Dear colleagues,

On Monday, Jan. 16, we honor the life and legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr and commemorate his birthday. Dr. King’s contributions helped advance the ideal of a just society that embodies our shared humanity.

As members of an academic medical center with a commitment to care for our citizens, we are in a position to carry on Dr. King’s legacy as we aim to produce a culturally competent workforce that cares for a diverse patient population. As you take time to reflect and celebrate his life, we encourage you to participate in university-sponsored events during MLK Celebration Week.

The VCU Office of Institutional Equity, Effectiveness and Success will hold an event on Sunday, Jan. 15, 2 – 3 p.m. at the Institute for Contemporary Art (601 W. Broad St.) featuring Reggie Gordon, Richmond’s deputy chief administrative officer and former director of the Office of Community Wealth Building. Gordon will discuss the effects of poverty on communities.

Other events during MLK Celebration Week include:

MLK Day of Service
Monday, Jan. 16, 7:45 – 10:30 a.m.
West Grace North Residence Center, 830 W. Grace St.
The Office of Student Leadership and Student Engagement will host a volunteer opportunity to clean Saint James Street at the intersection of the railroad tracks, with transportation leaving from the West Grace North Residence Center. For more information, email Kaylynn Hill at

MLK Candlelight Vigil March
Monday, Jan. 16, 6 – 7:30 p.m.
VCUArts Depot, 814 W. Broad St.
VCU’s chapter of Alpha Phi Alpha will host a candlelight vigil march to honor the legacy of Martin Luther King, Jr through the streets on campus. For more information, email Ryan Griffin at or Carlton Goode at

Partnering for Health and Thriving Communities through Economic Vitality
Friday, Jan. 20, 6 – 8 p.m.
VCU Health Hub, 1330 N. 25th St., Suite A
Leaders from Richmond’s East End will discuss partnership, prosperity and economic justice for the area. For more information, email the Health Hub at

This month, let’s remember Dr. King’s words and continue to strive for our workplace and learning environment to reflect dignity, professionalism and mutual respect as we provide care for others.


David Chelmow, M.D.
Interim Dean, VCU School of Medicine
Interim Executive Vice President for Medical Affairs, VCU Health System

Kevin Harris, Ph.D., MSA
Senior Associate Dean for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion