Cleveland Public Library hosts its 35th Annual
Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Commemorative Ceremony, honoring
150 Unsung Heroes.
is honoring the heroes among us—teachers, community advocates,
entrepreneurs, students, and volunteers; people who selflessly
contribute to their neighborhoods every day and often go
unnoticed or without praise.
On Monday, January 20, 2020, Cleveland Public Library is
recognizing 150 Unsung Heroes in the community at the
35th Annual Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Commemorative
at 1:00 p.m. at John Hay Campus High School Auditorium located
at 2075 Stokes Boulevard near University Circle. The theme is
Let Freedom Ring.
During the ceremony, architect and entrepreneur Robert Madison
will receive the 2020 Cleveland Public Library
Drum Major for Change Award. The honor
to an individual who fights for equality and the greater good of
Madison is the first African-American architect in Ohio. During
his six-decade career, Madison designed buildings in Northeast
Ohio and across the world. His work includes the Louis Stokes
Wing of Cleveland Public Library, the U.S. Embassy in Dakar,
Senegal, and an office building in Glenville for black doctors
who weren’t allowed to practice in area hospitals in the 1960s.
Despite challenges and discrimination, Madison has continued to
pave the way for future architects and encouraged people of all
races and ethnicities to work together to design and create
beautiful buildings for all.
“Robert Madison truly embodies what Dr. King meant to be a drum
major for change. Mr. Madison is a trailblazer for diversity and
inclusion in the architecture and design industry and is an
inspiration to many in Northeast Ohio and around the globe,”
Chief Equity, Education, and Engagement Officer at Cleveland
MetroHealth System President and CEO Dr. Akram Boutros is
the keynote speaker. Other program highlights include
performances by the Cleveland Metropolitan School District All
City Choir, Imani Temple Ministries Choir, and a reenactment of
Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s 1968 speech “I’ve Been to the
Mountaintop” by Dyrell Barnett of the Karamu House. Dr. King’s
fraternity, Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc., will deliver
remarks. Voter registration and Census information booths will
be available. A reception will follow the ceremony.
“Everyone is invited to commemorate a Civil Rights icon, a
pioneer in architecture, and 150 everyday Clevelanders who go
above and beyond for their neighbors. This event is the capstone
to Cleveland Public Library’s 150th Anniversary and
sets the stage for our upcoming programs and discussions in the
new year surrounding democracy, the Census, and voter
Executive Director and CEO of Cleveland Public Library.
you want to say that I was a drum major, say that I was a drum
major for justice. Say that I was a drum major for peace. I was
a drum major for righteousness. And all of the other shallow
things will not matter.” – excerpt from Dr. Martin Luther King
1968 speech “The Drum Major Instinct.”
For more information about the 35th Annual Dr. Martin
Luther King, Jr. Commemorative Ceremony and the Unsung Heroes,