Mayor honors Peace Poets

HONOLULU - A third grade student at Na`au School on Oahu has been recognized as the grand prize winner in the 6th Annual Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Peace Poetry Awards Ceremony at the Mission Memorial Auditorium. Alec Dinsmore, 8, received a grand prize certificate and also an original acrylic painting of Dr. King created and donated by pop expressionist artist Davo. Dinsmore, the Oahu grand prize winner who was presented with a certificate and painting by Honolulu Mayor Jeremy Harris, wrote the poem, "Ocean Of Peace," describing his vision of peace in the world and how peace can cool "the waters of hatred." Close to 900 of students competed in the statewide event, sponsored by the International Peace Poem Project, a statewide volunteer organization that encourages peace and non-violence through literacy. The organization includes artists, writers, business people, and teachers. Close to 300 people from as far as Kahuku and Sunset Beach attended the event in Honolulu on April 15, recognizing the contributions of Dr. King, who demonstrated the use of non-violent means to achieve the goal of civil rights for all people in the United States. The poetry contest takes place in January, during Black History Month, including Dr. King's nationally celebrated birthday on Jan. 15. "Dr. King's dream lives on in the dreams of these Hawaii youths and in their great poetry," said Project coordinator Melinda Gohn. The International Peace Poem Project has collected poetry about peace from more than 120 countries. Project officials were invited to celebrate the 2000 Millennium Peace Day in New York at the invitation of the United Nations. The Project, which started on the Valley Isle, conducts similar contests on Kauai, Hawaii and Maui counties. The Project offers poetry lesson plans for teachers at its website For more information, contact Melinda Gohn on Maui, 661-0517,
or email

Honolulu Mayor Mufi Hanneman listens to Na`au School third grader Alec Dinsmore recite his grand prize winning poem in the Sixth Annual Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Poetry Awards. The ceremony took place Friday at Mission Memorial Auditorium in Honolulu Friday.

HONOLULU, Hawaii - More than 45 students from schools on the island of Oahu were honored for their poetry about peace by Honolulu Mayor Jeremy Harris on March 25, 2000.

The ceremony at City Hall was part of a part of a peace poetry contest to honor slain civil rights leader Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. during Black History Month in February. Besides Harris, those attending the ceremony included Marsha Joiner, organizer of the annual Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. celebration and parade in Honolulu, and Peace Poem Project volunteers Frank Rich and Juliet Begley.

Hundreds of students participated in the statewide contest, sponsored by the Peace Poem Project. Project organizers presented the Peace Poem Project scroll to the United Nations on September 11, 2000.

Honolulu Mayor Jeremy Harris honored youth winners in the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Peace Poem Contest. (above and below)

Peace Poem Project coordinator Frank Rich assists one of the students in reciting their peace poem during ceremonies at Honolulu City Hall.

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