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NEWS | Jan. 24, 2023

JBAB honors MLK legacy

By Staff Sgt Nilsa Garcia Joint Base Anacostia-Bolling Public Affairs

Each year the Department of Defense joins the nation in honoring the life and legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
In celebration of Martin Luther King Jr. Day, a U.S. federal holiday marking the birthday of King Jr., the Defense Information Agency hosted Dr. Stephon Ferguson on Jan. 12, 2023, at Joint Base Anacostia-Bolling.
Ferguson travels throughout the nation delivering the powerful words of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. to help reinvigorate King's dream by not only delivering King's words, but by educating people about his life, philosophy and teachings.
“We were honored to host Dr. Ferguson, whose powerful and stirring reenactment almost placed us on the Mall on that important day 60 years ago,” said John Perroots, director of Defense Debriefing Service at the DIA. “The overwhelmingly positive feedback from the DIA community worldwide exceeded our expectations as we strived to honor Dr. King’s legacy with the event.”
Members in attendance were not only able to witness his provoking renditions but had the opportunity to connect with Ferguson and participate in an interview with Dr. Harrington.
“I love what I do,” said Ferguson. “I believe the work of Dr. King played a pivotal role in the way people think and to be able to recreate those words in today's society and to be a part of something that makes a difference in people's lives is incredible. I always feel at home speaking with government agencies as a military veteran myself. The work of the intelligence community is very powerful, and it was a great experience speaking with them.”
The event also featured a performance from The United States Air Force Band member Tech. Sgt. Michael Aiello. Aiello sang the national anthem along with the song "Lift Every Voice and Sing," widely considered ‘'the Black national anthem’’. Written by James Weldon in 1899, the song lyrics subtly spoke out against racism and was embraced as a powerful symbol of solidarity against oppression.
Today, uniformed members and civilians throughout the DOD continue to keep King’s dream alive through engagement in public service and promote peaceful social change. Dr. King’s unfinished movement toward equality can be achieved by our united efforts for a better tomorrow.