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UK Prof. Gerald Smith to speak at Somerset MLK event

By Dave Cazalet, Jr., Somerset Community College Director of Public Relations

University of Kentucky History Professor Gerald L. Smith will be the guest speaker at the Annual Somerset Celebration of Martin Luther King, Jr. Day on Sunday, January 17, 2010, at 3pmET/2pmCT, in the W. B. Jones Auditorium at Somerset High School, 305 College ST, Somerset, KY. The event is free and open to the public. The event is being co-sponsored by Somerset Community College and Somerset High School.

The Somerset Unity Choir will also perform. Chase Moore, the Minister of Music at Ferguson Baptist Church, will direct the Unity Choir. Jan Smith will be the accompanist and assistant director.

Smith is a native of Lexington, Kentucky. He is an associate professor of African American history at the University of Kentucky. He also serves as the Pastor of the Farristown Baptist Church in Berea, Kentucky. Dr. Smith received his bachelor and masters degrees in American history from UK in 1981 and 1983, respectively. In 1988, he earned his Ph.D. in history from UK with a concentration in urban and African American history.

From 1988 until 1993 he was an assistant professor at the University of Memphis. He returned to UK to join the history faculty as a tenured professor in 1993. From 1997-2005 he was director of UK's African American Studies and Research Program.

Dr. Smith is the author, editor or co-editor of three books. He is a volume co-editor of The Papers of Martin Luther King, Jr. Vol. Six: Advocate of Social Gospel, March 1948- September 1963 which was published in 2007 by the University of California Press. He has authored or co-authored more than thirty book reviews, essays, articles, and book chapters for historical journals and reference books. He has presented and co-presented his research at national and regional historical conferences. At present, he is researching and writing a new general history of the African American experience in Kentucky. He is also a General Co-editor of the Kentucky African American Encyclopedia Project.

Dr. Smith has served on a number of different boards and committees. His awards include: selection as an Outstanding Young Man of America Award (1981); a National Faculty Scholar (1997); Who's Who Among African Americans (2000); induction into the Martin Luther King, Jr. Collegium of Scholars of Morehouse College in Atlanta, Georgia ( 2000); the Real Men, Real Fathers Award from Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity (2004); and the Evelyn Black Award, presented by the UK Black Student Union to Outstanding African American faculty or staff (2005). In May of 2006, he was inducted into the Henry Clay High School Hall of Fame in Lexington, Kentucky.

Gerald Smith is married to the former Teresa Turner and they are the parents of two daughters, Elizabeth, 19 and Sarah, 15.

This story was posted on 2010-01-11 07:29:04
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