WHAT: A luncheon featuring special guest the Honorable Constance Slaughter Harvey, and a Kennedy Center Honors-style awards ceremony to celebrate the legacy of Dr. Starks and our 2018 honorees.
WHEN: Luncheon and Awards Ceremony – March 28th, 2018 @ 12:00 PM
3600 Elvis Presley Blvd.
Memphis, TN 38116

CONTACT: Dr. Rosalyn Nichols

Your ticket purchase makes you a charter member of the Dr. Henry Logan Starks Institute for Faith, Race, and Social Justice.

Sponsor the Starks Celebration
We invite you to support the Starks Scholarship and Celebration by becoming an event sponsor. Sponsors receive extensive benefits including media/program coverage before and during events, prominent features in promotional materials, give-away tickets to the Starks Celebration, and access to VIP events like the President’s Reception! Click the links to learn more about becoming a sponsor or purchasing advertising space in our program.

Become a Sponsor!

Purchase a Program Ad!

Buy Tickets!

The 2018 key note speaker for the 31st Annual Henry Logan Starks Luncheon and Awards Ceremony

Constance Slaughter-Harvey, former Assistant Secretary of State and General Counsel, is founder and president of Legacy Education and Community Empowerment Foundation, Inc; first African American female to receive a law degree from the University of Mississippi (1970) and first female African American to serve as judge in Mississippi (1975).

The Henry Logan Starks Institute on Faith, Race, and Social Justice
Do > Seek > Walk

In the current national climate of racial tension and socioeconomic division, the Starks Institute will seek to make MTS the focal point at the much needed intersection of theological discourse, faith and its impact on race relations, poverty, and other relevant social issues.

The mission of the Starks Institute will be to equip leaders, engage institutions and empower people in living out what it means to do justice, seek mercy, and walk humbly with their God.

Henry Logan Starks Annual Event

Each February, Memphis Theological Seminary (MTS) hosts a community event to celebrate the life and witness of the late Dr. Henry Logan Starks, the first African-American professor at MTS. Known as the Henry Logan Starks Scholarship Dinner, the event pays homage to Dr. Starks’ legacy as a theologian, community leader and activist, and benefits the scholarship endowment in his name. Through the generous support of Dinner guests and benefactors, the Starks Endowment Fund generates scholarship dollars for African-American students who are following the path of Dr. Starks – attaining a theological education.

We are pleased to announce that the Henry Logan Starks Institute on Faith, Race, and Social Justice has elected its inaugural H.L. Fellow, Dr. Andre Johnson.

The Reverend Dr. Henry Logan Starks, The Gentle Giant

In 1964, Memphis Theological Seminary moved to Memphis from McKenzie, Tennessee at the height of the Civil Rights Movement. Henry Logan Starks was one of six African-American students to enroll in MTS after its move to Memphis. In welcoming the six students, MTS became one of the first predominantly white institutions in Memphis to admit African-Americans. This was the beginning of a diverse MTS community that continues to flourish and grow.

Dr. Starks was a community activist. He was a key leader of the 1968 Memphis Sanitation Workers’ Strike and a force behind the Black Monday school boycotts, which consolidated the support of Memphis students and teachers for sanitation workers. Though tenacious in his passion for the rights and welfare of all people, Starks was dubbed by the community as the “Gentle Giant” because of the quiet dignity and resolute leadership he maintained even under the most tumultuous circumstances.

After graduating from MTS, he became the first African-American member of the MTS faculty while continuing to serve as Pastor of St. James African Methodist Episcopal Church. He died on July 4, 1985. A well-respected leader and beloved pastor and faculty member, he left a lasting legacy in Memphis and for MTS. The local newspapers described Starks, who coined the phrase “You are somebody,” as “…in the elite class with Dr. [Martin Luther] King, A. Phillip Randolph and Medgar Evers.”