Our Mission is to Serve the People of Utah and Involve All Sectors—Public and Private—in a Conscious Effort to Promote Diversity, Equity and Human Rights.


About the Martin Luther King Jr. Human Rights Commission

Governor Norm Bangerter signed an executive order on July 1, 1991 establishing the Martin Luther King Jr. Human Rights (MLK) Commission. Governor Gary R. Herbert reissued the executive order on August 28, 2013 and the Utah State Legislature codified the commission into state statute during the 2019 session.

The commission promotes Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day by:

  • Encouraging appropriate ceremonies and activities commemorating the federal and state holiday which occurs on the third Monday of January each year.
  • Providing advice and assistance to governments and private organizations on the observance of the holiday.
  • Coordinating efforts with individuals of diverse backgrounds and with private organizations on the observance of the holiday.
  • Partnering with public education to assist schools in promoting appropriate events to honor human rights and the holiday.

2022 Martin Luther King Jr. Celebration Events


2022 MLK Events in Utah



Westminster College - MLK Celebration

January 13 - February 09, 2022 (Various Events)

  • January 13th - MLK Rally & March @ 4 PM (Richer Commons)
  • January 21st - Virtual Unity Gathering @ 11:30 AM
  • January 28th - MLK Day of Service @ All Day (Westminster Campus)
  • February 9th - Bastian Diversity Lecture: The Unknown Realities of a Community Activist @ 6:30 PM (Vieve Gore Concert Hall)

Salt Lake City, UT


NAACP Ogden Branch Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Holiday Commemoration

January 16th - 17th, 2022 (Various Events)

  • January 16th - MLK Sunday Prayer Vigil @ 6 PM (Utah State Capitol)
  • January 17th (Marshall White Center)
    • Unity March @ 9 AM
    • March for Voting Rights @ 10 AM
    • Service Project @ 11 AM
    • Emerging Leader's Virtual Forum @ 3 PM (Online)

Ogden, UT 


MLK Day at the Discovery Gateway Children's Museum

January 17th, 2022 @ 10 AM-1 PM

Salt Lake City, UT 

University of Utah - "Becoming the Beloved Community" 

January 15 - January 21, 2022 (Various Events)

  • January 15th - MLK Day of Service @ 9 AM (Registration Required)
  • January 17th - MLK Day Rally & March @ 2 PM (East High School)
  • January 18th - MLK Evening with the Arts @ 5 PM @ (Marriott Center for Dance)
  • January 19th - MLK Film Screening & Discussion @ 7:30 PM (Post Theater)
  • January 21st - MLK Keynote Speaker @ 12 PM (Space Limited, Virtual Option Available)

Salt Lake City, UT


NAACP Salt Lake Branch 38th Annual MLK Memorial Luncheon

January 17th, 2022 @ 11 AM (Tickets Required)

Salt Lake City, UT 




King Conversation Series

The commission is committed to providing King Conversation Series to communities in Utah, which reflect on Dr. King’s legacy of service and its meaning in today’s world. Past topics included Juneteenth, LGBT equality, and women and girls in education among others.

As a commission, the hope is these conversations provide an opportunity for people to come together for thoughtful discussion and dialogue, even if they don’t share each other’s values or experiences. The ultimate goal is that each conversation will celebrate and explore service and civil rights as a jumping-off point to explore the personal and social importance of public service and civic engagement.


Explore Events

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Many Stories, One Utah: Utah Martin Luther King Jr. License Plate 

In honoring Dr. King’s legacy, the Utah Martin Luther King Jr. Human Rights Commission hosted an art contest for the official state decal of the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. license plate. With an accompanying slogan of “Many Stories, One Utah,” the selected artwork promotes diversity, equity and human rights and was designed by Eleanor Smith, a former student at Timpview High School and upcoming freshman at Brigham Young University. 

Show your support and order the new Utah Martin Luther King Jr. License plate now available at Utah DMVs. All you need to get started is your current license plate number and the last four digits of your VIN (Vehicle Identification Number). Then, follow the simple steps below to get your special group plate mailed right to your door.

Get Your Plate Today

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Who We Are


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Simba Maponga, Chair

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Bridget Shears, Vice Chair

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Perry Bankhead

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Luna Banuri

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Aanjel Clayton

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Taylor Hartman

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Emma E. Houston

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Caitlin McDonald

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Michael J. Nixon
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Bart Powaukee

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Gabi Sanchez-Jones

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Eddy Thompson