United We Walk
Our Shared Mission:
To celebrate annually the birthday of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., by embracing the continuing influence and impact of Dr. King's dream of creating a beloved community that values diversity, promotes unity, and underscores the worth of every person.
United We Walk 2023
29th Annual Event
Sunday, January 15
1 - 3 p.m. - In Person
2023 Theme - I Have A Dream...1963-2023
West Bloomfield Middle School
6000 Orchard Lake Road
West Bloomfield, MI.
2023 Leadership Team
Maya Aisner - 12th grade
Jamir Benjamin - 11th grade
Brad Bordelove - 11th grade
Moriah Culver - 10th grade
Kenna Ndukewe - 12th grade
Chloe Norman - 11th grade
Button Design Contest
- About Us
- Awards & Newspaper Articles
- Community Leaders
- World Leaders
- Written Expression Winners
- Sponsors & Community Partners
- Donate - Become a Sponsor
- Community Links
United We Walk is a Founding Sponsor of the Washington, D.C., Dr. Martin L. King, Jr., National Memorial.
United We Walk Logo
Designed by Justin Brown
United We Walk Adult Co-Chair
Wednesday, November 30 - 6 p.m.
Wednesday, December 14 - 6 p.m.
Wednesday, January 11 - 6 p.m.
Contact Jennifer Graham, if you are interested in joining the meetings at firstname.lastname@example.org
- Aisner, Maya – Student Co-Chair
- Bazzi, Dania - Superintendent
- Benjamin, Jamir – Student Co-Chair
- Bordelove, Brad – Student Co-Chair
- Culver, Moriah – Student Co-Chair
- Dobson, Kenneth
- Estill, Russell
- Flaisher, David
- Floer, Renee
- Glinz, Jamie
- Graham, Jennifer - Adult Chair
- James, Sonja
- Kakos, Harrison
- Kieft, Taylor
- Macon, Deb
- Mandel, Kelly
- Mindell, Amy
- Montante, Kendra
- Moretsky, Barbara
- Ndukewe, Kenna – Student Co-Chair
- Norman, Chloe – Student Co-Chair
- O'Brien, Juliann
- Patton, Mike, Police Chief
- Scott, Dave
- Tobin, Emily
- Warshay, Jonathan
- Welcome, Sue
- Williams, Denisha
- Woodruff, Hertha
Legacy of Leadership
2023 Jennifer Graham,
2022 Jennifer Graham
2021 Jennifer Graham
2020 Jill Bickford, Jennifer Graham
2019 Jennifer Graham
2018 Jennifer Graham
2017 Justin Brown, Jennifer Graham, Pastor Tim Holzerland
2016 Justin Brown, Jennifer Graham, Pastor Tim Holzerland, Police Chief Mike Patton
2015 Pastor Tim Holzerland, CharRhonda Moye, Police Chief Mike Patton, Hertha Woodruff
2014 CharRhonda Moye, Police Chief Mike Patton, Rev. Chris Richards, Hertha Woodruff
2013 David Flaisher, Rev. Chris Richards, Regina Strong
2012 Brian Flaggs, David Flaisher, Katherine Sheiko
2011 Brian Flaggs, Pastor Bill Matlack, Eleanor Squaire-Spears
2010 David Henig, Sheryl L. Mitchell, Brian Flaggs, Pastor Bill Matlack
2009 David Henig, Sheryl L. Mitchell, Brian Flaggs
2008 Rev. David Robertson, David Henig, Steve Wasko
2007 Rev. David Robertson, Raman Singh, Sherry Masterson, Steve Wasko
2006 Nanci Gelsey, Denise Drake, Rev. David Robertson, Steve Wasko
2005 Nanci Gelsey, Rev. David Robertson, Velma Jones, Steve Wasko
2004 Nanci Gelsey, Velma Jones, Rev. Bruce Quatman, Steve Wasko
2003 Deb Macon, Rev. Bruce Quatman, Velma Jones, Steve Wasko
2002 Stuart Brickner, Deb Macon, Rev. Bruce Quatman
2001 Stuart Brickner, Deb Macon, Shelley Willner
2000 Jeddy Hood, Stuart Brickner, Dorothy Friedl
1999 Jeddy Hood, Stuart Brickner, Dorothy Friedl
1998 Jeddy Hood, Stuart Brickner, Hon. Denise Langford Morris
1997 Jeddy Hood, Hertha Woodruff
1996 Jeddy Hood, Beth Borson, Diane Ferguson, Sharkey Haddad, Hertha Woodruff
1995 Hertha Woodruff, Beth Borson
United We Walk Student Co-Chairs:
2023 Maya Aisner, Jamir Benjamin, Brad Bordelove, Moriah Culver, Kenna Ndukewe, Chloe Norman
2022 Kamala Mallubhotla, Hannah Rashty, Natasha Selektor, Mathea Stubblefield
2021 Faith Johnson, Kamala Mallubhotla, Navya Paingol, Hannah Rashty, Natasha Selektor
2020 Sage Golden, Hannah Rashty, Rachel Zubrzycki
2019 Veronica Boddy, Lara Mathias, Brooke Taylor, Joe Thomas, Rachel Zubrzycki
2018 Lauryn Azu, Maria Kakos, Reese McCaskill, Jr., Jordan Robinson
2017 Tom (Zay) Douglas, Cydnee Graham, Maria Kakos, Jordan Robinson
2016 Evan Foster, Cydnee Graham, Mario Kakos, Vernon Moye
2015 Mario Kakos, Vernon Moye, Jonathan Nirenberg, Rachel Warnicke
2014 Marcus Brooks, Nicholas Foster, Sara Nirenberg, Rachel Warnicke
2013 Marcus Brooks, Nicholas Foster, Malcolm Moye, Sara Nirenberg
2012 Alyxis Flaggs, Olivia Peace
2011 Alyxis Flaggs, David Kakos, Erin Lasenby
2010 Chanel Geter, Taylor Gunn, Alyxis Flaggs, Erin Lasenby
2009 Ariel Flaggs, Chanel Geter, Taylor Gunn, Alicia Lasenby
2008 Michelle Boyd, Chanel Geter, Becca Portney
2007 Michelle Boyd, Chanel Geter, Becca Portney
2006 Michelle Boyd, Becca Portney
2005 Michael Rubyan, Sawdayah Brownlee, Samit Sheth
2004 Michael Rubyan, Samit Sheth
2003 Rachel Charlupski, Sonal Sheth
2002 Vibhuti Kowluru, Oluwakemi Talabi
2001 Lauren Gaines, Jasmine Patton
2000 Nathaniel Hargress, Stephanie Kakos
1999 Michael Schonberger, Carmen Woodruff, Courtney Youngblood
1998 Stephen Goutman, Monique Johnson
1997 Tara Edwards, Dan Tounsel
Note: 1997 was the first year for United We Walk Student Co-Chairs.
United We Walk Event Awards and Committee Member Awards:
- 2021 Student Co-Chairs: Faith Johnson, Kamala Mallubhotla, Navya Paingol, Hannah Rashty and Natasha Selektor received 2021 West Bloomfield Youth Assistance Awards
- 2021 Student Co-Chair, Navya Paingol, received the 2021 Michigan Week, John Freed Volunteer Service Award
- Certificate of Special Senatorial Recognition Awarded to United We Walk for 25th Anniversary by U.S. Senator Gary Peters at 2019 Michigan Week Community Awards Breakfast
- Signature Community Recognition Award for United We Walk for 25th Anniversary at 2019 Michigan Week Community Awards Breakfast
- Brooke Taylor named a Coca-Cola Scholar for the 2019 Class Through the Coca-Cola Scholars Program
- "The Splash" Person of the Week: Jennifer Graham, November 20, 2018, Civic Center TV
- Hertha Woodruff, 2016 MLK Drum Major for Service Award, from President Barack Obama
- Mario Kakos is the 2016 Michigan Week Greater West Bloomfield Community, Hidden Treasure Honor Roll Award Honoree for United We Walk.
- Jonathan Nirenberg is the 2015 Michigan Week Greater West Bloomfield Community, Hidden Treasure Honor Roll Award Honoree for United We Walk.
- Rev. Chris Richards, Sara Nirenberg, Nick Foster, Marcus Brooks, and Rachel Warnicke are the 2014 Michigan Week Greater West Bloomfield Community, Hidden Treasure Honor Roll Award Honorees from several organizations including United We Walk.
- Crystal Brooks is the 2013 Michigan Week Greater West Bloomfield Community, Hidden Treasure Honor Roll Award Honoree for United We Walk.
- Hertha Woodruff is the 2012 Michigan Week Greater West Bloomfield Community, Hidden Treasure Honor Roll Award Honoree for United We Walk.
- 2004 Telly Award Received for the United We Walk 10th Anniversary Video at 25th Annual Telly Award National Competition
- 2001 Cranbrook Peace Foundation - Expanding the Celebration of the Life of Martin Luther King Jr. Grant Award Winner
- 2001 Michigan Association of School Boards - "Michigan's Best" Community Relations Award
- 2000 The Oakland Press Gold Medallion - Excellence in Education Award
- 2000 and 1999 National School Public Relations - Golden Achievement Awards for Exemplary Public Relations Activity
- 2000 Greater West Bloomfield - Michigan Week Community Achievement Award
- 2000 State of Michigan - Michigan Week Community Achievement Award
- 1999 Governor’s Honor Roll, Hertha Woodruff, by Governor John Engler for United We Walk on April 9, 1999
Race Relations & Diversity Task Force, DIVERSITY CHAMPIONS
- Lamar Crowder nominated by United We Walk in 2019
- Jennifer Graham nominated by United We Walk in 2017
- Justin Brown nominated by MLK365 in 2017
- Pastor Tim Holzerland nominated by United We Walk in 2016
- Police Chief Mike Patton nominated by United We Walk in 2015
- Tamela Peace nominated by United We Walk in 2014
- Crystal Brooks nominated by West Bloomfield School District in 2014
- Barbara Moretsky nominated by MLK365 in 2014
- Pam Zajac nominated by United We Walk in 2012
- Brian Flaggs nominated by West Bloomfield School District in 2012
- David Henig nominated by United We Walk in 2011
- Katherine Sheiko nominated by West Bloomfield School District in 2011
- Sheryl Mitchell nominated by the League of Women Voters, Oakland Area, in 2010
- Eleanor Squaire-Spears nominated by West Bloomfield School District in 2010
- Hertha Woodruff nominated by United We Walk in 2004
March 2021 - Issue 3 - Volume 47 - The Laker
United We Walk Event Shifts Online for 2021
January 10, 2017 - C&G Newspapers
MLK Celebration Set With United We Walk
January 17, 2016 - Oakland University News Bureau Online News Article
Mercy and compassion at United We Walk
April 15, 2015 - Oakland County
W. Bloomfield Police Chief Michael Patton Named Diversity Champion
January 28, 2015 - West Bloomfield Beacon
Sheiko Elementary, 5th Graders
January 18, 2015 - The Oakland Press
United We Walk celebrates legacy of Dr. King today
January 30, 2014 - The Oakland Press
People on the move: Wesley Berry
January 29, 2014 - West Bloomfield Beacon
Florist Demonstrates MLK's Teachings, Honored as Community Leader
January 15, 2014 - The Oakland Press
MLK Celebrated in Oakland County
January 4, 2014 - West Bloomfield Beacon
WBHS demonstrates MLK preaching of equality
January 21, 2013 - Detroit Free Press
United We Walk brings schools together for Martin Luther King Jr. Day
January 11, 2013 - West Bloomfield Beacon
School districts prepare MLK programs
January 28, 2012 - The Oakland Press
United Community Celebrates King's Birthday With Brisk Walk
January 17, 2012 - West Bloomfield Beacon
West Bloomfield Communities Honor MLK Day
January 16, 2011 - The Oakland Press
Keeping His Dream Alive - West Bloomfield celebrates MLK with a walk
January 18, 2010 - The Oakland Press
January 21, 2010 - Jewish News
Dr. King's Legacy
January 22, 2009 - Jewish News
United We Walk is primarily a community event, designed to celebrate Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.: his life, dedication, and dream of equality in the world. In keeping, the United We Walk Committee strives to honor this dream each year by walking, celebrating, and holding vigil together with other members and guests of the community in a focused effort to live the dream and further enhance our thoroughly-diverse community. Starting in 2009, the Committee has endeavored to recognize the contributions of our community members on a more personal level. Thus, the Community Leader Recognition Award (CLRA) was created (on a trial basis) to be conferred during United We Walk's Sunday event celebration to a previously selected and deserving community member who has dedicated him/herself to giving back to his/her community according to his/her talents and resources.
The United We Walk Community Leader Recognition Award is intended to honor any community member(s) that the Committee wishes to recognize for their consistent and selfless contributions to the community. The Award is neither exclusive nor intended for more than thankful recognition. The Committee's deliberation process is extensive and thoughtful, as the Committee seeks to honor entirely deserving candidates, independent of whether or not they are well-known throughout the community for their efforts.
Chanel Geter, Student Co-Chair, 2007-2010
2017 - United We Walk XXIII"His Dream Raises Us Up"
Michigan filmmaker, Mike Rott with his passion for film, technology and the arts has produced an award-winning documentary about the life and legacy of Tuskegee Air-men ("Red Tail") fighter pilot, WWII Nazi P.O.W. and eyewitness to the atrocities at Da-chau Concentration Camp, Lt. Col. Alexander Jefferson (95).
Mike is a West Bloomfield resident who honed his passion for all things tech at Apple, Inc where he served as Lead Creative at the Somerset location. He educated the public teaching over 5,000 classes during his tenure while leading the team of 20+ trainers. When realizing that further advancement within Apple necessitated relocating to Cu-pertino, California, Mike stayed in Metro-Detroit and pursued his dream of opening his creative studio to tell socially conscious stories through film. He will tell you that he is a “Detroiter" at heart and there’s no place like home.
The Rott family is a showbiz family. Mike's father, Sheldon Rott (Co-Producer / Music Director, The Luft Gangster: Memoirs of A Second Class Hero) and mother, Carol Rott (Art Director / Interviewer, The Luft Gangster: Memoirs of A Second Class Hero) met in the entertainment industry. Sheldon was a band leader, record producer and promoter who has worked with many artists during the glory days of the Motown era and even promoted The Beatles during the early phases of the British Invasion with Capitol Rec-ords. Carol was a popular recording artist who sang for Decca records and enjoyed a long career as a singer under the stage name Vickie Carroll. Both are natives of Detroit and West Bloomfield residents. Sheldon and Carol met to discuss a recording contract but they ended up signing a marriage contract instead.
In 2010, Mike formed his production company Dynasty Media Network, LLC and opened a full service creative studio located in downtown Ferndale, MI. The business is active and future film projects are under development while simultaneously re-purposing his studio as Metro-Detroit’s exclusive Apple training center.
Mike's dedication to telling important stories that unite communities is clearly evident in the way this film project came together. In order to ensure that Lt. Col. Alexander Jeffer-son’s story got told, Mike funded the award-winning feature length film, ‘The Luft Gangster: Memoirs of A Second Class Hero’ from the proceeds of the sale of his home. The project is currently seeking support to distribute the film to High Schools nationally and educate the youth of America about the senselessness of racism, bigotry and segregation.
After viewing the film, Maj. Bill Burnett, President of the Macon-Thomas Chapter of Tuskegee Airmen, personally sponsored Mike and Sheldon Rott for induction as hon-orary Tuskegee Airmen chapter members. Both feel a great sense of personal pride for this and are honored to help carry on the legacy of the legendary Tuskegee Airmen while simultaneously raising awareness for the prevention of genocide and fighting the senselessness of racism.
2016 - United We Walk XXII"Making His Dream Our Reality"
Pastor Ron Todd
Actor & National Gospel Artist Pastor Ron Todd is a 2004 alumnus of West Bloomfield High School. His acting and singing career has taken him to Chicago, Atlanta, and Texas, among other cities. It has afforded him the opportunity to be featured on various networks including BET accessing over 7.5 million viewers. Pastor Todd has released 6 songs over the last 10 years including his latest single "Forgive Me", a spirited traditional Gospel song, as well as another single "Better".
Todd made his television debut in 2002 on WB20’s Everyone’s a Star and UPN 50’s Showdown in Motown. Pastor Ron Todd has not only been on a number of radio stations but is also the Radio Host of one of the nation’s top radio shows, The Ron Todd Show, a hit national syndicated show heard every Sunday from 6-8pm EST; on worldwidecoreradio.com. also the host of one of the nation’s top radio shows, The Ron Todd Show on Worldwide Core Radio.
Pastor Todd is married to Carmen with three children, Gabrielle, Nahla, and Sebastian, who is 2 months old. He is also the Senior Pastor of Kingdom Dwellers International Church which he founded in late 2012.
2015 - United We Walk XXI"Mentoring for Social Justice and Peace"
Police Chief Michael Patton
Michael Patton has served as the West Bloomfield Police Chief since October 2010 and has been a member of the West Bloomfield Police Department for 29 years. He has a master's degree in public administration from Oakland University and attended the FBI National Academy in 2004. He has served as the United We Walk Chairperson of the Walk Subcommittee and as Adult Co-Chairperson. He works and lives in West Bloomfield. He values diversity, promotes unity, underscores the worth of every person, and exemplifies all of United We Walk's MLK365 initiatives of caring, fairness, citizenship, respect, responsibility and trustworthiness. He mentors for social justice and peace, developing strong relationships with the following community groups:
- West Bloomfield High School African American Awareness Club
- West Bloomfield African American Parent Association
- West Bloomfield School District Parent Communication Network
- United We Walk
- West Bloomfield Chamber of Commerce
- Chaldean Chamber of Commerce
- Jewish Federation of Metropolitan Detroit
- Anti-Defamation League
- West Bloomfield Clergy Association
- Greater West Bloomfield Community Coalition
- West Bloomfield Youth Assistance
- West Bloomfield Civic Center TV
- Middle Eastern American TV & Radio
- West Bloomfield Optimist Club
- Defeat the Label
- WB Police Dept. Teaching, Educating, and Mentoring (TEAM) Program
- Crime Prevention Association of Michigan
- Crime Stoppers of Michigan
- West Bloomfield Parks & Recreation
- West Bloomfield Township Public Library
According to the October 5, 2010, edition of The Oakland Press, upon his appointment as Chief of the West Bloomfield Police Department, Chief Patton said, "I hope to be a unifying force within this department and the government of this township. Even after 25 years, I still look forward to coming to work every day." He also said that he would take steps to improve relations between the police department and the diverse membership of the community, stressing the importance of integrity.
Chief Michael Patton is a positive role model for all communities across America. He has strived to develop Dr. Martin L. King, Jr.'s, beloved community in the West Bloomfield community and beyond.
2014 - United We Walk XX"United We Remember, Celebrate, Act!"
Mr. Wesley Berry, Jr.
Wesley Berry, Jr., who is the owner of Wesley Berry Flowers and Flowers Delivery Express, is known for his involvement and support of community programs in West Bloomfield and surrounding areas. Wes is both personally and professionally committed to actions that year-round embrace caring, fairness, citizenship, respect, responsibility and trustworthiness. He can always be counted on to provide floral arrangements to service clubs or organizations, being either youth or senior-citizen focused. Like Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., Wes has committed himself to creating harmony among people. For the past 12 years he has given away over 240,000 roses on "Good Neighbor Day" in September and on Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., Day.
Wesley Berry, Jr., served as President of the Optimist Club and is a member of the Rotary Club. He has served on the Board of Directors of the West Bloomfield Educational Foundation, Youth Assistance, and the Henry Ford Hospital Community Board. Wesley Berry, Jr., has been honored with the "Ring of Hope Award" for supporting programs for Autism. In 2012, he also was recognized by the Michigan District Optimist as the "Corporate Optimist of the Year" for his ongoing support for youth programs.
2013 - United We Walk XIX"Unity in the Community"
Mr. Brian Flaggs
Brian Flaggs exemplifies the United We Walk Community Leader model, because he lives the guidelines on a daily basis. Mr. Flaggs serves the Greater West Bloomfield area as an active parent and leader in a diverse school district who gives time, attention and resources to supporting all children. Through civic, social and religious organizations, he demonstrates respect for race, religion and ethnicity. Mr. Flaggs actively has served on virtually every committee relating to children, working to improve the effects and results of each mission.
As President of the Optimist Club of West Bloomfield, Mr. Flaggs single-handedly grew the club to include prospective members that reflect the diversity of our area.
Mr. Flaggs created a Saturday morning tutoring and mentoring program for at-risk African Americans, improving the academic standing of struggling students, while empowering and motivating them. Grades and attitudes toward school and relationships improved significantly.
Mr. Flaggs chaired the diversity-minded 18th Annual United We Walk, creating new energy and interest from committee members as well as other community leaders.
Most recently, he co-spearheaded an effort to begin a Junior Optimist Club for high school students with great success. To witness Brian Flaggs interacting with kids is a marvel in itself; they watch him intently, respect him, and most importantly, they are seized with interest as they listen to every word he speaks. Brian Flaggs is a teacher, a mentor, a doer, and a visionary who treats everyone with respect, fairness, and inclusion. He is someone who truly cares and works for the betterment of all society.
2012 - United We Walk XVIII"United We Build the Dream"
Mr. Dan Navarre
Dan Navarre's community leadership is unparalleled. Under his guidance, the West Bloomfield Parks and Recreation Department has continued to support all segments of the greater West Bloomfield Community with innovative programs and collaborative partnerships. Programs for senior citizens as well as youth have given residents a positive, social outlet and a sense of community pride. The partnerships forged with the Youth Coalition, school districts, library, the Optimists, and others show his endearing dedication to this community. The renovation of Marshbank Park has provided a world-class public facility for all residences. Mr. Navarre has successfully championed the purchase of the West Bloomfield/Commerce railroad to convert into a walking/jogging trail for all residents to enjoy. Dan is a former President of the Optimist Club of West Bloomfield and a dedicated member of several community organizations. Congratulations, Dan Navarre, for being selected as the Community Leader for 2012.
2011 - United We Walk XVII"United We Remember and Move Forward"
Ms. Clara N. Bohrer
The West Bloomfield Township Public Library is the 2011 recipient of the Community Leader Recognition Award. The West Bloomfield Township Public Library has been named one of 10 recipients of the 2010 National Medal for Museum and Library Service, the nation's highest honor for museums and libraries. The annual award, made by the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) since 1994, recognizes institutions (5 libraries and 5 museums) for outstanding social, educational, environmental, or economic contributions to their communities. Library Director, Clara N. Bohrer, Library Board President, Ken Macon and community representative Cameron Thomas-Shah received the prestigious National Medal Award in December 2010 at the White House. The Library was selected based on innovative public service, extensive outreach and collaboration with community partners, and positive impact on those served.
2010 - United We Walk XVI"United We Can"
Ms. Julie Rodecker Holly
Within the West Bloomfield School District, Ms. Holly has been instrumental in the funding and coor-dination of major events and programs that continue to benefit our students and district residents, some of these include Challenge Day, our Student Mentoring Program for freshmen, WeB leaders, Green School Garden, West Bloomfield Education Foundation, the Bond Community, Band Boosters, and PTO. Outside of these walls, Ms. Rodecker Holly is affiliated with the DeRoy Testimentary Foundation. This foundation is focused on funding youth, arts, culture, health, and community programs. A motivated, bright, and exceptional woman, we feel that Julie Rodecker Holly best embodies the award's distinction: she is a citizen we desire to commend for giving so selflessly to enhance our community.
2009 - United We Walk XV"United We Live"
Dr. JoAnn Andrees, Superintendent of West Bloomfield Schools
Dr. JoAnn Andrees, the first winner of the United We Walk Community Leader Recognition Award, was, among many other accomplishments, fundamental to the launch of the first United We Walk Martin Luther King, Jr. Day celebration. She is the two-time superintendent of West Bloomfield schools and has also spearheaded several diversity-minded initiatives within her district, including the Diversity and Stakeholders' Task Forces. The United We Walk Committee desired to honor Dr. Andrees for her constant and consistent contributions to West Bloomfield's social and educational community.
The World Leaders Gallery was born in 2004 as a part of the 10th Anniversary of the United We Walk Celebration. Our student organization, S.H.A.R.E (Students Helping Accepting Reaching Ethnicity), wanted to create a forum in which students could recognize those leaders who had devoted their lives to the causes of protecting freedom, fighting for justice, and working toward peace. The gallery features 8 X 10 portraits of each of the selected leaders and was unveiled in January 2004 as a part of the candlelight vigil. Our goal was to add another leader each year in order to grow the gallery and enhance its effect.
Selecting the first group of gallery members was extremely rewarding. Each student drew on his or her own cultural background to identify world leaders that should be featured. Those selected in the first year represented a diverse group of individuals who embodied the ideals that the gallery was designed to highlight. Among them were Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., Mohandas K. Gandhi, Mother Teresa, and President Lyndon B. Johnson.
The gallery serves as a living testament to the importance of diversity and the contributions and sacrifices that great leaders have made internationally in the ongoing fight for justice and peace. It is very gratifying to see that this important gallery will remain open year after year and that students will continue to elect additional members as a part of the United We Walk Celebration. At this defining moment in our country's history, it is crucial that we continue to identify and recognize those individuals who have set a positive example so that we can learn from them and become the kind of leaders that will work toward positive social change.
Michael Rubyan, Past Student Co-Chair, University of Michigan Senior, Pre-Med Studies, January 2009
Twenty-six World Leaders in the cause of Unity and Peace are honored, the twenty-six honorees include: Abraham Lincoln, Thurgood Marshall, Mohandas K. Gandhi, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., Lyndon Baines Johnson, Mother Teresa, Father William Cunningham, Jimmy Carter, Menachem Begin, Anwar El Sadat, 14th Dalai Lama, Nelson Mandela, Shirley Chisholm, Rosa Parks, Coretta Scott King, Paul Rusesabagina, Oprah Winfrey, Barack Obama, Alice Paul, Maya Angelou, Archbishop Desmond Tutu, Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, Justice Sandra Day O'Connor, Malala Yousafzai, Carter Godwin Woodson, and Dr. Mona Hanna-Attisha
2017 Written Expression Winner
United We Walk XXIII "His Dream Raises Us Up"
Sunday, January 15, 2017
2016 Written Expression Winner
United We Walk XXII "Making His Dream Our Reality"
Sunday, January 17, 2016
2015 Written Expression Winner
United We Walk XXI "Mentoring for Social Justice & Peace"
Sunday, January 18, 2015
2014 Oratory/Written Expression Winner
United We Walk XX - "United We Remember, Celebrate, Act!"
Sunday, January 19, 2014
2013 Oratory/Written Expression Winner
United We Walk XIX - "Unity in the Community"
Sunday, January 20, 2013
2012 Written Expression Winner
United We Walk XVIII - "United We Build the Dream"
Sunday, January 15, 2012
2011 Written Expression Winners
United We Walk XVII - "United We Remember and Move Forward"
Sunday, January 16, 2011
2010 Written Expression Winners
United We Walk XVI - "United We Can"
Sunday, January 17, 2010
2021 United We Walk Community Project: Blessings in a Backpack
THANK YOU From United We Walk and Blessings in a Backpack, West Bloomfield/Keego Harbor Chapter
Thank you for your generous donations during the virtual United We Walk event sponsored by the Greater West Bloomfield Cable Communications Commission and Civic Center TV on Sunday, January 17, 2021, from 2:30-3:30 pm. Kathy Sheiko, former West Bloomfield School District, Sheiko Elementary School principal who served as a 2012 United We Walk Adult Co-Chair, is the chairperson for Blessings in a Backpack, West Bloomfield/Keego Harbor Chapter. The West Bloomfield/Keego Harbor chapter of Blessings in a Backpack feeds 10,800 school district students during a school year. It takes $110.00 per month to feed just one student. Donations allow this organization to continue the work of providing meals for disadvantaged students in efforts to eliminate hunger on weekends and to remove barriers to academic success. Thank you for making a wonderful difference in the lives of students.
"According to Kathy Sheiko, "At the last count we had received (from the 2021 United We Walk event donors) over $2,500.00 to use to buy the groceries to send home six non-perishable meals to the West Bloomfield School District students/families each weekend of the school year." Every contribution is tax-deductible. Blessings in a Backpack, West Bloomfield/Keego Harbor Chapter, is mailing a personal thank you letter to every donor.
United We Walk Community Partners
- Hadassah - Greater Detroit
- Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc., Iota Rho Lambda Chapter, Oakland County
- Rotary Club of West Bloomfield
- West Bloomfield Interact Club
- Pine Hill Congregational Church
- West Bloomfield Clergy Association and Community Forum
- West Bloomfield Parks and Recreation Commission
- West Bloomfield Police Department
- West Bloomfield Police Foundation
- West Bloomfield Township
- West Bloomfield Township Public Library
United We Walk Sponsors
Access sponsor or community partner website by clicking its logo below:
If you donate today, your contribution will benefit Blessings in a Backpack. Your donation is tax-deductible.
To DONATE, click Blessings in a Backpack link above, scroll down to select Donate, then select West Bloomfield/Keego Harbor School District.
If you are giving an In-Kind Donation, please include a brief description of your In-Kind Goods or Services.
Please make checks payable to WBSD-UWW
Please mail your donation to:
Mrs. Kendra Montante
Public Relations and Marketing Coordinator
West Bloomfield School District
Administrative and Community Service Building
5810 Commerce Road
West Bloomfield, MI 48324
Thank you for supporting United We Walk.
Levels of Giving
- $1,000 - World Leader Champion
- $500 - Community Champion
- $250 - Peace Champion
- $100 - Diversity Champion
- $50 - Freedom Champion
- $25 - Unity Champion
- In-Kind Donation
In honor of Dr. King's 90th birthday celebration on January 15, 2019, the Related Links & Websites tab has been renamed, The Beloved Community Links, and now has an expanded scope.
The Beloved Community, Excerpt From thekingcenter.org:
Dr. King’s Beloved Community is a global vision, in which all people can share in the wealth of the earth. In The Beloved Community, poverty, hunger and homelessness will not be tolerated because international standards of human decency will not allow it. Racism and all forms of discrimination, bigotry and prejudice will be replaced by an all-inclusive spirit of sisterhood and brotherhood. In The Beloved Community, international disputes will be resolved by peaceful conflict- resolution and reconciliation of adversaries, instead of military power. Love and trust will triumph over fear and hatred. Peace with justice will prevail over war and military conflict.
Dr. King’s Beloved Community was not devoid of interpersonal, group or international conflict. Instead he recognized that conflict was an inevitable part of the human experience. But he believed that conflicts could be resolved peacefully and adversaries could be reconciled through a mutual, determined commitment to nonviolence. No conflict, he believed, need erupt in violence. And all conflicts in The Beloved Community should end with reconciliation of adversaries cooperating together in a spirit of friendship and goodwill.
As early as 1956, Dr. King spoke of The Beloved Community as the end goal of nonviolent boycotts. As he said in a speech at a victory rally following the announcement of a favorable U.S. Supreme Court Decision desegregating the seats on Montgomery’s busses, “the end is reconciliation; the end is redemption; the end is the creation of The Beloved Community. It is this type of spirit and this type of love that can transform opponents into friends. It is this type of understanding goodwill that will transform the deep gloom of the old age into the exuberant gladness of the new age. It is this love which will bring about miracles in the hearts of men.”
An ardent student of the teachings of Mohandas K. Gandhi, Dr. King was much impressed with the Mahatma’s befriending of his adversaries, most of whom professed profound admiration for Gandhi’s courage and intellect. Dr. King believed that the age-old tradition of hating one’s opponents was not only immoral, but bad strategy which perpetuated the cycle of revenge and retaliation. Only nonviolence, he believed, had the power to break the cycle of retributive violence and create lasting peace through reconciliation.
“I Have a Dream”
Museums, West Bloomfield Township Public Library, Local:
Chaldean Cultural Center
Holocaust Memorial Center
Museum of African American History
West Bloomfield Township Public Library (MLK and Diversity Books/e-Books/CDs/DVDs)
National Civil Rights Museum, The King Center and More:
National Civil Rights Museum (at the Lorraine Motel in Memphis, TN)
The King Center, Late Mrs. Coretta Scott King was Founding President, Chair, CEO, Atlanta GA.
“Poverty, Hunger and Homelessness Will Not Be Tolerated”:
Grace Centers of Hope (Homeless Shelter, Women’s Rehabilitation Program, Vocational Education, Men’s Program, Children’s Program, etc.)
Focus Hope (Food Bank, Vocational Education Training, Volunteer Opportunities)
Forgotten Harvest (Food Bank) (Volunteer Opportunities)
Gleaners (Food Bank) (Volunteer Opportunities)
Worthwhile, Established, MLK Day, Events To Consider in Oakland County, MI:
(West Bloomfield, MI) - MLK Day Events at WBTPL
(Walled Lake, MI) (Facebook Event Updates)