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Founders Day 2005: Commemorating History, Leadership & Progresss

By monét cooper

Amid the celebration of Black History Month, it is only right for Morehouse College to have a party of its own as it commemorates the 138th year since the school’s inception.

The annual Founder’s Week festivities are February 17 to 20 and, as always, the week is filled with a host of activities to engage faculty, staff, students, alumni and friends of the College in honoring the past and the promise for the future.

Family Week and Prospective Students Open House are taking place during Founder’s Week, but the centerpiece of the commemoration is the 17th annual “A Candle in the Dark” Gala on Saturday, Feb. 19. Henry M. Goodgame ‘84, director of Alumni Relations and chairman of the Founder’s Week activities, explained that an underlying theme to the Founder’s Week celebration is based on a commitment to the arts. From the Founder’s Day Concert featuring husband-and-wife singers Kenny Lattimore and Chanté Moore to the Glee Club Reunion and Spring Concert, Morehouse continues to “Celebrate the Arts.”

“This year, Founder’s Week will touch nearly every [area] of the arts,” said Goodgame. “We are excited to have the participation of alumnus and film director Shelton “Spike” Lee ‘79 and to honor one of the true icons of American music, Berry Gordy, with the Candle for Lifetime Achievement in Arts and Entertainment.”

Lee, a College trustee who visited campus earlier this month to release DVDs of his films “She Hate Me” and the cult classic “School Daze,” is the speaker for the Founder’s Day convocation on Thursday, Feb. 17. On that same day, presidential citations will be given to John R. Silber, president emeritus of Boston University, and Charles David “C.D.” Moody ‘78, president and CEO of C.D. Moody Construction Company Inc.

“Reflections of Excellence,” a program in which audience members ply the 2005 Candle and Bennie award recipients with questions, will be held in King Chapel Feb.19, at 11 a.m. Steve Crocker ‘83, a news anchor in Birmingham, Ala., will moderate the discussion as honorees explain how their triumphs and challenges have led to success.

While some in the Morehouse community are observing Founder’s Week, others are arriving to celebrate Family Weekend. Parents and extended family members of the men of Morehouse will come together on the College campus for the four-day event. The theme for Family Weekend is “Developing Community in the Academic Village,” with a formal welcome to Morehouse provided by the annual President’s Reception, hosted by the president and his wife, Shirley.

Kenyatta Shamburger, director of Student Life and Planning, said this year the President’s Reception also will “Celebrate the Arts” with a down-home jook-joint theme. For the first time, students will perform for the reception. The student-jazz group Jaspects has been hired to play during the evening.

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