This Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. (MLK) Day, we celebrate how far we’ve come as a society, while continuing to strategize and engage in steps that propel us all forward. To commemorate Dr. King’s legacy, my colleagues and I attended the MLK Diversity Celebration in Jackson, Michigan.
The impact of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., from generation to generation
Most of the morning’s program was presented by three men from the Willis family – John, Jay, and Khari; each one focused on an aspect of the messages and legacy MLK left behind.
John had his son, Khari, and a middle schooler compete to hit five chest-high basketball dribbles first. Though his son was older and a former professional athlete, the middle schooler beat him. What we didn’t know initially was that Khari’s ball was flat. As John put it, “One ball didn’t have what it needed to come back up.” Sometimes, we don’t realize how not having crucial resources can make the difference in someone’s ability to succeed.
John’s son, Jay, shared the MLK quote, “Dreamers live with their eyes closed; visionaries live with their eyes open.” He reminded us that affecting change is not about big grandiose plans – it’s about steady, consistent work, a constant march for the greater good. He also discussed the importance of starting now. Hope is helpful, but it’s most important to start “putting legs to our dreams”.
Khari talked about how Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s iconic “I Have a Dream” speech was not focused on himself; it was about setting good things into motion, though you may not be around to see the full impact. As Jay put it, “If I believe in something greater than myself, how could it be about me?”
APHW’s alignment with the work & words of MLK
The men from the Willis family reminded us how vital it is continue to do the work that keeps communities strong, which is something America’s Preferred Home Warranty (APHW) does daily. Some of our current employees and alumni, like Arlene in the photo above (left) regularly showcase to me (right) and everyone around them, through their dedicated service, what it means to leave a legacy for the next generation.
APHW has been active in neighborhoods nationwide, giving homeowners and real estate professionals the increased capacity to protect their investments (home or business), and we’ve also made it a point to reach as many individuals as possible via our collaborations with builders and the Latino community. APHW has been doing this work for over 20 years, and we’ll keep “putting legs to our dreams” for generations to come.