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MSNBC National Correspondent Joy-Ann Reid Serves as Nashville MLK Day Convocation Keynote Speaker

Friday, January 10, 2020 | 09:02am

NASHVILLE, Tenn. – The Interdenominational Ministers Fellowship (IMF) is honored once again to celebrate the life and legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. on Monday, January 20, 2020 during its 31st annual Youth Rally, March and Convocation. This year’s featured keynote is the award-winning, MSNBC political analyst, Joy-Ann Reid of the weekly broadcast “A.M. Joy.” The theme is: ‘We Are The Ones We Have Been Waiting For.’

Each year, thousands join in a week of activities prior to the national observance of MLK Day, in order to honor the life and legacy of Dr. King. Events culminate with the annual Youth Rally and March – starting at the historic Jefferson Street Missionary Baptist Church – leading participants to the convocation, which will be held at Tennessee State University’s Gentry Center.

“We are always excited to bring people together from across the country to honor and commemorate the life and mission of Dr. King,” said Joy Styles, Chair of the 2020 MLK Day celebration and Nashville Metro Councilwoman – District 32. “The work is not over, and we can only achieve the dream if we all work together. Part of that work is sharing the history of Nashville’s pivotal role in the Civil Rights movement, in many ways. As one of the oldest MLK Day celebrations and the host of the longest running commemorative march in the nation, our events are not only a wonderful tribute to Dr. King’s time in Music City, but also a call to action to continue working towards an equitable future.”

Activities include:

January 15, 2020 – MLK Labor Breakfast – a partnership between IMF the Central Labor Council of Nashville and Middle TN, the TN AFL-CIO, as well as the TN Human Rights Commission. This event will be held at Cabana Restaurant (1910 Belcourt Ave) and will feature Gloria Sweet-Love, NAACP Tennessee State Conference President as keynote.

January 16, 2020 – Women of Faith – a social justice panel moderated by Harriet Wallace of FOX17 News. Panelists include Rev. Dr. Teresa Smallwood, Associate Director at Vanderbilt Divinity School; Rev. Lisa Hammonds, Pastor at St. John AME Church of Nashville; Aisha Lbhalla, Chair of the Muslim Women’s Council School; Rabbi Shana Goldstein Mackler, Rabbi at the temple Ohabai Sholom of Nashville; and Sarah Wilke, Executive Director of the Scarritt Bennett Center. It will be held in the Harambe Room of the Scarritt Bennett Center.

January 18, 2020 – Youth Symposium – a variety of Teach In workshops including Show Up & Show Out: Your Vote Matters, Organizing Your Activism, Funding Your Movement, Know Your Rights?, and Doing it for the Culture: The Importance of Art in Activism. Presenters include AJ Starling of the Davidson County Election Commission, Rasheedat Fetuga of Gideon’s Army, Lauren Fitzgerald of the Metro Arts Commission, Sheila Calloway – a juvenile court judge, and DJ Eno and his team. This event will take place at the Avon Williams TSU campus.

January 19, 2020 – Worship Night – with keynote speaker Dr. J. Lawrence Turner of Mississippi Boulevard Christian Church. The senior pastor will be joined by the Mississippi Blvd. Mass Choir. This event will be held at Fifteenth Avenue Baptist Church (1203 9th Ave N).

January 20, 2020 – National MLK Day ObservanceYouth Rally & March – 8:30a.m. at Jefferson Street MBCConvocation – 11:00a.m. at Tennessee State University’s Gentry Center.

Participants in the day’s activities include state and local officials – including Governor Bill Lee, Mayor John Cooper, Senator Jim Cooper, Metro Council Members, Dr. Adrienne Battle, area university and college presidents, along with many other local leaders.“The IMF is more than thrilled to have Joy-Ann Reid this year and we are looking forward to her perspective on the legacy that Dr. King left for us to continue,” said Rev. James C. Turner, II president of IMF. “As a leader in the journalism field, it is ideal to hear from her perspective when freedom of speech has been tested among her profession. This national holiday is a ‘day on,’ not a ‘day off’ to serve, celebrate and commemorate the important work of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., and Ms. Reid will bring a powerful view of today’s view of the work done and that which has yet to be accomplished.”

To learn about IMF’s list of activities, visit

About Interdenominational Ministers Fellowship: For over 35 years, IMF has served with a purpose and mission to provide an interdenominational bridge to create a unified, cooperative, leadership collaboration amongst faiths in Nashville. This premise has created the opportunity to promote and develop social progress and change through fellowship and leadership. For more information, visit

About Joy-Ann Reid, MSNBC Correspondent, Political Author & Former Host of "The Reid Report" Joy-Ann Reid is a political analyst at MSNBC and host of “AM Joy,” which airs Saturdays and Sundays from 10 A.M. ET to noon ET. She is the author of three books: Fracture: Barack Obama, the Clintons and the Racial Divide, We Are the Change We Seek: The Speeches of Barack Obama, which she co-edited with Washington Post columnist E.J. Dionne, and her latest book: The Man Who Sold America: Trump and the Unraveling of the American Story -- published this summer, which spent four weeks on the New York Times best-sellers list. Reid also hosts a podcast: Reid This-Reid That with veteran journalist Jacque Reid. She has worked in local and national TV news, talk radio and as a press secretary during two presidential campaigns, including for Barack Obama's campaign in Florida in 2008. Her columns have appeared in The New York Times, The Guardian, The Miami Herald, New York Magazine and The Daily Beast. Reid graduated from Harvard University with a concentration in film in 1991. She and her husband Jason own a documentary film production company. They reside in New York and have three children.