One Of The World’s Most Influential Women Leaders ?? “I am not a symbol, I am an activist.” Coretta King; wife and widow of famed spokesperson and leader in the Civil Rights Movement, Martin Luther King, Jr. was far more than a helpmate, a seasoned civil rights activist in her own right who created her own legacy, Coretta King’s contribution towards the struggle for social justice and human rights cannot but be applauded.
Coretta Scott King, born April 27, 1927, in Perry County, Alabama to parents, Obadiah and Bernice Scott, farmers, graduated valedictorian from Lincoln High School. She bagged an B.A. in music and education from Antioch College in Yellow Springs, Ohio, further going on to study concert singing at Boston’s New England Conservatory of Music, where she earned a degree in voice and violin.
While in Boston she met Martin Luther King, Jr. who was then studying for his doctorate in systematic theology at Boston University. They fell in love and got married on June 18, 1953. A year later the newly weds moved to Montgomery, Alabama.
By 1955, Coretta had gained popularity in the world stage as wife of the foremost activist Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and an undaunted voice of the American Civil Rights Movement.
Coretta King’s fire towards fighting for social justice, peace, women equality, education, health care, lgbt, against racism endeared her to the spotlight.
After her husband’s assassination in 1968, Mrs. King devoted great energy towards continuing her husband’s legacy; building and developing programs -founding the Martin Luther King, Jr. Center for Nonviolent Social Change in Atlanta, GA., was also instrumental in the fifteen-year fight to have her husband’s birthday instituted as a national holiday.
The activist also made history as the first woman to deliver the class day address at Harvard.
Mrs. King’s contributions were highly recognised; honorary degrees from many institutions, including Princeton University, Duke University, amongst others, including Four Freedom Award, the Key of Life award, a Candace etc. ?