Exterior of the Sachs Administrative Building in winter

Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Attorney, reverend and Rainbow PUSH Coalition senior advisor Janette Wilson will visit Northeastern Illinois University on Jan. 17 as the keynote speaker of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Annual Program. Free and open to the public, the program will take place at 2 p.m. in the Auditorium, 3701 W. Bryn Mawr Ave. Parking permits are required to park on campus.

The event also will feature the NEIU Student Singers and a performance by Muntu Dance Theatre of Chicago. A reception will immediately follow in the Golden Eagles Room.

Wilson began her career as a chemist, which led to teaching positions at all levels—from elementary school to college—in the Chicago area, to the legal profession and finally to Christian ministry. She has been a teacher and served as an environmental chemist, a pump engineer and a trial lawyer. Wilson has hosted a weekly cable TV broadcast, administered a medical center and has been engaged in the struggle for civil and human rights all of her life.

“We are exited to have her as a guest because of her advocacy and contribution to many social movements in Chicago and beyond,” Northeastern African, African American Resource Center Director Meagan Mitchell said.

Wilson has served as associate pastor of Grace Calvary United Methodist and Cosmopolitan Community Church, associate pastor for Family Ministry for the First Baptist Congregational United Church of Christ in Chicago and is currently the Associate Pastor of Leadership Development and Strategic Planning for the Providence MB Church. Wilson also recently served as the first African American female dean of the Doctor of Ministry Program for United Theological Seminary in Dayton, Ohio. Spending most of her adult life as a civil rights advocate, Wilson has been an advocate for minorities in receiving social justice and economic parity.

The life and work of the late Civil Rights leader also will be honored during the annual Martin Luther King Jr. Day of Service. Sponsored by Student Leadership Development, the event will take place Jan. 16 from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Curie Metropolitan High School, 4959 Archer Ave. in Chicago. Northeastern is partnering with City Year and 1,000 volunteers from area schools to perform service projects and enjoy a provided lunch.

A bus will depart at 7:45 a.m. from the Main Campus out of The Nest parking lot or participants can travel independently. Space is limited; register by Jan. 13.