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Martin Luther King Jr. Day 2019

Each year we invite students, staff, and faculty to join us for one of several opportunities to serve in the community and learn about civil rights in Richmond. The University also hosts an annual commemoration event featuring student performances and an inspirational keynote speaker.

Infinite Hope

The work of Dr. King remains unfinished, and the University has committed to thoughtfully considering what his vision means today. On Mon., Jan. 21, 2019, the University will again observe the Martin Luther King Jr. holiday by canceling classes and observing the holiday for employees.

Students, staff, and faculty will have opportunities to serve in the community and come together at the end of the day to enjoy the annual all-campus commemoration as a time to reflect on what Dr. King's dream means today. Registration for service activities and Family Day is open now; the Commemoration and Kick-Off Breakfast are open to the University of Richmond community, without registration.

MLK Day Overview

Schedule of Events

10:00 a.m. – 11:00 a.m.
Kick-off Breakfast
Program begins at 10:30, and features a keynote by Julian Hayter and a performance by Block Crew

11:30 a.m. - 2:00 p.m.
Service Opportunities in the community (registration with your UR login and password required)

11:30 a.m. - 1:30 p.m.
MLK Family Day in the Modlin Center for the Arts (registration required)

2:00 p.m. – 3:00 p.m.
MLK Reflection Space
Booker Hall Lobby

3:00 p.m. – 4:30 p.m.
Commemoration Ceremony
Camp Concert Hall

4:30 p.m. - 5:30 p.m.
Modlin Center for the Arts

Service Opportunities

Day of Service/MLK Family Day

Day of Service

11:30 a.m.-2:00 p.m.

Many thanks to the Bonner Center for Civic Engagement for co-sponsoring these service sites at which students, staff, and faculty may serve during the Day of Service. Click on this link to register for a Day of Service. Select "Login" and use your UR login and password.

Tricycle Gardens – Farm tasks including compost management, pruning, weeding, transplanting seedlings, cleaning up the farm, and mulching - local non-profit located downtown on Jefferson Ave.
James River Association – Self-directed trash cleanup - JRA provides the necessary supplies, including trash grabbers, gloves, bags, first aid kits and a report sheet (**no transportation provided for this project**)
Habitat for Humanity ReStore - Sorting, organizing, labeling, unpacking, merchandising, pricing, and helping customers take merchandise to their car
No-sew Fleece Blankets -  Make blankets and cards that will be given to youth upon arriving at Elk Hill’s residential program through foster care. This activitiy will take place in the UR Law School
East End Cemetery – Clear brush and restore pathways at a traditional African American cemetery in the East End. You may even discover a mislaid grave marker or two.
Library of Virginia - Transcribing handwritten pages by reading the written text and typing it into digital form. Documents include those from the Civil War, African American narratives, and Patrick Henry's executive letters. Please bring a laptop. This project will take place in THC 305.

Each activity can accommodate a limited number of volunteers so registration is required. Transportation is provided for most opportunities.

MLK Family Day

11:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m.

MLK Family Day will present creative learning opportunities around MLK Day and civil rights history for children ages 2-12, in the Modlin Center for the Arts. Volunteers will be needed for set up assistance from 8:30-9:30 a.m., to help staff the registration table, to lead the activities for our visitors, and help with clean-up.

Click here to register to attend MLK Family Day.

Commemoration Ceremony

Infinite Hope

Mon., Jan. 21, 2019 | 3:00 - 4:30 p.m.

Camp Concert Hall

Reception to follow in Booth Lobby, Modlin Center for the Arts


  • Keynote address by Christy Coleman, CEO of the American Civil War Museum
  • Student Performances

About the keynote speaker:

Christy Coleman grew up in Williamsburg, Virginia and earned her Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees from Hampton University. She currently serves as CEO of the American Civil War Museum, located in Richmond and Appomattox, Virginia. In her role as CEO, she has been instrumental in furthering discussion around the Civil War, its legacies, and its relevance to our lives today not only in the Richmond region but around the nation.

She began her career at the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation. During her time with CWF she had increasing levels of responsibility finally serving as Director of Historic Programs being responsible for all programming and tours in the Historic Area. In 1999 she left to become President and CEO of the Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History in Detroit, MI. In 2008, Ms. Coleman was named President and CEO of the American Civil War Center at Historic Tredegar (ACWC). 

In 2013 she helped orchestrate the merger of ACWC with the Museum of the Confederacy to create the American Civil War Museum. Christy has served on a number of local commissions and national boards. Christy strives to make museum experiences meaningful to diverse communities. A tireless advocate for the power of museums, narrative disruption and inclusivity, she has been an innovator and leader in the history museum field.

Select Professional Activities/Awards/Recognitions