Family and Youth Opportunities Division (FYOD), Inc. presents the 6th Annual Martin Luther King, Jr. Celebration.
The event was held on Saturday, January 13th in the Flamingo Bay Ballroom at the Isle of Capri Casino. The well attended Clarksdale event included talks on Martin Luther King’s life and legacy, a look at current and future civil rights, and awards to honored Citizens.
The celebration was led by retired Chief Financial Officer of Coahoma Opportunities Inc., Mrs. Emma Simpson with an invocation from Rev. Joe Williams of Sunshine Baptist Church in Clarksdale.
Isle of Capri General Manager. Derrick Madison, greeted the crown, many of whom braved icy road conditions to attend the celebration.
After an introduction by Dr. Marvin Hogan, the guest speaker was Dr. Beverly Wade Hogan, President of Tougaloo College in Jackson, MS. Highlighting Dr. King’s remarkable contributions, and often quoting him as well, Dr. Hogan’s speech focused on a positive path toward a unified future. The section of her talk that we are “all Americans” received notable enthusiasm and applause.
Event awards were presented by the CEO of Family Youth Opportunities Division, Dr. Mary Francis Dear-Moton. Among the numerous enthusiastically given awards went to Mrs. Dorothy Jean Key(the longest FYOD board member), Mr. Archie Buford (coordinator of FYOD parades for the last 5 years) and to Mr. Samuel McCray, in honor of his FYOD partnership for the last 5 years.
Also receiving awards were Coahoma County Tax Assessor and Collector, Hattie Shivers and Paul Wilson of radio station WROX.
Among event attendees were Mississippi State Legislator Orlando Paden, Lisa Fisher from Mayor Chuck Espy’s office, Coahoma County Supervisor Johnny Newson. Gifts were given to the event from the Clarksdale Mayor and Commissioners, Coahoma County Administrator Daniel Vassel and from former City of Clarksdale Commissioner Buster Moton.
FYOD Board Officers are: Dr. Mary Francis Dear-Moton (CEO/President), Mrs. Amanda Dear-Jones (Vice President), Ms. Jasmine Daniels (Secretary) and Mr. Vincent Jones (Treasurer).
The FYOD Board of Directors are: Mrs. Clara Sims (Chair), Mr. Curtis Kemp (Vice-Chair),Mrs. Dorothy Jean Keys (Secretary), Mrs. Brendalyn Bell-Sculark (Assistant Secretary) and Mr. Carl Davis (Treasurer).
FYOD Advisors are: Mr. Donald Clark, Mr. Charles White, Former Coahoma County Sherriff Andrew Thompson and Attorney Sandra Marshall. FYOD staff is Mr. Archie Buford (Division Manager), Rev. Jimmy Parker (Director of Pre-Release Program) and Dr. Phyllis Hammond (LCSW Consultant).