Wheeler High School Presents 2018 MLK Awards

“Intelligence plus character—that is the goal of true education.” Those words of wisdom from Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. help describe the shared traits of the students, educators, and community members honored with Wheeler High School’s MLK Humanitarian Awards. During a school-wide ceremony, Wheeler students and staff recently recognized the following recipients of the 2018 MLK Awards:

  • Brockton Davis, Student Award
  • Shawn Doss, Student Award
  • Patty Pace, Community Award
  • Nancy Williams, Faculty Award
  • Ben Needle, Faculty Award

“The [awards ceremony] allows the school to come together as one to remember the legacy that Dr. King has left for our nation,” said Melissa Worthy, a Wheeler English teacher and past recipient of a MLK Award.

Patty Pace was named a recipient of the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Humanitarian Award at Wheeler High School for her community support to the school.

In its twenty-fifth year, the Wheeler MLK Awards celebrates those who have gone above and beyond in their service to the school community.

According to Worthy, Wheeler wouldn’t function without the support of community members. One of those valuable community members is Patty Pace. During her service in school support organizations, the Wheeler mom has helped ensure that Wheeler teachers have the resources they need to educate their students

Inside the school, students are also taking steps to make Dr. King’s dream for America come true.

Brockton Davis, a JROTC cadet lieutenant colonel and Wheeler senior, was awarded a Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Humanitarian Award for his volunteer work and service in the JROTC program.

“In JROTC we talk about making a difference, leaving a legacy. We really want to leave our mark on this community. We want to leave it better than we found it,” explained 2018 MLK Award recipient Brockton Davis, a JROTC cadet lieutenant colonel and Wheeler senior. “So many people have gotten this award before me, and so many people have done so much for this community. It’s really [an honor] to be chosen as one of those few.”

Brockton’s fellow student award recipient, Shawn Doss, was honored for his volunteer work with students with special needs. In addition to his parents surprising him at the awards ceremony, the students with special needs with whom he had built relationships helped congratulate the Wheeler senior.

Although they were not award recipients, other Wheeler students stepped forward during the ceremony to honor the legacy of Dr. King with poetry and musical presentations. One student talked about finding a purpose driven life. The students are not the only ones looking for purpose like Dr. King.

Ben Needle’s family and members of the Wheeler High School staff congratulate Needle on being named a faculty a recipient of the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Humanitarian Award.]

“I ask myself everyday: Why do I get up to do what I do? What’s my purpose in the community? What’s my purpose for the future generations? Through serving, I find the most rewards,” Worthy revealed. “I want my students to always remember that Mrs. Worthy was dedicated to serving those who needed help finding their purpose.”

It’s the teachers’ positive influence on their students and colleagues that make Wheeler educators stand out as MLK award honorees.

The student-packed gymnasium erupted in cheers when Ben Needle was announced as one of the teachers who won a MLK Award.

Nancy Williams was awarded a Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Humanitarian Award for dedication to making Wheeler High School a “better place.”

“The more students we can impact, the greater we can see the world,” said the social studies teacher and AVID coordinator.

Explaining to the Wheeler community in attendance why Nancy Williams deserves an MLK faculty award, a Wheeler colleague said,“[Nancy] works tirelessly to make Wheeler a better place. She is not only a person who lives to serve others, but she is a true humanitarian.”