January 7, 2002
MEDIA CONTACT: Beth Simpkins
PHONE: 410-955-4288
E-MAIL: bsimpkins@jhmi.edu

Coretta Scott King Comes To Hopkins

For the 20th year, Johns Hopkins will remember and honor civil rights leader Martin Luther King, Jr., with tributes, music and community service awards. This year's event takes place at noon, Jan. 11 in Turner Auditorium (720 Rutland Ave.), and features civil rights activist Coretta Scott King, widow of the late Rev. Dr. King Jr. as keynote speaker.

In keeping with Hopkins tradition, the celebration will also recognize employee volunteerism, with a presentation of the institutions' Martin Luther King Award for Community Service. (A list of winners, with a description of their contributions is attached.)

Levi Watkins, M.D., associate dean for postdoctoral programs at the School of Medicine and a professor of cardiac surgery, again presides as master of ceremonies. Unified Voices, a chorus comprised of Hopkins employees and community members, will perform special music.

Mrs. King will receive the MLK Ideals Award in recognition of her outstanding service and commitment to civil rights programs and principles.

Previous speakers at this yearly celebration have included Archbishop Desmond Tutu, Rosa Parks, Harry Belafonte, Dick Gregory, Andrew Young, Stevie Wonder, Kweisi Mfume, Julian Bond, Maya Angelou, Taylor Branch, and Hopkins surgeons Ben Carson and Watkins.

Martin Luther King Jr. Community Service Award

Chirag B. Patel
Graduate Student
Biomedical Engineering
The Johns Hopkins University
A native of Spring, Texas, Chirag Patel arrived in Baltimore as an undergraduate at Johns Hopkins and immediately volunteered with the English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) Program at Greater Homewood, teaching classes and tutoring students one-on-one. In the summer of 2000, he mobilized more than 600 freshmen for 27 service projects throughout Baltimore City, picking up many of the donations and delivering them to the sites himself. As a graduate student, Patel has continued his involvement and broadened its scope, volunteering in the Adult Emergency Department at Hopkins Hospital.

Christine Gilliard
Infant Teacher, Early Head Start
Martin Luther King Jr., Head Start at Park Avenue
The Johns Hopkins Hospital
Christine Gilliard's community service begins at home. Collaborating with her husband, who is pastor of Mount Carmel Baptist Church, she has served in multiple volunteer and leadership roles, including her work with the Assistance for Youth Academic Counseling Program, as a bible-schoolteacher and youth counselor, and as director of the youth choir. In the 12 years since Mount Carmel began, the congregation has grown from 26 to 1000, and Gilliard's youth choir, which began with four participants, now numbers 110 children. As a result of her master's thesis research on the dropout rate of teen mothers in East Baltimore, Gilliard has begun mentoring young women, and in 2000, she helped a teen mother obtain housing, maintain proper health for herself and her children, and continue her education.

Clarence Booker Jr.

Counselor
Department of Psychiatry, First Step Day Hospital
The Johns Hopkins Hospital
Clarence Booker Jr. has a long and diverse history of community service. He mentors adolescents suffering from substance abuse and low self-esteem, organizes a regular clothing drive for Hopkins patients, serves as a deacon in his church, where he has a sick and shut-in ministry, and finds time to read and shop for sick or lonely senior citizens. Two years ago, Booker heard of a family whose East Baltimore rowhouse had been destroyed by fire. Booker and his wife, after discussing what they could do to help, gave the family a bedroom set. "The people had young children," he told a friend. "And it was cold."

Gary Novak
Research Associate
Oncology Center Services Division
The Johns Hopkins University, School of Medicine
For the past five years, Gary Novak has been the catalyst and coordinator of the Dunbar Student Program, providing intensive, laboratory-based experiences and support for up to eight Paul Laurence Dunbar Community High School students each year. Arranging for these students to work as part of a team in designated cancer research laboratories with some of the best-known cancer researchers in the world, Novak expects them one day to become scientists working to cure disease, heading-up labs of their own.

Kay Glisan
Facilities Services Manager
Department of Medicine
The Johns Hopkins University, School of Medicine
For the last two years, Kay Glisan has organized and run the Hopkins contribution to the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation, inspiring volunteers and participants with her dedication and enthusiasm. As a captain and volunteer, she has helped the JDRF Walk raise nearly $90,000, earning Johns Hopkins Medicine a national fund-raising award and moving scientists closer to finding a cure for her daughter and 16 million other Americans with diabetes.

Linda Dunn
Patient Information Coordinator
Department of Psychiatry, Community Psychiatry Program
The Johns Hopkins Hospital
For more than 30 years, Linda Dunn's work has benefitted the mentally ill, an often forgotten segment of the population. Co-workers praise her modesty, generosity, optimism and kindness with patients. Dunn spends all year collecting personal-care items for "care packages" for more than 60 patients, which she distributes each Christmas. Her greatest gift, one co-worker said, is "the respect and friendship" she gives to her "family" of chronically mentally ill, celebrating and commiserating with those who spend much of their lives marginalized by society.

Loretta I. Hoepfner
Administrative Assistant/Supervisor
Division of General Internal Medicine
The Johns Hopkins University, School of Medicine
Loretta I. Hoepfner's dedication to community service has benefitted many organizations, including the American Lung Association of Maryland and the Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation. In addition to leadership roles in both organizations, she also enjoys working "in the trenches." In the summer of 2000, she took a week of her vacation to fly to Ohio to provide medical (and mechanical) support during the ALA's 3,150-mile Big Ride Across America bike tour. Hoepner has served on the executive committee of the Komen Foundation's annual Breast Cancer Symposium for four years, and last year chaired the educational event, attended by more than 650 registrants. Hoepfner's work honors the memory of her mother who died of breast cancer in 1988.


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