Today, we reflect on the impact of one of the country’s most prolific change-makers and mentors in modern history— Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
Dr. King built a legacy that not only invoked action during the fight for civil rights, but continues to inspire change, nearly 55 years after his death.
A Call to Serve
Dr. King’s legacy has endured and remains tangible today because of his empowered call to create change through service. King’s approach was influenced by many teachers and mentors including Benjamin Mays, president of Morehouse College in Atlanta as well as Howard Thurman, one of the principal architects of the modern, nonviolent civil rights movement. Thurman is credited with teaching King about Gandhi’s lessons which King put into practice as he championed change and marched toward his dream where “love and trust triumphed over fear and hatred.”
Time and again, Dr. King asked, “What are you doing for others?” and reminded the world that “he who is greatest among you shall be your servant. That’s the new definition of greatness.” More so, Dr. King acknowledged that everyone could contribute to change, because anyone can serve. Dr. King often spoke of serving “The Beloved Community” as the goal toward a more just America and a just world. Whether it be in the form of a march on Washington, or volunteering at the local food bank, the collective effort to do what is right and good keeps us moving forward.
Through service and mentorship, Hancock Whitney associates answer Dr. King's call year round and share their time and talents to build stronger communities.
At Hancock Whitney, we understand that change and progress occurs when we focus on the tiny corners of the world we call home, when we extend a helping hand to a neighbor, when we ensure all people have access to achieve their financial dreams and when we build stronger communities through dialogue and mutual responsibility.
We know that the work is never done, and on this national day of service, honoring Dr. King, we reaffirm our commitment to service and pledge to build on the impact we made in 2022 like:
- Working with community partners to build safe places for children to play and learn about financial education, because kids are the catalyst for strong communities.
- Awarding grant funds to nonprofits who work tirelessly to expand access to homeownership across race, gender, and ethnicity, because homes are the cornerstone of our communities
- Supporting entrepreneurs and their dreams through no-cost training programs because communities thrive when small businesses thrive.
- Helping reduce the barriers to home buying and wealth building through education and innovative products and services.
Commitment to the Dream
Dr. King’s dream was to embrace and build a truly “united” nation, where we care for our fellow neighbors, we bring together individuals of all walks of life to face our communities’ most pressing issues, and we serve with a gracious heart.
Beyond service to uplift communities, mentorship is a way of giving back to the world in perpetuity and also a way to honor Dr. King’s legacy of creating the beloved community of tomorrow. King is proof that mentors help shape the accomplishments of their protégés and sometimes protégés change the world. Because of Mays and Thurman, millions across the nation reflect on how they can continue King’s legacy through service.
As we look to the year ahead, and seek to create “The Beloved Community” right here, right now, we call on our associates, our partners and our communities to answer Dr. King’s challenge to serve and mentor to help shape the lives of others because “The time is always right to do what is right.”