Black tie gala is part of Black History Month

Published 3:29 pm Thursday, February 15, 2018

Mercer native and award-winning educator will be speaker


News release

Email newsletter signup

HARRODSBURG — As part of the celebration of Black History Month in Harrodsburg, the West Lane Park Board is sponsoring its fourth annual black tie gala on Saturday. This event, which includes dinner, entertainment, and dancing, will be held at the Lion’s Park Community Center on East Factory Street, beginning at 6:30 p.m.

The theme for the evening is “Black History – The Strength in Our Past Gives Us Faith in Our Future.” The keynote speaker will be Dr. Lucian Yates, III, a Harrodsburg native now serving as Dean of Graduate Studies at Tennessee State University. Yates has served in a variety of education roles in Kentucky, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Texas and Tennessee.  

Yates has served as a teacher, assistant principal, principal, assistant superintendent and superintendent. He also has been an adjunct university professor at Shippensburg University in Pennsylvania and Brown University in Providence, Rhode Island.  

He was invited to the former Soviet Union to work with teachers and principals as they moved from communism to democracy.  

Yates has studied with Dr. Madeline Hunter, Drs. Kenneth and Rita Dunn, Dr. Bernice McCarthy, Dr. Ted Sizer and many more.

Yates was featured on a call-in talk show with Secretary of Labor, Robert Reich, Secretary of Education, Richard Reilly and President Bill Clinton to discuss school-to-work initiatives  Dr. Yates’ role as superintendent was featured in the December 2002 edition of U.S. News and World Report and the January New Yorker. Additionally, he was awarded the Ohio Social Studies Teacher of the Year and the Outstanding Young Professional award.

Following the keynote address by Yates, the evening will conclude with dancing, featuring DJ Frank “Frankie Boy” Burton of Springfield.

Proceeds from this event will be used for maintenance and renovations at the West Lane Park, which is designated as “A Community Park” in Mercer County. Event organizers emphasize that it takes an effort by all residents of Harrodsburg to help preserve this park. Acknowledging and celebrating Black History as part of the collective history of Mercer County is a part of the effort to bring and maintain unity within the community.

A limited number of tickets are still available for purchase at $30 per person or $18 per student, 18 and younger. 

For more information or to purchase tickets, contact Lolita Short at (859) 613-3342, Maureen Dunn at (859) 612-1697, or Kathryn VanDyke at (859) 420-0769.