Service and opportunity. Two words I believe have come to define Huntsville. Two words that symbolize the life of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
In recent years, the MLK holiday has been appropriately repositioned as a “day on” instead of a “day off.” A day of giving and serving. Volunteering and empowering others. For it is service that is the underpinning of this community.
Whether it’s our military who serve with honor, ministers who serve congregations, teachers who serve our children, or public safety officers who risk their lives to serve and protect, a servant spirit surrounds us. It’s in the hundreds of non-profits that care for the less fortunate, support the arts, clean up our neighborhoods, and improve public health.
“I choose to give my life for those who have been left out of the sunlight of opportunity.”
King understood the power of service. He said “Everybody can be great…because anybody can serve. You don’t have to have a college degree to serve. You don’t have to make your subject and verb agree to serve. You only need a heart, full of grace. A soul generated by love.”
Service is also at the heart of servant leadership. The primary focus of our City is on the growth and well-being of people and our community. That means opportunity. Equal opportunity for all. Quality education for every student in every classroom. Good paying jobs and job training. Affordable housing and public spaces for the benefit of everyone.
Through the dedicated and collaborative work of this community, tens of thousands of new jobs are now coming to Huntsville. Innovative school programs offer students unprecedented opportunities for free or affordable college. There’s numerous resources for career-training, networking, and entrepreneurship.
Dr. King once said, “I choose to give my life for those who have been left out of the sunlight of opportunity.”
Huntsville is experiencing a moment in the sun. Let us continue to work together to ensure this light shines on all of citizens, expanding the promise of a better life by delivering opportunity.