July 18, 2019
King Boston Gets $750K to Complete MLK, CSK Memorial

January 25, 2019 — The Boston Foundation and Boston University earlier this week announced they have donated $500,000 and $250,000, respectively, to King Boston, a Boston nonprofit that is working with the city to create a new memorial and programs about Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and Coretta Scott King, to complete "an ecosystem of memorial tributes and their time and work together in Boston."

Paul Grogan, president and CEO of The Boston Foundation (TBF), and TBF Director Rev. Gregory Groover praised King Boston and Mayor Martin J. Walsh for spearheading a community-driven effort to design and create an appropriate set of memorials for Martin Luther and Coretta Scott King.

They called on the Greater Boston’s philanthropic community to support the King Boston effort.

Robert A. Brown, president of Boston University (BU), said the university's donation "will see the project through to completion and ensure that future generations of Bostonians and visitors will appreciate Martin Luther King’s extraordinary legacy and what his years in Boston meant to him, to Mrs. King, and to all of us.”

The future civil rights leader met his wife while earning his doctorate at BU and preached at the university's Marsh Chapel.

King Boston is currently working with local officials on the siting and selection of an ecosystem of memorial tributes to the Kings, as it raises an estimated $12 million to construct a memorial on the Boston Common dedicated to the Kings, as well to create a new King Center for Economic Justice in Roxbury and an endowed speaker series with local partners like Twelfth Baptist Church, local universities, and Boston Public Schools on issues related to the Kings’ ideas and works.

Last October, King Boston raised $500,000 at a sold-out gala held at the Museum of Fine Arts.

The Boston Foundation has partnered with King Boston’s co-chairs, philanthropist Paul English and Rev. Liz Walker, in the administration of the King Boston fund, and provides workspace, guidance, and administrative and technical support for the King Boston Fund.

On Jan. 15, Martin Luther King’s 90th birthday, King Boston and the Boston Foundation partnered to hold a teach-in on Dr. King’s vision of economic justice, held at the historic Arlington Street Church in Boston. The teach-in featured Harvard professors Tommie Shelby and Brandon M. Terry.

King Boston is now working on the following initiatives:
  • A world-class memorial on the Boston Common, the location of marches and speeches for hundreds of years in our city.

  • The creation of a new "King Center for Economic Justice" in Roxbury aimed at improving economic disparities across Boston.

  • An endowment of $1 million with the Twelfth Baptist Church to do MLK-related programming, honoring MLK's time preaching at Twelfth Baptist while he lived in Boston.

  • A new documentary about Martin Luther and Coretta Scott King, focused on their lives and work together in Boston.
Last May, King Boston selected five finalists to design an outdoor memorial on the Boston Common, and expected to announce the winning design in February or March.

King Boston also has selected Boston-based filmmaker Roberto Mighty to produce and direct America’s first documentary, multimedia, and online project about Martin Luther King, Jr and Coretta Scott King’s pivotal years in Boston in the early 1950’s.

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