2017 Events

"Keeping The Dream Alive"®

“This is New Hampshire – for the most part, we do it the right way, we are inclusive,” Sununu said. “And when we stay disciplined and we keep having those conversations, I really believe that's how we're going to let New Hampshire take the next steps forward.”

“Change – we want people to realize that America’s changed,” Jennings said. “We’ve come a long ways and we still have a ways to go, but we're moving in the right direction.”

Himanshi Dancers

New Hampshire leaders reflect on King's legacy at MLK Day dinner

 

Theme of dinner was 'Healing America's Ethnic and Racial Division'

Updated: 10:24 PM EST Jan 16, 2017

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Siobhan Lopez

Reporter

Show Transcript

NASHUA, N.H. —

New Hampshire and the nation celebrated the life and work of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Monday.

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In Nashua, dozens gathered for the National Cultural Diversity Awareness Council's 15th annual dinner.

The speakers drew on their personal experiences as they acknowledged the progress that's been made, and what needs to be done to honor King's legacy here in the Granite State.

“His work changed a generation, changed our country, and has inspired all of us ever since,” said U.S. Sen. Maggie Hassan.

Hassan was the recipient of the evening’s “Keeping the Dream Alive Award,” in recognition for outstanding public service.

“While the road to greater inclusion is not without significant challenges, time and time again, we have persevered to build a better future,” Hassan said.

The theme of this year’s dinner was "Healing America’s Ethnic and Racial Divide.”

“I mean, let's admit it: It's pretty tough out there right now,” said Gov. Chris Sununu, who was the keynote speaker. “Race relations in this country, diversity, is having a pretty tough time.”

“I'm an optimist,” said Wayne Jennings, founder and chief executive officer of NCDAC. “I believe that our country will get through this, and somehow, we'll find ways to build bridges across ethnic lines.”

State police Lt. John Marasco was also recognized for his work with the community. He thanked immigrants in the room, who, he said, have made him a better person.

“This is New Hampshire – for the most part, we do it the right way, we are inclusive,” Sununu said. “And when we stay disciplined and we keep having those conversations, I really believe that's how we're going to let New Hampshire take the next steps forward.”

“Change – we want people to realize that America’s changed,” Jennings said. “We’ve come a long ways and we still have a ways to go, but we're moving in the right direction.”

Both Hassan and Sununu stressed the need for Granite Staters to communicate with their neighbors to work together toward equality for all.