news-category: Campus News

GWU Alumnus and Trustee to Speak for Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Virtual Observance on Jan. 20

a historical photo of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. at the march on Washington, D.C.

Community Invited to Join Event Featuring Rev. Dr. M. Lamont Littlejohn

BOILING SPRINGS, N.C.—Gardner-Webb University will celebrate the contributions of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. in a virtual observance on Wednesday, Jan. 20, at 7 p.m. Rev. Dr. M. Lamont Littlejohn of Shelby, N.C., who is a pastor, GWU alumnus and Board of Trustee member, will present a keynote entitled, “Beloved Community.” Registration, available here, is required for the Zoom webinar, and the community is invited to participate.

Littlejohn’s focus will be on healing divisions and bringing people together. “I will attempt to address ways we can find common place with humanity based on justice, equal opportunity, and love of one’s fellow human beings,” Littlejohn shared.

A photo of Rev. Dr. M. Lamont Littlejohn holding a Bible and standing in his church sanctuary.
Rev. Dr. M. Lamont Littlejohn

JeNai Davis, director of  GWU Diversity and Intercultural Initiatives, believes that the annual celebration of King’s legacy is especially important this year because of the social justice movements that occurred in 2020. “This is what Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. was constantly teaching us about: Peaceful protests and not accepting anything less than what you know a person deserves,” she affirmed. “In addition, the dream that he had for society still hasn’t fully come to light. We are constantly battling the injustices of the world, and until everyone is free and treated equally, there is still work to be done.” 

a portrait photo of JeNai Davis
JeNai Davis

Littlejohn, who received his undergraduate and graduate degrees from Gardner-Webb, is the servant pastor/teacher of Mt. Calvary Baptist Church in Shelby. A native of Kings Mountain, N.C., he began preaching at age 17 and started his pastoral ministry at age 26. Since 2003, he has served Mt. Calvary Baptist Church, and under his leadership, the congregation has experienced spiritual growth in God’s word and spiritual direction in the effectiveness of “doing” ministry.

Littlejohn has a Bachelor of Arts degree from Gardner-Webb. He also received his Master of Divinity degree and his Doctor of Ministry degree from the GWU School of Divinity. Additionally, he has served as the Second and Fourth Vice Moderator of the Ebenezer Missionary Baptist Association. Littlejohn is an adjunct professor at GWU. He currently serves as a member of the Board of Trustees for the Community Math Academy. He is also the chairman of the Board of Trustees for Cleveland Community College (becoming the first African American to hold this position). He has received recognition from many religious organizations and the North Carolina Public School System.

Littlejohn has traveled to Kenya, Africa, and has preached and taught in the city of Magori, Kenya. He has also experienced study tours in Israel, Egypt, Turkey, and Greece. He is married to the Nikki Littlejohn, his best friend of over 20 years. They are have two children, a daughter, L’mia and a son, Lamont III.

For more information, contact Davis at [email protected]

Auxiliary aids will be made available to persons with disabilities upon request 10 working days prior to the event. Please call (704) 406-4270 or email [email protected] with your request.

Located in the North Carolina foothills, Gardner-Webb University is a private, Christian, liberal arts university. Gardner-Webb emphasizes a strong student-centered experience and rigorous academics to prepare students to become effective leaders within the global community. Ignite your future at

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