Florida A&M University (FAMU) College of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences, Institute of Public Health (CoPPS, IPH) Director of Alumni Engagement, James L. Moran, Jr., will perform a rendition of “I Have a Dream” by Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. at the FAMU Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Convocation this Thursday, January 16, 2020.
This year marks the 23rd year that Dr. Moran has performed the speech for convocation. He fell upon the roll during a break backstage of a play at the FAMU Essential Theatre. During that break, Dr. Moran playfully impersonated Dr. King, and a crew member shouted, “You sound just like Dr. King! You should audition your rendition of the speech for the Marching 100 directors for convocation.” Dr. Moran followed through with that suggestion. He received an audiotape of “America the Beautiful”, performed by the Marching 100 and he practiced the MLK Jr. speech over the audio until the piece had been memorized.
In June 1996, Marching 100 directors, William P. Foster, Ed.D., and Julian White, Ph.D., chose Dr. Moran to perform the speech and his first performance was at convocation on January 9, 1997.
Since his first performance in 1997, Dr. Moran has performed the speech in front of government dignitaries, military personnel, at state prisons, churches, and at competitions with the Marching 100. This year, in addition to performing at convocation, Dr. Moran will deliver the speech on Friday, January 15, at the Tallahassee Branch of the NAACP, MLK Leadership Breakfast, and Trinity United Presbyterian Church of Tallahassee. On Monday, January 20, he will perform during the Tallahassee Branch of the NAACP MLK Citywide March and program, which will be held at the State Capitol.