main website is hosted atlibr.org/SRRT.

The Black Caucus of the American Library Association (BCALA), an affiliate of the American Library Association, serves as an advocate for the development, promotion and improvement of library services and resources to the nation's African-American community and provides leadership for the recruitment and professional development of African-American librarians.  To learn more about BCALA, please visit www.bcala.org/

Beacon Press is a 160 year old independent nonprofit publisher of books on social change, history, religion, the environment, science and society. Its mission is to promote freedom of speech and thought; diversity, religious pluralism, anti-racism and respect for diversity in all areas of life.  Beacon is partnering with the Estate of Martin Luther King Jr. in publishing "The King Legacy," a series of new  editions of previously published King titles as well as new collections of  Dr. King's writings, sermons, lectures, speeches and prayers, each with new introductions by leading scholars.  To learn more about Beacon Press and The King Legacy, please visit www.beacon.org or www.thekinglegacy.org.