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The Ohio Civil Rights Commission is pleased to announce its annual statewide Dr. Martin
Luther King, Jr. Art, Writing & Multimedia Contest. The purpose of this contest is to
encourage students to reflect upon Dr. King’s life and the impact of his work during the Civil
Rights Movement and in present day America. It challenges students to think about
how civil rights and diversity affects their lives and how they can continue the work of
Dr. King by making a difference in their own communities.
All Ohio students in grades 6-12 are invited to enter this contest and they may submit one
(1) entry per student. Students choose which type of entry they wish to submit. All
contest entries must be accompanied by a clearly written official entry form completed
in its entirety.
Theme: The theme for the 2013 contest is "The Drum Major Instinct." Dr. King often
used the phrase "drum major instinct" meaning the instinct to be a leader. In his
sermon at the Ebenezer Baptist Church in Atlanta, Georgia, on February 4, 1968 he
said: "if you want to say that I was a drum major, say that I was a drum major for
justice, say that I was a drum major for peace, say that I was a drum major for
righteousness. And all of the other shallow things will not matter...I just want to leave a
committed life behind." A paraphrased version of this quote is inscribed on the Martin
Luther King Jr. Memorial in Washington, D.C.
For the entire text and audio please go to: MLK Drum Major Speech
Contest Entries: Dr. King’s speech encourages us to embrace our positive thoughts by
transforming those thoughts into positive action. He encouraged us to seek greatness,
but to do so through service and love. For the 2013 contest, students are to respond to
the following question: How would you serve as a drum major for peace, justice &
righteousness in your school? Community?
Contest winners will be invited to a recognition ceremony where they will be presented
with awards for their work.
Questions? Please call us at 888-278-7101 or 614-644-6755