Mayor Strickland, Dr. Dexter Gordon speak at Bates’ Martin Luther King Jr. celebration

Thursday, January 9

TACOMA, Wash. - Bates Technical College will celebrate the life and legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. at the annual celebration on Friday, Jan. 17, 11:30 a.m.-1 p.m. at the college's Downtown Campus Auditorium, 1101 S. Yakima Avenue in Tacoma.

The community is invited to reflect on Dr. King's memorable march and historic "I Have a Dream" speech with the city's Mayor Marilyn Strickland, Dr. Dexter Gordon, and local musical guest, Jerusalem's Gate.  

Mayor Strickland will provide opening remarks, and Gordon, a distinguished educator at the University of Puget Sound, will serve as keynote speaker. Gordon is a professor of communication and African American studies, and is the director of the university's African American Studies Program. Speeches will focus on the theme of Civil Rights: What Now?, which will encourage attendees to reflect on the future of civil rights in America and beyond.  

Community members are also invited to participate in the annual March for MLK on Monday, Jan. 20. The marchers will meet at 8 a.m. for refreshments at the college's Downtown Campus cafeteria on 11th Street and Yakima Avenue, and will begin to march to the city's Martin Luther King Jr. Birthday Celebration, held at the Greater Tacoma Convention and Trade Center at 9 a.m. A shuttle will be available to return marchers to the Downtown Campus following the city's celebration, which begins at 11 a.m. and ends at 1 p.m.  

For more information about the celebration and the march, please contact the college's Diversity Center at 253.680.7113, or visit  

About Bates Technical College

Founded in 1940, Bates Technical College offers certificate and degree opportunities in 53 career education programs, and serves approximately 3,000 career training students and 10,000 more community members annually in extended learning, distance learning, high school, and other programs. For more information, go to, or call 253.680.7000.  

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