Xernona Clayton to be Featured for King Celebration, Wednesday, February 4

For Immediate Release: 
Jan 14 2009

CONTACT: Nancy Ellison, Director of Multicultural Affairs
1-304-384-6086, nellison@concord.edu

Athens, W.Va. – The Office of Multicultural Affairs at Concord University is proud to announce that Xernona Clayton will be the speaker for the Martin Luther King Jr. Celebration to be held on Wednesday, February 4, 2008. The celebration will be help in the Main Theater of the Alexander Fine Arts Center and will begin at 1 p.m.

Ms. Clayton is founder, president and CEO of the Trumpet Awards Foundation, Inc. and creator and executive producer of the Foundation’s Trumpet Awards. The Trumpet Awards is a prestigious event highlighting African American accomplishments and contributions. Initiated in 1993 by Turner Broadcasting, the Trumpet Awards has been televised annually and distributed internationally to over 185 countries around the world.

Ms. Clayton began her television career in 1967 and became the South’s first black person to have her own television show. The Xernona Clayton Show was a regular feature on WAGA-TV, CBS affiliate in Atlanta.

Xernona Clayton was employed at Turner Broadcasting for nearly 30 years where she served as a corporate executive. In 1988, Xernona Clayton was appointed corporate vice president for urban affairs with Turner Broadcasting System, Inc. In this capacity, she directed internal and external projects for the Corporation and served as liaison between Turner Broadcasting (TBS SuperStation, CNN, Headline News, TNT, Atlanta Braves and Atlanta Hawks) and civic groups in Atlanta and across the country. As a corporate executive, Ms. Clayton was one of the highest-ranking female employees in Turner Broadcasting System.

Xernona moved to Atlanta in 1965 where she accepted a position with the Southern Christian Leadership Conference and worked closely with the late Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Ms. Clayton also traveled extensively with Mrs. Coretta Scott King on her nationwide concert tours.

Dedicated to promoting racial understanding, Xernona Clayton has been a leader in civic projects and civil rights activities for several years. In 1966, she coordinated the activities of Atlanta’s black doctors in a project called Doctors’ Committee for Implementation, which resulted in the desegregation of all hospital facilities in Atlanta. This project served as a model and a pilot for other states throughout the country and received national honor from the National Medical Association for its impact.

“The Peaceful Warrior” a biography of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. authored by her late husband Ed Clayton and co-authored by Xernona in the revised editions, has been published in several languages. Xernona Clayton’s autobiography, “I’ve Been Marching All the Time,” was published in 1991.

In private life, she is married to Judge Paul L. Brady. She is a member of Ebenezer Baptist Church, formerly co-pastored by Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and Dr. Martin Luther King Sr. and a member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority.

Along with other honors, she has received the first Coretta Scott King Award from the SCLC (Southern Christian Leadership Conference) the Madam C. J. Walker Award from EBONY’S Outstanding Women in Marketing and Communications, the Outstanding Corporate Professional Award from the Power Networking Family and, in 2006, an honorary doctorate of humane letters degree from Tennessee State University.

“We are so honored to host Xernona Clayton here at Concord, said Nancy Ellison, director of multicultural affairs. “We are looking forward to her visit and the inspiration her speech will bring to our students.”


PHOTO: Xernona Clayton
(High resolution version attached to the end of this page)

CONCORD UNIVERSITY NOTES: Persons with disabilities should contact Nancy Ellison, 1-304-384-6086 or 1-800-344-6679, extension 6086 if special assistance or help is required for access to an event scheduled by the University on campus.

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