Watertown will celebrate its thirteenth Unity Breakfast on Monday, January 21, 2013. The event brings together hundreds of people, representing Watertown’s diverse population, to remember Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., the man who devoted his life to ending prejudice and racism in our country. The Unity Breakfast has become a Watertown tradition. This year’s speaker is the seasoned civic, community and nonprofit leader Robert Lewis, Jr., currently Vice President for Program at the Boston Foundation. The breakfast will also include two local musical groups, essays by middle and high school students on the meaning of the day, and the annual Unity Award, presented to an individual who has demonstrated outstanding community service.
Robert Lewis, Jr. has served as Vice President for Program at the Boston Foundation since the fall of 2007. He directs the distribution of some $16 million in discretionary grants to nonprofit organizations and programs that serve the people of Greater Boston. As Vice President of Program, Mr. Lewis oversaw a new grant making framework, called “Thriving People/Vibrant Places,” which seeks to have a profound impact on important areas of community life. They include dramatic improvements in education and health attainment, safe and vibrant neighborhoods, robust arts and cultural opportunities, and a regional economy that enables all to thrive. Mr. Lewis is the chief architect of StreetSafe Boston, a Boston Foundation initiative with the mission of dramatically reducing gun violence in the city; and CHAMPS Boston, which promotes youth development through sports by training coaches, providing donated sports equipment and uniforms, refurbishing fields and investing in youth sports programs throughout the city. Prior to his work with the Boston Foundation, Mr. Lewis served in Boston Mayor Thomas M. Menino’s administration as Executive Director of the Boston Centers for Youth and Families, as Senior Vice President of City Year’s national operations, and as Executive Director of City Year Boston.
Music this year will once again be provided by two choruses: The Greater Boston Intergenerational Chorus and Chosen Voices of Harmony. The Greater Boston Intergenerational Chorus, under the direction of Joanne Hammil, is a diverse and lively group of performers of all ages who sing an eclectic mix of music. Chosen Voices of Harmony, under the direction of Sylvester Hill, sing and share together the love of Southern Gospel music.
The Unity Breakfast, sponsored by the World in Watertown in collaboration with Survival Education Fund, Inc. and Watertown Citizens for Peace, Justice and the Environment, will be held on Monday, January 21, 2013 at 9:00 a.m. at the Hellenic Cultural Center, 25 Bigelow Avenue, Watertown. Child care will be provided for pre-schoolers. The Hellenic Cultural Center is handicap accessible. Tickets are $10 (children 12 and under free). For reservations call 617-924-6143 or e-mail email@example.com by January 14. Tickets will also be available at the door.