Each year CEDO in partnership with ECHO host the Martin Luther King Jr. (MLK) Community Celebration. This year, we are proud to add the addition of the newly formed Racial Equity, Inclusion, & Belonging Department of Burlington within the celebration of this event. This event is part of a nationwide initiative to make MLK Day a “day on, not a day off” in which communities engage their citizens in meaningful service and reflection. Due to COVID, this year looks a little different. We will still be highlighting Restorative Practices, Immigration, Culture and Identity through family-friendly take-home activity kits, videos, online events, and virtual panel discussions. Don't sit out this day off. Come celebrate and learn with us!

“Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.”

—Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.


MLK DAY 2021 Event Schedule

City Hosted Events

Dr. Rev. Martin Luther King Day Panel and Community Discussion on Reparations 

Hosted by the Community Economic Development Office (CEDO) & the Department of Racial Equity, Inclusion, & Belonging (REIB)
Monday, January 18, 2021, 11:00 am- 12:30pm

Join us to learn more about Reparations and Reconciliation. Engage with a panel of representatives from other cities experiencing their own Reparation and Reconciliation discussions and legislative actions, academics active in this evolving field, and Burlington staff working to move our process forward.  Panel conversation and questions from the public about Reparations on Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr Day. 

Facilitator: Dr. Wanda Heading Grant - UVM Vice President, Diversity, Equity and Inclusion 

  • Tyeastia Green - City of Burlington Director, REIB
  • Stephanie Seguino - Professor, Dept of Economics, UVM 
  • Shawndell Burney-Speaks - Mayor’s Office of Community Relations, Providence R.I.  
  • Bishop Jefffery A. Williams - Pastor of Kings Cathedral, Providence R.I.  
  • Keith Young - Former Councilor, City of Asheville, NC 


The City of Burlington officially formed a Task Force to study Reparations in Burlington when Mayor Miro Weinberger signed City Council Resolution 7.06 on August 18th, 2020. This resolution formally established the task force and charged it with studying a proposal for reparations in Burlington and considering an official apology from the City of Burlington for the Institution of Slavery. With this task force, Burlington joins Providence, Ashville, and Evanston as the only four cities in the United States to explore reparations for the Institution of Slavery. Visit the Reparations Task Force Page for more information. 


BTV StoryWalk at Leddy Park

Hosted by the Fletcher Free Library, Burlington City Arts, and Burlington Parks, Recreation, and Waterfront

The book featured is All Because You Matter by Tami Charles, illustrated by Bryan Collier. 

Enjoy the natural beauty of Burlington, have an adventure, and learn. All Because You Matter is not just a parent’s love letter to her Black son; it is also an empowering story of heritage and hope. In the author’s note, Tami Charles shares she wrote the story to, "provide parents with a starting point for conversations about the racial climate in our country today". The storywalk is available to view starting at the Leddy Park Arena. Visit the library's information page to learn more.  

Find the Storywalk


My Brother's Keeper: An Interview with Tyeastia Green - Director of Racial Equity, Inclusion & Belonging

Made in collaboration with CEDO, REIB and Channel 17  (Town Meeting TV)

My Brother's Keeper student interns Jeremia, Olivier, and Boniface interview the new Director of Racial Equity, Inclusion & Belonging for the City of Burlington, Tyeastia Green, about the work she is undertaking to make the city a place where BIPOC Burlingtonians can live, grow and thrive.


Community Events

MLK Celebration at ECHO


Hosted by ECHO Leahy Center for Lake Champlain

Every year ECHO celebrates MLK Jr. Day with free admission and family-friendly scheduled activities throughout the day in partnership with CEDO. Due to COVID, this year looks a little different. ECHO will still offer free admission throughout the day, but in-person events and ticketing capacity is limited. Online tickets are required. Click the link below for more information on their event offerings and free MLK-themed art activities available to be picked up at ECHO and other locations.


Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Remembrance


Hosted by The Greater Burlington Multicultural Resource Center

Recording of Event on January 17th, 2021

Keynote Speaker: Tim Wise

Tim Wise is among the most prominent anti-racist writers and educators in the United States. He has spent the past 25 years speaking to audiences in all 50 states, on over 1,500 college and high school campuses, at hundreds of professional and academic conferences, and to community groups across the country.

Slave Health Deficit: The Journey to Health Parity

Hosted by the University of Vermont

Wednesday, January 20, 2021, 5:30 pm
Reservation required

Keynote Speaker: Leon McDougle, MD, MPH

Leon McDougle, M.D., M.P.H., is the 1st African American Professor with tenure in The Ohio State University Department of Family Medicine and the 1st Chief Diversity Officer for the OSU Wexner Medical Center. Dr. McDougle was installed on August 3, 2020 as the 121st President of the National Medical Association (NMA), , which serves as the oldest and largest collective voice for African American physicians in their effort to eliminate health inequalities.