The Town of Paradise Valley will observe and celebrate Martin Luther King Day on Jan. 20, at the Town Hall with a ceremony starting at 11 a.m. and luncheon immediately following.
During the ceremony, Kim Covington, senior director of community initiatives at the Arizona Community Foundation will be awarded the Paradise Valley MLK 2020 Diversity Award for dedicating her life to bringing multiple voices and perspectives to solve community problems and take full advantage of emerging opportunities.
Kim Covington works to amplify ACF’s presence in diverse communities across the state by creating innovative and community collaborations with existing and new partners. She leads Philanthropy for All which is ACF’s ongoing cultural initiatives and giving circles that engages diverse individuals in addressing relevant community needs.
From leading the Philanthropy for All Initiative, or convening the community to have conversations about social justice issues in the Courage to Listen, Learn and Act, Covington and ACF believe there is power in partnerships, shared passion and pooled resources.
Covington says, “I am proud to address critical social justice issues in our state. The Courage to Listen, Learn and Act series at ACF is a platform to engage our community in discussions and action around social justice issues. This series brings together key stakeholders to address important topics including mass incarceration and affordable housing. These ongoing conversations increase knowledge, leverage resources, and maximize connections to influence change within the community.”
Covington retired from TV news after 30 years in the industry. Along with her time at KPNX 12 News as a news anchor and school solutions reporter, her career spans from Springfield, Missouri and Grand Rapids, Michigan to her hometown St. Louis, Missouri.
She is the recipient of several awards including four Emmy Awards for excellence in reporting, several Associated Press awards. It was recently announced that she will be the recipient of the 2020 Town of Paradise Valley Martin Luther King Diversity Award.
She is the recipient of the 2019 Valle del Sol Mom of the Year Award, 2017 In-Business Women of Achievement Award, the Black Educators Ragsdale Beacon of Hope Award, Judge Jean Williams Service Award, African American Leadership Institute Gene Blue Public Service Award and the Arizona School Public Relations Association Award of Excellence to name a few.
She currently serves on the City of Phoenix Fast Track Initiatives Ad Hoc Committee to end HIV by 2030, Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office African American Advisory Council, is a member of Phoenix Rotary 100, Advisory Member of Support My Club, a charter member of the National Coalition of 100 Black Women, Inc. Phoenix Metropolitan Chapter, and has been a member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority for over 30 years.
During her spare time, she enjoys hosting, voice-over work and other performing arts at her business, The Covington Companies. The wife and mother of two is a graduate of University of Missouri - Columbia Journalism School.
“Throughout my career in television news, and now in philanthropy, I have always been passionate about sharing history, information, and illuminating the truth so that we can all work together to provide solutions that help make our communities better for all,” Covington adds.
During the ceremony, another address will be delivered by Ms. Susan Weidner, a representative from the Baha’i Community. The Baha’i Faith, the world’s newest independent global belief system, teaches the oneness of God, the unity of humanity, and the essential harmony of religion. Baha’is believe in peace, justice, love, altruism and unity. The Baha’i teachings promote the agreement of science and religion, the equality of the sexes and the elimination of all forms of prejudice.
As part of the Federal National Day Service on MLK Day, a food drive is also being organized. Canned or boxed food can be dropped off at the Paradise Valley Town Hall during normal business days and evenings during public meeting days. There is also a drop off box available 24 hours a day in the Police Department lobby.
Donations will be delivered to the Paradise Valley community food bank on 32nd St, North of Shea Blvd, the day after MLK Day.
Editor’s Note: Dr. Kana Chinasamy is member of the Bahá’i faith.