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Moderator of 33rd annual MLK Breakfast hopes to share lessons from Dr. King

Hundreds are expected at Monday's event at the Minneapolis Convention Center, which serves as a fundraiser for the college education of underrepresented students.

MINNEAPOLIS — For the first time in two years, a major Twin Cities event honoring Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. is back in person. Monday, the 33rd annual Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Holiday Breakfast will be held at the Minneapolis Convention Center. The event serves as a fundraiser for the UNCF Twin Cities MLK Legacy Scholarship Fund, which supports the college careers of young students of color.

While tickets to the in-person event are sold out, you can purchase online tickets for $30 to stream the celebration virtually while supporting the fundraiser. The program will begin at 8 a.m. Monday morning and go until 9:30 a.m.

This year, the event's theme is "Keep Moving Forward," and features Valerie Jarrett, CEO of the Obama Foundation, as the keynote speaker. Abou Amara, Vice President of the Minnesota Association of Black Lawyers, will serve as the moderator.

"I feel very lucky and fortunate that I was invited to do this," Amara said. "My background is a combination of law and politics. So, on the political side, I’ve done a lot of the work that Valerie Jarrett’s done in Minnesota. But on the legal side, I’ve done a lot of civil rights work, class action work, and so the combination of those two things... need to be discussed if we want to make change in our society."

Amara said he hopes the event honors Dr. King's legacy by sharing his teachings, with the vision to "empower and equip people in the room, that once they leave, they have instructions, details, thoughts, ideas about how to make progress in the Twin Cities."

He acknowledged that the Twin Cities has been through difficult times in the past several years and looks forward to an opportunity to unify.

"The Twin Cities is going through a rapid transformation," Amara said. "The murder of George Floyd, a global pandemic, violence in certain parts of the community, and I’m hoping this is kind of  an opportunity to...create community again and think how can we move forward."

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