DeKalb to Honor Youth during Annual MLK Celebration

Dekalb County

DeKalb will honor a Rhodes scholar, two youth organizations engaged in human rights advocacy and a 14-year-old entrepreneur during the county’s 37th annual Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. celebration.

The awards will be presented at 9:45 a.m. on Monday, Jan. 18, during a brief King Day celebration at James R. Hallford Stadium, 3789 Memorial College Ave., Clarkston, GA 30021.

At 10 a.m., immediately after the program, 3,500 DeKalb residents will receive one 20-pound box of fruit and vegetables and a 10-pound bag of chicken hindquarters. The COVID-19 Care Baskets will be distributed on a first-come, first-served basis, at four locations:

  • James R. Hallford Stadium, 3789 Memorial College Ave., Clarkston, GA 30021
  • Former K-Mart store parking lot at 5597 Buford Hwy NE, Doraville, GA 30340
  • Buck Godfrey Stadium, 2817 Clifton Springs Rd., Decatur, GA 30034
  • Big Miller Grove Missionary Baptist Church, 3800 Big Miller Grove Way, Stonecrest, GA 30038

The youth will receive the Nathaniel Mosby Humanitarian award, which celebrates the recipients’ commitment to tireless community service and outstanding dedication to being agents for positive change.

Those being recognized include:

  • Phaidra Buchanan

Phaidra Buchanan, a DeKalb County resident, is the University of Georgia’s first African-American student to win the prestigious Rhodes scholar. Only 25 students in UGA’s history have won this scholarship, which pays for two years or more of postgraduate study at England’s Oxford University.

  • Beacon Hill Black Alliance for Human Rights Youth/Student Committee and the Black Student Union of Decatur High School

The Beacon Hill Black Alliance for Human Rights’ Youth/Student Committee and the Black Student Union of Decatur High School began advocating in 2017 for the removal of the Lost Cause monument that was located in the Decatur Square. Their efforts were successful in June 2020 when the monument was removed.


  • Mason Wright, Mason’s Super Dogs, CEO and head chef

Fourteen-year-old entrepreneur Mason Wright, a Stonecrest resident, is the CEO and head chef of Mason’s Super Dogs. Mason is officially licensed to sell his Super Dogs on the campus of Morehouse College and in 2019 he won PETA’s No. 5 place for the Top 10 Vegan Hot Dogs of 2019.

The King Day theme for 2021 is “The Urgency of Creating the Beloved Community.”

The 2021 tribute marks the 53rd anniversary of King’s death and the 37th consecutive year DeKalb will host a King Day celebration, making it the longest running county-sponsored program in Georgia.

The live program will begin at 9:45 a.m. and will be streamed live via DCTV at  

Since May 2020, DeKalb County has provided fruit, vegetables, and protein to approximately 26,000 DeKalb County families.

The county is utilizing federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act funding to purchase the produce, ground beef and chicken.

For more information about the county’s response to COVID-19, visit