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Service and Celebration: Serena Williams Awarded the 2021 Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Dream Keeper Award

There are some people who talk about keeping the dream of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. alive. And then there are people who work to keep his dream alive. Serena Williams, Coordinator of Community Services for the Rock Hill School District, is one of those hard-working individuals unselfishly working to preserve Dr. King’s urgency of Now.

In the 1960’s, Dr. King famously called Americans to action: “We are now faced with the fact that tomorrow is today. We are confronted with the fierce urgency of Now. In this unfolding conundrum of life and history, there ‘is’ such a thing as being too late.” 

Serena Williams is not one to wait for tomorrow, “I was raised to serve, created to serve, called to serve.” That fierce sense of urgency motivates her now, as well as throughout her life, to take positive action to improve her community and make Rock Hill a better place.

It is that unwavering commitment and dedication of serving her community that made Williams this year’s recipient for a very special award.  Serena Williams was awarded the 2021 Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Dream Keeper Award.  In a room of socially distanced community members, including her family, Serena Williams accepted the Dream Keeper Award.

“I’m just so humbled,” Williams said, “When you think of Dr. King’s legacy and the amazing leaders in Rock Hill who have been named a Dream Keeper, I’m so humbled by the honor. I’m just doing what Dr. King asks us to do… find ways to fulfill our purpose by serving others.” She believes in being a champion for the people. “I’m so grateful God planted me here in Rock Hill to serve and support all of you,” she said while receiving her award.

The Dream Keeper Award, sponsored by the City of Rock Hill Community Relations Council, is presented annually to someone that demonstrates their impact by fighting for their community and the well-being of all the citizens while promoting racial equality, social responsibility, political empowerment, diversity, nonviolence, and racial harmony.

As the Rock Hill Schools Coordinator of Community Service, Serena Williams serves as the Foster Care & Homeless Education liaison. Within the community, Williams is a board member for the Habitat for Humanity York County, Chair of Governance for the Black Economic Leadership League of Rock Hill, Chair Member for the #1 Question: Is it Good for the Children campaign, and member of the Community Healing Initiative. Williams resides in Rock Hill with her husband and two sons. She is a proud swim mom and enjoys cheering on her sons at their swim meets.

Williams and her family  Serena Williams Headshot