Columnist Janice Gilmore to speak at MLK commemoration

by Jo Giles, UNMC public affairs | January 05, 2009

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Janice Gilmore, a columnist for the Omaha World-Herald, will deliver a commemorative address during the annual Martin Luther King Jr. Day event at UNMC on Jan. 19.
Omaha World-Herald columnist Janice Gilmore will deliver a commemorative address on the UNMC campus on Monday, Jan. 19 to honor slain civil rights leader, Martin Luther King, Jr.

Gilmore's speech, which is sponsored by UNMC and The Nebraska Medical Center, will be in the Truhlsen Campus Events Center on the first floor of the Sorrell Center.

"We are pleased to bring a featured columnist and native Omahan to campus," said Myrna Newland, M.D., director of UNMC's Equity Office and coordinator of the Martin Luther King Day Commemoration committee. "Ms. Gilmore has contributed to our community with stirring words and opinions for more than a decade and will no doubt deliver a compelling speech to our medical center campus."

The annual address is regularly one of the city's best attended events on Martin Luther King Jr. Day. This year, the event starts at noon, is free and open to the public.

Gilmore was born and raised in Omaha. She graduated from North High School, received a bachelor of science degree in education and a master of science degree in education administration, both from the University of Nebraska at Omaha.

"Ms. Gilmore has contributed to our community with stirring words and opinions for more than a decade and will no doubt deliver a compelling speech to our medical center campus."

Myrna Newland, M.D.

Gilmore had a 31-year career in the Omaha Public School system at a teacher, assistant principal and principal. She writes a column for the Omaha World-Herald and Revive!, an African-American lifestyle and community empowerment magazine. In addition, she wrote an inspirational children's book about Omaha and book about grief for PULSE, a group assisting families of homicide victims.

A role model for women of all ages, Gilmore is a member of Concerned and Caring Educators, NSEAR, Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, the Urban League and the NAACP. She also is a board member for Project Hope, African-American Empowerment, Inc. and the community advisory board of Bright Futures Foundation.

Gilmore has received several awards and recognitions including the College of Education University of Nebraska at Omaha Distinguished Alumni Award, YWCA Tribute to Women, Viking of Distinction and Omaha Schools Foundation Award.

A well-sought after motivational speaker, she titled her Martin Luther King Jr. Day speech, "Has the dream been realized?"

Gilmore said she is grateful for the opportunity to share her thoughts on this historic celebration.

"While many in our community are excited about the upcoming change in our country's administration, the timeliness of Dr. King's birthday is a great opportunity for reflection," Gilmore said. "I am honored to have a voice in my community."