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For Immediate Release
Tuesday, Jan. 15, 2013

Prominent guests to make Keeper of the Dream a memorable event

     Rochester, Mich. – Promising to honor the legacy of the late civil rights leader, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., the 21st annual Keeper of the Dream Scholarship Awards Celebration at Oakland University is shaping up to be as historic as it is inspirational.

Daymond John
     The Monday, Jan. 21, event will welcome not only famed entrepreneur, fashion mogul and marketing expert Daymond John as keynote speaker, but will also feature a special visit and remarks from Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder.

     "The Keeper of the Dream Scholarship Awards celebration is in many ways an event designed to promote social justice, and we're happy to have two very special guests who will certainly have valuable insights to share about making the most of Dr. King's Dream," said Omar Brown-El, director of OU's Center for Multicultural Initiatives and organizer of the Keeper of the Dream celebration.

     "When you pair this with our focus on the accomplishments of the three remarkable students we'll be honoring this year, I think attendees will see a very powerful demonstration of how all of us can realize the kind of equality that Dr. King so passionately advocated."

     Daymond John is the creator of the worldwide FUBU fashion brand, owner of the Shark Branding consulting corporation, and star of the WABC's reality television business show "The Shark Tank."

     Through his successes, he has established himself as a worldwide expert in business, branding and marketing. The extraordinary reach of his company and branding has earned him the nickname, "godfather of urban fashion."

     Prior to being elected governor in 2010, Gov. Snyder helped grow what was at the time the fledgling Gateway computer company into a Fortune 500 firm with more than 10,000 employees. He subsequently became a successful venture capitalist and creator of HealthMedia, Inc.

Gov. Rick Snyder
     "I am grateful to have the opportunity take part in in this celebration of Dr. King's vision of advancing equality, social justice and opportunity for all," said Gov. Snyder. "I'm sure the three students selected for this esteemed award will use their passion and leadership abilities to continue this mission for their generation."

     Honorees at the Keeper of the Dream Scholarship Awards celebration are selected based on their efforts to exemplify Dr. King's vision and, specifically, to promote interracial acceptance and understanding.

     Each student will receive a scholarship of up to $5,000 in recognition of their strong citizenship, scholarship and leadership in breaking down cultural stereotypes. More than 50 students from a wide variety of academic majors have been awarded scholarships since the inception of the Keeper of the Dream celebration.

     Past keynote speakers include esteemed public figures such as rapper and activist Common, actor Lou Gossett Jr., journalist and editor Susan L. Taylor, and civil rights leader Coretta Scott King.

     This year's celebration is set for 11:30 a.m. on Jan. 21 in the Oakland Center Banquet Rooms on the campus of Oakland University. For interactive and printable maps, visit To learn more about the event, call the Center for Multicultural Initiatives at (248) 370-4404 or visit the Keeper of the Dream website at