The Herald Times

Local King Day-related events include talks by Little Rock Nine member, filmmaker

By Mike Leonard 331-4368 | mleonard@heraldt.comJanuary 15, 2013

A member of the Little Rock Nine and a pioneering African-American filmmaker will be keynote speakers in a diverse program of activities scheduled to celebrate the legacy of Martin Luther King Jr. this month.

The city of Bloomington will present Carlotta LaNier as the featured speaker at its King Day program on the civil rights leader’s birthday at 7 p.m. Monday at the Buskirk-Chumley Theater.

LaNier and eight other black students enrolled at Little Rock Central High School in 1957 and initially were denied admission by Arkansas Gov. Orval Faubus. After President Dwight Eisenhower ordered the National Guard to intervene, the students were admitted, but taunted and harassed, as captured in iconic photographs shot by the late Indiana University professor Will Counts.

The desegregation of the school is considered one of the most important events in the civil rights movement. LaNier describes her experience in her recent book, “A Mighty Long Way: My Journey to Justice at Little Rock Central High.” LaNier is the president of the Little Rock Nine Foundation, a scholarship organization dedicated to ensuring equal access to education for blacks.

A 6 p.m. reception will precede the program at the Buskirk-Chumley Theater. During the program, remarks will be given by Mayor Mark Kruzan, IU Bloomington Provost Lauren Robel, King Commission Chairman William A. Vance Jr., and others. Musical performers will include the IU African American Choral Ensemble, directed by Raymond Wise, and the University Elementary School Martin Luther King Jr. Choir, directed by Sarah Maggie Olivo.

A complete listing of Martin Luther King Day of Service activities is available at

IU events

While IU is a partner in Monday’s Buskirk-Chumley program, the university will feature filmmaker, editor and producer Madeline Anderson Friday at a new event, the MLK Day Film Festival.

Anderson was one of the first black documentary makers and the director of “Integration Report (1960), “I Am Somebody” (1969) and “A Tribute to Malcolm X” (1969).

“We have a lot of her work here in our holdings either at the Black Film Archive or at IU in general,” said Roberta Radovich, a King Day program coordinator in the office of the vice president for diversity, equity and multicultural affairs at IU. “She’s never been to IU before, and we’re very excited to honor her this year.”

Anderson will speak following a screening of “I Am Somebody” at 4 p.m. Friday in the IU Cinema. A reception will follow at 5:45 p.m. in the Neal-Marshall Black Culture Center Grand Hall.

Other films to be shown in the MLK Day Film Festival include “Once Upon A Time … When We Were Colored,” at 3 p.m. Saturday, and “Boycott” at 9:30 p.m. Saturday. All the films are free but require tickets that can be picked up at the IU Auditorium box office during regular business hours or in the cinema lobby an hour before any screening.

MLK Day events kick off at the Buskirk-Chumley Theater Thursday at 7 p.m. with a student art showcase, “Expressions of Dr. King’s Dream for Humanity.”

In a new event this year, IU Athletics will incorporate videos, a special handout and other events at the IU women’s basketball game against Michigan State at 1 p.m. Sunday. Former IU athletes to be recognized include Bill Garrett, Milt Campbell, Denise Jackson and George Taliaferro.

A complete listing of IU MLK Day events can be found at

Theater experience

Ivy Tech Bloomington students collaborated with IU students to create “Catalyst: An Emergent Theater Experience inspired by Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.” The performance looks to express what it means to live in a pluralistic society.

The free performance is at 4 p.m. Sunday in Whittenberger Auditorium in the Indiana Memorial Union. Light refreshments and a conversation with the cast will follow the show.

Copyright: 2013

About Ivy Tech Community College

Ivy Tech Community College is Indiana's largest public postsecondary institution and the nation's largest singly accredited statewide community college system, accredited by the Higher Learning Commission. Ivy Tech has campuses throughout Indiana and also serves thousands of students annually online. It serves as the state's engine of workforce development, offering associate degrees, long- and short-term certificate programs, industry certifications, and training that aligns with the needs of the community. The College provides a seamless transfer to other colleges and universities in Indiana, as well as out of state, for a more affordable route to a bachelor's degree.