What I Owe Dr. Martin Luther King

Video: The Transformational Leadership Legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

Dr. King was a transformational leader whose hope of a better America changed America for the better. Share on X

Whatever success we have in life, we do not achieve it solely through our own efforts.

We of course have to work hard, prepare ourselves, and persevere until we reach our goals.

But, somewhere along the way we need the help of others who are genuinely interested in our well being if we are to succeed!

Success is built on our own efforts and the support of others who care about us.

Some of those people on whom our success is built we know personally (like my wife who has been there for me through every challenge life has brought us and my late grandmother who always made me feel that I mattered to her. )

Other people on whom our success is built, we will never know personally–like Dr. Martin Luther King.

We only know them from a distance as we watch their lives unfold in society.

Dr. King gave me hope as a child that my future could be bright.

As his birthday is celebrated, I want to thank Dr. King for all that I owe him.

Dr. King was without a doubt an inspirational leader who embodies the leadership principles that I discuss on this blog.

Unlike many today, I did not read the history of Dr. King to learn about him. Instead, I lived the history as a child watching and growing up in another part of the country.

I did not fully understand the pictures on the news or the violence directed at those who marched for the right to vote or eat freely at a restaurant. From the eyes of a young child untouched by the thinking of adults, the whole concept that skin color was the reason for these images seemed “stupid” to me. I remember thinking the following:  At school, all of us kids play together. Why couldn’t adults get along?

As I grew older, however, I would learn that race was an issue where I lived as well.

During this time, Dr. King’s great speech, I Have A Dream, gave me hope.  I remember memorizing it.

His words and life inspired me to learn and chart my own future. He motivated me to strive to be excellent. He taught me that I did not have to be limited by other people’s issues. Their issues are their own and they do not define who I am.

Dr. King gave me hope that the country would be different when I grew up and that I could be judged by the content of my character, not the color of my skin. His words and life were not in vain. Although much remains to be done to fulfill his dream, we are definitely farther along than we were back then.

Looking back, Dr. King cared about me though he never met me.

Success comes with the help of someone. I am genuinely thankful for God, my wife, my grandmother, and Dr. King.

“No man is an island entire of itself; every man is a piece of the continent, a part of the main; . . .  any man’s death diminishes me, because I am involved in mankind.  And therefore never send to know for whom the bell tolls; it tolls for thee.”   Poet John Donne

Dr. King inspired many people to accept his vision that America could be different and better than it had been in the past. He was a prime example of how leaders motivate and inspire others to make change. Share on X
Written by Robert Tanner | Copyrighted Material | All Rights Reserved Worldwide

This article is accurate to the best of the author’s knowledge.
Content is for informational or educational purposes only and does not substitute for professional advice in business, management, legal, or human resource matters.

Robert Tanner, MBA

Welcome to my leadership blog. I'm the Founder & Principal Consultant of Business Consulting Solutions LLC, a certified practitioner of psychometric assessments, and a former Adjunct Professor of Management. As a leadership professional, I bring 20+ years of real world experience at all levels of management.

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