Three winners emerged out of more than 30 youth displaying their creative talents and public-speaking skills during the 2016 Essay, Oratory and Art Competition sponsored by the Southern Christian Leadership Conference of Southern California (SCLC-SC) on January 12.
The first place oratorical winners were Randall King, a middle school student at Wilder Preparatory Academy and Kristian Emel, who attends Loyola High School. Jordan Malbrew landed the first place prize in the art category.
All of the participants addressed the theme, “Bending the Arc and Breaking Barriers,” through speeches and art projects. In both areas, the young people revealed their clear grasp of current issues affecting people of color such as injustice, crime, poverty, immigration and politics.
The Rev. William Smart, SCLC-SC president/CEO, noted, “It shows that we have a generation coming up that is preparing to do outstanding things in America and the world.”
Remarking on the audience and multi-cultural contestants, Juanita Holcombe-Hamilton, coordinator of the art segment, said, “I’m very pleased with the turnout and the support of teachers, parents and grandparents. Also, I’m pleased at the diversity of the contestants. All races are represented.”
The judges for the competition were Karen Blackwell, Nestle USA diversity manager; Ed Daniels, retired director of The Soccer Club; Char Bland, CEO of CharMel Corporation; Jackie Dupont-Walker, MTA commissioner; Grace Goodson, creative stylist; Henderson Maddox, writer/filmmaker; and artists Johnathan Green, Michael Holden and Sinthia St. James.
Jamie Wright, Esq., is the creator and chair of the SCLC-SC Essay program as well as the founder and chair of the organization’s Emerging Leaders Committee.
The youth competition was part of SCLS-SC’s 2016 King Legacy Festival. The event sponsors were Northrop Grumman, Toyota Motor Sales USA, Inc., ABC 7, and SEIU Local 721.
To learn more, visit sclc-sc.org