The “2016 Spirit of Martin Luther King Community Service Award” was given to 2 long-time Manhattan volunteers and social justice advocates.

Dr. Zelia Wiley

Dr. Zelia Z. Wiley received the award at the annual Martin Luther King Community Celebration this past Sunday at Fire Station Headquarters.

According to the MLK Jr. Memorial Committee, Wiley serves as the Interim Associate Provost for Office of Diversity at Kansas State University as well as the Assistant Dean for Diversity in the College of Agriculture.She has worked with and mentored hundreds of students as they journey through college.

Locally, she works to create a community of inclusion and raises awareness about issues
of diversity in our community. She has served on the Juneteenth Committee and has
supported the Family in Transition (FIT) Closet and clothing exchange, the Douglass
Center, the Kansas Black Farmers Association, the City Parks and Recreation program,
and most specifically programs with her church, the historic Bethel AME.

Rev. Caela Simmons-Wood

The MLK Jr. Memorial Committee also presented the “2016 Spirit of Martin Luther King Community Service Award,” to Reverend Caela Simmons-Wood who serves as pastor of First Congregational United Church of Christ in Manhattan.

She advocated for a change to Manhattan’s non-discrimination ordinance adding protection for those with LGBTQ identities, and she has has joined efforts associated with the Black Lives Matter movement to create safe spaces in the community.

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Source: KMAN Local News