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Furman sponsoring multiple events commemorating Martin Luther King, Jr.

Former NFL player, equality advocate and educator Wade Davis spoke Friday, Jan. 18, during a Community Breakfast celebrating the life and work of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. The breakfast began at 8 a.m., with the program following at 8:30 a.m. in the Melvin and Dollie Younts Conference Center on the Furman University campus.

His talk, “Injustice Anywhere is a Threat to Justice Everywhere: Sustaining the Struggle for Equity,” was open to the public.

Former NFL player Davis Wade spoke at the MLK Community Breakfast.

Davis is a thought leader, public speaker and consultant on gender, race, and orientation equality. He is the NFL’s first LGBTQ+ inclusion consultant and currently advises numerous professional sports leagues on issues at the intersection sexism, racism and homophobia.

In addition to his work in sports, Davis consults for Google, Netflix, AppNexus and others to help create transformative solutions to build inclusive corporate cultures.

Davis is a Global Champion for Innovation for UN Women, as well as a member of the National Fair Housing Alliance 50th Anniversary committee. He is a founding member of VICE’s Diversity and Inclusion Advisory board with Gloria Steinem, Roberta Kaplan and others, and serves on the advisory board of Sparks and Honey and Gay Men’s Health Crisis (GMHC), the world’s first and leading provider of HIV/AIDS prevention, care and advocacy.

Davis’ work around gender equality includes partnering with the Ms. Foundation and Huffington Post Women, for whom he has launched initiatives and PSA’s to define, establish and achieve political, social and economic equality for women and men.

In solidarity with the #MeToo movement, Time’s Up Now and Davis are collaborating to develop curricula and initiatives to remove the institutional barriers that women face in the workplace.

In 2012, Davis was named executive director of the You Can Play Project, an organization dedicated to ending discrimination, sexism and homophobia in sports.

A former national surrogate for President Obama, Davis has served as adjunct professor at the NYU School of Professional Studies Tisch Institute for Sports Management, Media, and Business and has also served in the same capacity at Rutgers University School of Public Affairs and Administration. He continues to lecture on the intersections of race, sexuality, gender, and sports at universities nationally and internationally.

Davis was born in Little Rock, Arkansas and graduated from Weber State University in Ogden, Utah with a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration. In 2014, he received an honorary Doctor of Public Service degree from Northeastern University for his leadership and ongoing efforts to eradicate homophobia and sexism in athletics.

Other Furman events commemorating Martin Luther King, Jr. follow. Events are free and open to the public except the Jan. 13 Scholarship Gala and the Jan. 18 Community Breakfast.

Building the Beloved Community 2019
Martin Luther King, Jr. Commemoration
A partnership between Furman University and
Alpha Phi Alpha Greenville Foundation, Inc.
Jan. 13-Feb. 16, 2019

MLK Community Breakfast: Wade Davis
Friday, Jan. 18
8 a.m. | Breakfast
8:30 a.m. | Program
Melvin and Dollie Younts Conference Center
“Injustice Anywhere is a Threat to Justice Everywhere: Sustaining the Struggle for Equity”
Tickets: $50 per person

MLK Holiday – A Day of Service
Monday, Jan. 21
Trone Student Center, Watkins Room
8:30 a.m. | Breakfast and check-in
9:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. | Service

Approximately 250 Furman students, faculty and staff will be volunteering at numerous locations around the community from 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. The projects will take place at various community venues, including Brutontown Community Center, Greenville Free Medical Clinic and the YMCA Camp in Simpsonville.

Sponsor: Heller Service Corps, the Center for Inclusive Communities, and Fraternity and Sorority Life
Contact: Nancy Cooper, or 864-294-2900

Joseph Vaughn Scholarship Oratorical Competition
10 a.m.-2 p.m., Saturday, Feb. 16
“The Next Civil Rights Movement: What Direction Should It Take?”
Springfield Baptist Church, Fellowship Hall
Sponsor: Alpha Phi Alpha Greenville Foundation,
Contact: Mike Chatman, or 864-906-7078

For table or ticket information for the Community Breakfast, email, or RSVP by calling 864-294-3464. Or contact Chandra Dillard at and 864-294-2503. Visit the Furman MLK website. For more information about Wade Davis, please visit

Last updated January 16, 2019
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Clinton Colmenares
News & Media Relations Director