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Melvin "Mel" King is a Boston legend. Mel has lived history and he has made history in our City | Mayor's Office - Dec. 14, 2016 |

A lifelong resident of the South End, he's been an activist and an organizer, a teacher and a mentor for eight decades. He served in the State Legislature in the 1970s, and his ground breaking run for mayor in 1983 is etched in our City's memory. His leadership made possible everything from the Tent City housing development to the South End Technology Center, where he remains a leader in expanding access to high-tech skills.

Mel King has had a big impact on me. At my inauguration in January of 2014, I invited Mel to lead a group of Boston school students singing "We are in Harmony," a song that Mel wrote inspired by President Obama's election. Across four generations, they sang "all children are our children, no matter their birth / this is the time we work for all their worth." It was a moment I will never forget and a value I carry with me in my work as mayor.

I was thrilled when our Imagine Boston 2030 team chose Mel's book, Chain of Change: Struggles for Black Community Development, for our Imagine Boston reading list. Chain of Change is Mel's first-hand account of black Boston's journey of self-advocacy in the 20th century. It's a history of the Civil Rights struggle; an activist's memoir of the rocky path toward change; a social theory worthy of academic study; and a textbook on community organizing. It's a remarkable book that reflects the talent and vision of its remarkable author.

'Sapere aude'
by Oui (Oui) on Sat Apr 15th, 2023 at 10:48:26 AM EST

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