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January 14, 2011

Martin Luther King, Jr. Holiday 2011

For 25 years now, our nation has stood together to observe the birth date of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. – one of most effective champions in the civil rights movement for African Americans.

His courage, conviction and eloquence helped to overturn years of divisive and segregating policies against African Americans, and inspired our national civil rights policies. In his short life, Dr. King travelled more than six million miles and delivered more than 2,500 speeches including the famed March on Washington where he delivered the “I Have a Dream” speech. His words and actions in many ways transformed our world – and his legacy continues to advance and enhance the lives of African Americans.

This year, I ask you to take time to remember Dr. King’s achievements and to consider the many ways our roles at the UConn Health Center are helping to keep the dream alive. The UConn Health Center is firmly committed to opening the doors of education and employment to all people. The John Dempsey Hospital and our outpatient medical and dental services provide life-saving care to all citizens. And our students, faculty and staff contribute countless volunteer hours providing medical care, mentoring and other vital services in our community – and across the globe. We recognize that changing the world for the better starts with quiet acts of respect, kindness and generosity for all people.

With my best wishes for this year’s Martin Luther King Day celebration,

Cato T. Laurencin, M.D., Ph.D.
Vice President for Health Affairs
Dean, UConn School of Medicine