SHERMAN, TEXAS — The eighth annual Grayson County Martin Luther King Jr. Day Community Celebration Breakfast will be held at 7:30 a.m. Monday, January 16, in Mabee Hall of the Robert J. and Mary Wright Campus Center at Austin College. Grayson County Rotary groups and Austin College co-sponsor the event. Members of the community may attend at a cost of $10 per person, payable at the door.
The keynote speaker for the event will be Chief Justice Wallace B. Jefferson of the Texas Supreme Court. Jefferson is the 26th chief justice in Texas, appointed in 2004 by Gov. Rick Perry. Last year he served as president of the Conference of Chief Justices, an association of chief justices from all 50 states and U.S. territories. He also chaired the National Center for State Courts board of directors, a policy and resource organization.
He joined the Court from private practice in San Antonio, after an appointment by Gov. Perry in 2001. As a partner in the appellate-specialty firm Crofts, Callaway & Jefferson, he successfully argued two cases before the United States Supreme Court. He is a graduate of the James Madison College at Michigan State University and the University of Texas School of Law.
Chief Justice Jefferson is a member of the American Law Institute and is certified in civil appellate law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization. He was San Antonio Bar Association president in 1998-99 and was the San Antonio Young Lawyers Association's Outstanding Young Lawyer in 1997.
He is the namesake for the Wallace B. Jefferson Middle School in San Antonio. He has served as a director of the San Antonio Public Library Foundation, of the Alamo Area Big Brothers/Big Sisters and on the education committee of the San Antonio Area Foundation.
Dr. Marjorie Hass, president of Austin College, will welcome guests. Sophomore Chastity Liner, of Katy, Texas, and president of Austin College club Black Expressions will provide a student address. The Sherman Federated Choirs, led by Priscilla Mask and Tonia Childs, will provide special music.
Austin College is a leading national independent liberal arts college located north of Dallas in Sherman, Texas. Founded in 1849, making it the oldest institution of higher education in Texas operating under original charter and name, the college is related by covenant to the Presbyterian Church (USA). Recognized nationally for academic excellence in the areas of international education, pre-professional training, and leadership studies, Austin College is one of 40 schools profiled in Loren Pope’s influential book Colleges that Change Lives.