Dedicated to preserving and advancing the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
- A recognized national leader in promoting and honoring Dr. King’s legacy through annual celebrations and activities
- An established and registered nonprofit organization that enjoys city and county co-sponsorship of special events
- A regional leader in promoting and honoring diversity through programming and activities
- An organization able to leverage funding for annual programs and activities through sponsorships and working partnerships.
The Martin Luther King, Jr. Association of Asheville & Buncombe County, Inc. is a registered nonprofit organization chartered in the State of North Carolina in the year 2000. The Association has a board of directors comprising no fewer than seven and no more than fifteen individuals, serving rotating three-year terms. The standard number of directors has been nine, three chosen each year for a three-year term.
The purposes of the MLK Association are described in the Corporate Charter:
“A. To provide an association made up of individuals and organizations interested in preserving and advancing the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. by promoting goodwill and mutual respect among all peoples.
B. To build meaningful alliances in Buncombe County and Western North Carolina with other organizations and individuals in support of the principles of Dr. King’s teachings; and with the Martin Luther King, Jr. Association of North Carolina, Inc. and other MLK associations throughout the State of North Carolina and the United States, to coordinate, advance, and further the efforts of this Corporation.
C. To celebrate the life and teachings of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. each year by hosting public events coinciding with the national holiday honoring his birth; and to sponsor, produce, and present community events offering educational, cultural, economic, diversity, and leadership opportunities for citizens of Buncombe County and Western North Carolina.
D. To provide a forum through which teachers, students, and members of the general public may obtain information and teaching on social and diversity issues and for individual and community mediation and facilitation.
E. To promote the development of character, integrity, leadership, and scholarship of young people of Buncombe County and Western North Carolina so that they will become better equipped to understand diversity issues and accept the mantle of community leadership.”
Each year the Association forms a committee to organize the Annual Prayer Breakfast and smaller committees, each led by a board member, to plan the other related events of the King Holiday celebrations. The committee includes representatives of area faith communities, public and private schools, Buncombe County and the City of Asheville, and other organizations and businesses. Committee remembers sell advertising for the Souvenir Journal distributed at the Breakfast, arrange logistics, recruit volunteers, and solicit nominations for annual awards.
The Association recognizes both an adult and a youth winner of the Martin Luther King Award each year; offers college scholarship support to deserving Youth Award nominees; and from time to time honors a citizen with the Community Humanitarian Award.