AT&T

AT&T's David Huntley on Living the Legacy of Martin Luther King, Jr.

AT&T is No. 3 on the DiversityInc Top 50 Companies list


(Originally published on ATT.com)

I was asked to share my thoughts on the 50th anniversary of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s death as part of AT&T 28 Days History By Us campaign. Here they are.

This year marks the 50th anniversary of the murder of civil rights icon Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. We’ve all heard the tragedy of Dr. King’s murder from an assassin’s bullet at a Tennessee hotel in 1968. But to fully appreciate its impact, you must understand the time.

David Huntley, Senior Executive Vice President, Chief Compliance Officer at AT&T

While the fight for full social, economic and legal equality continues to this day, the environment in Dr. King’s day was far different. The struggle and threat more immediate. Despite this, Dr. King and others chose to carry the mantle of freedom during the Civil Rights movement of the 1950s and 60s. As one of the movement’s chief architects, Dr. King inspired us ALL to believe in a better future for ALL. By 1968, African Americans had gained substantial legal achievements, including the Civil Rights Acts of 1964 and 1968.

Imagine the hope as folks from all backgrounds banded together to achieve and celebrate these and other milestones.

Now imagine the overwhelming sense of intense pain when news broke that a gunman had murdered Dr. King.

I was 9-years-old the day Dr. King was assassinated. Like all children that age, I wasn’t yet fully aware of the environment in which I lived. All I knew was that when my brother was my age, he couldn’t visit Playland Park, an amusement park in our native San Antonio.

But on that day, my innocence was lost. I witnessed the people closest to me react in a way completely foreign to me.

Upon hearing the news of Dr. King’s murder, my mother dropped to her knees in the kitchen, her fervent prayers struggling to break free of her aching sobs. My father, a man known for his peaceful sensibilities, sat in a silent rage. The air around him burning. On that fateful day in 1968, we didn’t just lose an icon. We, along with the world, lost a family member.

Dr. King’s assassination left us all to ponder some very difficult questions. What now What did this mean for our future Was all hope lost Did the dream die along with him

The answer was a simple, but emphatic, “No.”

[aeit_emebed_article url=http://www.diversityinc.com/career-advice/atts-david-huntley-understand-growth-opportunities/]

For my family and so many others, that hopelessness was replaced with a purposeful resolve. Dr. King’s death would not be – and never would be – in vain. We accepted that it was on each of us to use, defend and develop the rights Dr. King had died fighting for. It’s a gift and responsibility we must value and apply every single day.

We’ve spent 50 years trying to make sense of Dr. King’s murder. Over that time, America has made incredible progress in the fight for equal rights. But there is still much more to be done.

To understand where we’re going, we must understand where we’ve been. So, as we celebrate Black History Month, I ask that we remember not only Dr. King’s death, but his work, legacy and the values he and others stood for.

Remember the Montgomery Bus Boycott. Remember the March on Washington. Remember Selma. Remember all the struggles that banded us together to overcome what seemed to be insurmountable.

Let’s never forget. Let’s continue to move forward. Let’s keep working together. Let’s not go back to that time!

Learn about career opportunities at AT&T

Latest News

President Joe Biden signs his first executive orders in the Oval Office

Biden Administration Already Hard at Work Enacting Numerous Beneficial Policies; Amanda Gorman is America’s New Superstar Poet; and More

President Joe Biden sworn in and new administration already hard at work. Just hours after his emotional, star-studded and highly protected inauguration took place on Jan. 20, President Joe Biden is already working on fulfilling campaign promises and undoing some of the most egregious acts carried out by his predecessor….

Trump commission attempts racist whitewashing of history

Trump Commission Attempts Racist Whitewashing of History; Colorado Rep. Lauren Boebert Probed for Potential Role in Capitol Insurrection; and More

Trump commission’s “1776 Report” attempts racist whitewashing of history In the highly controversial “1776 Report” released by the Trump administration yesterday, the outgoing GOP party doesn’t just try to present a nonpartisan, “patriotic” look at the nation’s history (as the President had promised the report would do) it fully rewrites…

Boeing Elects Lynne Doughtie to Board of Directors, Following Resignation of Director Caroline Kennedy

Originally published on boeing.mediaroom.com. The Boeing Company (No. 27 on The 2020 DiversityInc Top 50 Companies for Diversity list) board of directors today announced that Lynne Doughtie has been elected to the board, replacing Caroline Kennedy who has resigned following three years of dedicated service. Doughtie, 58, retired from KPMG in 2020, after serving as U.S. Chairman and…

Flint, Michigan water plant

Ex-Michigan Governor Charged for Racist Lead Poisoning of Flint Water Supply; COVID-19 Vaccines Not Increasing in Availability; Democrats Plan to Repeal Trump Rules; and More

Former Michigan Governor formally charged for poisoning thousands of predominantly Black Flint citizens with water containing lead. In 2014, when the city of Flint was forced by the state to begin taking its water supply from the Flint river rather than using water from nearby Detroit as it had for…