Local NAACP holds MLK celebration at New Life


The local chapter #6042 of the NAACP and youth chapter #67AJ, hosted a lively MLK celebration Monday, January 16 at New Life Assembly of God church in Monticello. 

The program began with Rev. Daryl Daniels and Toccara Daniels welcoming the crowd and reminding everyone of the purpose of the gathering.

The special MLK community choir opened the program with “We Shall Overcome” which brought the crowd to their feet and set the tone for the evening.

NAACP Secretary Miyoshi Smith addressed the group and thanked local sponsors of the event.

Oak Grove Assembly of God pastors Brandon and Amanda Laudell read scripture and said the opening prayer. 

The crowd and the choir were then lead in song to “Lift Every Voice.”

Monticello Mayor Jason Akers and Drew County Judge Jessie Griffin were present, along with Judge Bruce Anderson, Quorum Court member Zachary Hill and City Council members Cedric Leonard and Clarissa Pace.

Akers and Griffin thanked the crowd for the opportunity to speak and reiterated the nights theme of “Tear Down Walls.”

Meygan Bivens, a local high school student, gave a youth perspective and call to action to the crowd.

An offering was taken and another selection from the choir was performed.

The keynote speaker for the night was Veronica Smith Creer, former Mayor of El Dorado and author.

Freedom Fund Chair Peggy Orr, recognized the 2022 Freedom Fund Honorees that included several individuals, Union Bank and Monticello Youth Cheer League.

The mission of the local NAACP chapter is to achieve equity, political rights, and social inclusion by advancing policies and practices that expand human and civil rights, eliminate discrimination, and accelerate well-being, education and economic security of black people and all persons of color.


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