Claflin News

Claflin University to Host Special Observance Ceremony for Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. on Jan. 12

Jan 19, 2012


Claflin University will remember the legacy of the late Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. with a special observance ceremony on Jan. 12.

“It is vital that we take pause to commemorate the visionary legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr,” said President Dr. Henry N. Tisdale. “Because of Dr. King's peaceful approach and selfless commitment to Civil Rights, this nation is now a place where equal opportunity exists for all citizens.”

The ceremony will be held in the James and Dorothy Z. Elmore Chapel next Thursday starting at 6:30 p.m. The public is encouraged and invited to attend. Veteran law enforcement officer, community activist, author and film producer W. J. McDaniels of Columbia will be the ceremony's keynote speaker.

McDaniels has served for 16 years with the Richland County Sheriff's Office, where he is currently a master sergeant with the major crimes unit. In addition, he is an adjunct professor at Springfield College in Charleston.

McDaniels is the chairman of Project “Now What”, an organization that advocates better decision making for at-risk youth. Other civic organizations that McDaniels serves on include the Richland County School District 2 Reconnecting Communities and Schools Coalition, Columbia Community Art Center Council and Pan-African Film Festival Coalition.

A published author and poet, he recently was the assistant producer on the feature film “I Remember”. Currently, McDaniels is directing and producing his second film based on his novel “What You Ignore Will Hurt You.” He was selected as the 2010 Boys and Girls Club Alumni of the Year Award winner is his native town of Newark, New Jersey. He has a wife, Monique, and five children.

For more information on the ceremony, please contact Konist Davis-Johnson, coordinator for academic student activities, by phone at (803) 535-5591 or by e-mail at

Starting on Jan. 12, Claflin students will also engage in a host of activities as part of the National MLK Day of Service 2012. To learn more about the activities, visit

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