Be inspired by astronauts, moving performances and the actions of this year’s winners at the annual MLK Diversity Awards taking place at 8 a.m. on Friday, Jan.14.

Hear uplifting spoken word from Qosmic Qadence and ask questions of Dr. Sian Proctor, the first Black woman to ever pilot a spacecraft. Mayor Corey Woods will speak about Tempe’s progress toward greater diversity, equity and inclusion. Human Relations Commission 2021 Chair Kate Vawter will emcee the event.

The MLK Diversity Awards honor people who demonstrate a commitment to diversity and inclusion and who exemplify the spirit of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. This year’s program honors people and organizations, including students, who work to make Dr. King’s dream a reality. Individual adult honorees are: Lizbett Benge; Alison Porter; and Jordan Wright. Individual youth honorees include: Lillian Flottmann; Denzel Higiro; and Malaya McCorvey-Weil. In recognition of education, community and business these organizations, respectively, will be recognized: Tempe History Museum (Brenda Abney and Gary Looney); AGC Collector’s Club of Arizona; and Printing Specialists.

Residents are invited to interact with the virtual program live at and offer up questions, congratulatory messages and comments about the program. Dr. Proctor will take questions from the community about her experiences in space. Those interested may also watch live at, on Cox cable channel 11 and on Century Link 8012.

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