As a child I remember sitting on the floor of my parent’s bedroom with my siblings, being made to watch black and white videos of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Hearing his powerful speeches.

Seeing millions of his followers (before social media was around to increase notoriety and reach). Being amazed and moved by his passion and tenacity. And yet, still not fully grasping just how much we needed him. We needed him then because of what he stood for; equality, transformation, respect, leadership - and we still need those qualities today. As we celebrate Martin Luther King Day 2022 and think about its significance to each of us, we need to also ask the important questions.

Where are we as a nation?

How far do we have left to go to achieve those qualities that Dr. King preached?

I continue to strive to represent for people who came before me, like Dr. King, for those individuals who marched and sacrificed, and for all the brown girls and boys who will pave their own way after me. As co-lead for African Americans in Novo Nordisk (AAiNN), I see the need for continued commitment in driving diversity, inclusion, equity & belonging. To make a real difference and create the change we wish to see, we need to come together and work toward common goals. I am using this holiday day off to be a “day on”. A day of service and commitment to others and standing in the gap to help those in need.

My family and I volunteered for Cradles to Crayons to provide children with essential items to help them thrive in their communities. I encourage you to get involved in your community and embody what Dr. King stood for. Find a way to volunteer and serve. Speak up for someone. And don’t just do it today, make it a way of living.

“Life’s most persistent and urgent question is, ‘What are you doing for others?’” - MLK Jr.