Los Angeles Honors Legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

L.A. County Fed Executive Secretary-Treasurer Rusty Hicks, keynote speaker Bryan Stevenson, Senator Kamala Harris, Supervisor Hilda Solis, and SEIU 2015 President Laphonza Butler. (Photo: Monica Almeida, The Newspaper Guild)

On Saturday, January 14, 2017, nearly 1,000 community and labor leaders and elected officials gathered for the annual Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Breakfast hosted by the Los Angeles County Federation of Labor.

Held at the Westin Bonaventure downtown, the event kicked off with an address by newly elected United States Senator Kamala Harris. Sen. Harris has not only been a champion for California’s working families, but she has been a leader in reducing recidivism and providing tools to re-enter back into civilian life.

Attendees also heard from one of the greatest civil rights leaders of our time. Known as “America’s Nelson Mandela,” Bryan Stevenson has dedicated his career to helping the poor, the incarcerated, and the condemned. Stevenson is a widely acclaimed public interest lawyer, who has successfully argued several cases in the United States Supreme Court and recently won an historic ruling that mandatory life-without-parole sentences for all children 17 or younger are unconstitutional.

This year’s theme was “Freed to Succeed” to honor the 20 graduates of the L.A. Fed’s Los Angeles Reentry Workforce Collaborative, a joint undertaking between four core partners: the LA Fed, the Los Angeles/Orange Counties Building and Construction Trades Council, and the Los Angeles Trade–Technical College, and the Anti-Recidivism Coalition.

AFM Local 47 represented at the 2017 MLK Breakfast From left: member Ron Jones, Trustee Bonnie Janofsky, Organizer Jefferson Kemper, member Clifford Tasner, California State Senator Pro Tem Kevin de León, President John Acosta, and Secretary/Treasurer Gary Lasley (Photo: Monica Almeida, The Newspaper Guild)

Later that day, the LA Fed sponsored and took part in the annual Kingdom Day Parade. The basic freedoms we enjoy today are because of Dr. King’s tireless efforts in organizing communities of all backgrounds, races, and religions.

Photos: Michael Moriatis, ICG: International Cinematographers Guild (IATSE Local 600)