MLK Humanitarian Award Winners Reflect Spirit of Dr. King

(LEBANON, Ill., January 23, 2015) — McKendree University honored the spirit and legacy of the Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King and gave its annual Humanitarian Awards to two students and a staff member on Jan. 22 in Bothwell Chapel. Honored were Ranodore Foggs, director of public safety; senior economics and finance major Taylor Cope, of Bloomington; and junior business and finance major Jeremiah Wilkins, of St. Louis. The annual awards are given to those who demonstrate increased understanding, tolerance, and humanitarian principles and ideals.

Foggs, a Fairview Heights resident, brings a wealth of professional experience and counsel to campus conversations about racial harmony. In addition to his full-time position at McKendree, he is pastor of the New Horizon Community Church in East St. Louis and serves as the violence prevention coordinator of the New Salem Baptist Association, Inc. He is a former Illinois State Police captain; former East St. Louis police chief; chairman of the financial oversight panel for school District 189; and a local NAACP board member.

Cope is a community service scholar and a campus leader involved in both the Lyn Huxford Center for Community Service and campus ministries. Her volunteer work with the Opal House and the East St. Louis Family Living Center, which provides transitional housing, has strengthened her resolve to make a difference in others’ lives. She has participated in numerous opportunities to work toward a more inclusive campus environment. 

Wilkins, a scholar-athlete, is president and a founding member of the new Phi Beta Sigma fraternity forming at McKendree. He helps young people with substance abuse issues, mediation, suicide prevention and making the transition from high school to college. He also serves as a student leader for Campus Activities Board’s “difficult discussions group,” promoting cohesiveness and collaboration among student organizations.

The MLK event’s keynote address, “Still…Keep Hope Alive” was given by Father Maurice Nutt, a native St. Louisan who directs the Institute for Black Catholic Studies at Xavier University of Louisiana in New Orleans. The Sister Thea Bowman Liturgical Dance Team also performed.


 Photo of MLK 2015 Awardees

McKendree University’s Humanitarian Awards were presented to Director of Public Safety

Ranodore Foggs, senior Taylor Cope, and junior Jeremiah Wilkins.