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    Morehouse College Returns for an In-Person Celebration of Founders Week 2022 with Honorees from Music, Business, Media, Advocacy, and Education

    February 14, 2022

    Morehouse College, the nation’s only HBCU dedicated to developing and educating men, returns with a hybrid in-person and online celebration of its 155th anniversary. The annual Founder’s Week activities reflect on the history and legacy of the College and honors the work and lives of the day’s leading changemakers. More information can be found at  

    Since its founding in 1989, the "A Candle in the Dark" Gala has become one of the nation's premier events that to celebrate African American achievement and raise much-needed scholarship funds for deserving students. This exceptional evening of elegance and accomplishment has honored more than 221 luminaries over the past 34 years. The black-tie affair highlights Morehouse College’s mission of producing leaders, pays tribute to nationally acclaimed Black leaders who are considered giants in their respective fields, and showcases the talents and oratorical skills of Morehouse students. The Candle Award recognizes outstanding non-alumni who are exemplary in their professions and are committed to excellence, community service, and leadership, the values taught at Morehouse College. The Dr. Benjamin Elijah Mays "Bennie" Award, named for one of the College’s most revered presidents, is one of the highest honors that Morehouse bestows on its alumni. 

    Founder’s Week kicks off with Founders Day Convocation on Thursday, February 17, 2021 at 10:45 a.m. in Forbes Arena with speaker Rev. Dr. Otis Moss III, class of 1992, a senior pastor of Trinity United Church of Christ in Chicago who is also a poet, activist, author and filmmaker with an eye toward justice and equality, as evidenced through the gospel of Jesus Christ. On Thursday evening at 5:30 p.m. in the Shirley Massey Executive Conference Center, a “Legacy in Dialogue” with Rev. Dr. Otis Moss Jr., class of 1956, and Rev. Dr. Otis Moss III will occur, facilitated by Rev. Dr. Lawrence Carter Sr., dean of the Martin Luther King International Chapel at Morehouse College

    On Saturday, February 19 at 6 p.m., the 34th Annual “A Candle in the Dark” Gala, will be hosted by Clifton Powell, an NAACP Image Award winning actor, at the Hyatt Regency Atlanta. The 2022 honorees are CNN contributor and public policy advocate Bakari Sellers, Esq. (Class of 2003); Grammy Award winner Paul "PJ" Morton (Class of 2003); National Urban League President and CEO Marc Morial; entrepreneur Judson Willie Pickard, Jr.; RECOGNIZE co-founder Charles Phillips; Real Times Media president William Pickard, Ph.D.; and educator John K. Haynes, Ph.D.(Class of 1964). National correspondent for CNN Darryl Forges will host Reflections of Excellence, a discussion with each honoree, at 11 a.m. on Saturday, February 19 for a student audience on the Morehouse campus.

    The week will conclude at the Shirley Massey Executive Conference Center with a Vesper Hour Worship Service on Sunday, February 20, at 5:30 p.m., featuring Dr. Jeffrey Haggray, executive director of American Baptist Home Mission Societies (ABHMS) and CEO of Judson Press. Haggray serves on several non-profit boards including Baptist Joint Committee for Religious Liberty, Andover Newton Seminary at Yale, and represents American Baptists at the Baptist World Alliance, Bread for the World, and Church World Service.  He regularly engages in matters of justice with faith leaders representing mainstream denominations and faith-based organizations in the USA.

    For a complete list of Founder’s Week activities, visit


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