2004 MLK Leadership Award Recipients
LaRuth McAfee 'G
Salvatore Molica '75
J. Phillip Thompson
Ms. McAfee's dedication and commitment as a Chemical Engineering
graduate student and leader, who has worked tirelessly to create
a greater spirit of collaboration and inclusion in our community.
Graduate Student Volunteer Day, an idea first introduced byMs. McAfee
to the GSC when sh served as its Orientation Chair, has been part
of four orientation programs. It is already regarded as part of
her legacy. As a result of it, the MIT Public Service Center was
recently awarded further funding for increased graduate student
involvement. In addition to overseeing programs and initiatives,
she has provided very able leadership as Co-Chair of the Black Graduate
Students Association and Treasurer of the GSC. Realizing the importance
of supporting inner city youngsters, she has spent Saturday mornings
tutoring local students in mathematics and science. The MLK Committee
believes that her generosity and concern for others embody Dr. King's
In her letter of nomination, Ms Maryanne Kirkbride, Clinical
Director for Campus Life, cited his many years of service as a gifted
clinician at Dorchester's Codman Square Health Center, which, during
your tenure, has distinguished itself as a facility for providing
care to disadvantaged and low-income patients. As one of the first
family physicians in this area, he has demonstrated a sustained
interest in making his practice and the center increasingly more
responsive to the needs of your patients and their community. Dr.
Molica's work as a medical director has remained focused on expanding
services for those who might not otherwise enjoy access to them.
The MLK Committee believes that these efforts as a physician, administrator,
teacher, and role model exemplify the values of Dr. King. Your work
is an enduring monument to him and his legacy.
Ms. Staton has been cited for her tireless commitment to assisting
graduate and undergraduate students while they meet the challenges
of life at MIT. As an Associate Dean of the Graduate School, she
has inspired and sustained many promising young scholars by being
a compassionate and innovative administrator. Her encouragement
of women students has led to the formation of the Graduate Women's
Group and the Women's Book Club. Because of her role as a liaison
for MentorNet, a network for women in engineering and science, she
has expanded opportunities for future professionals in a range of
disciplines. Realizing the need to reach out beyond the academic
community, Ms. Staton serves as president of the Board of Directors
of the Cambridge Community Center. The MLK Committee salutes Ms.
Staton for responding to Dr. King's still resonating question: "What
are you doing for others?"
J. Phillip Thompson
Thompson has been cited for his long-standing commitment, as a scholar
and activist, to addressing the issues of race, class, and power
in inner cities and the global realm of migration and human rights.
While serving as director of the Mayor's Office of Housing Coordination
in New York City and subsequently, its Deputy General Manager, he
developed significant critical views of the sometimes flawed policies
concerned with homelessness and public housing. At Columbia University
and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, he had distinguished
himself as a dynamic thinker and teacher, exploring topics that
range from community economic development to the existing tensions
between African American establishment politicians and neighborhood
leaders. The MLK Committee believes that this dedication to seeking
social justice through innovative thought and socially responsible
action embodies Dr. King's ideals. Dr. Thompson's work is a fitting
tribute to his legacy and the continuation of his Dream.