The Gonzaga community gathered in St. Aloysius Church on February 24th for a celebration of Black History Month organized by members of Onyx, Inc., the school’s organization that strives to enlighten all on the African-American experience. The assembly program included an introduction by Master of Ceremonies Walter Hill III ’16, original poems by Kyle Newman-Smith ’16 and Kyle Taylor ’16, the Black National Anthem performed by Nick Williams ’16, musical performances by the Gonzaga Jazz Ensemble, and a tribute to Martin Luther King, Jr., from Landen Buckson ’17. The keynote speaker was Mr. Kenneth O. Miles ’88, assistant vice chancellor and executive director of the Cox Communications Academic Center for Student-Athletes at Louisiana State University.
Mr. Kenneth O. Miles ’88 grew up in Washington, DC and began his legacy on Eye Street in 1984. Mr. Miles was a stellar student- athlete that played football and ran track at Gonzaga. He graduated in 1988 and played football at the University of Virginia where he earned both a Bachelor of Arts degree in Studio Art and a Master of Education in Social Foundations of Education. Miles was admitted to the Gonzaga Athletic Hall of Fame in 2000.
Here is a four minute highlight of the assembly:
Miles is a member of the Commission on Access, Diversity, & Excellence, Baton Rouge Rotary, and the Baton Rouge Chamber of Commerce. He also serves on the LSU Museum of Art Advisory Board, Board of Directors for 100 Black Men Metro of Baton Rouge, and the Board of Directors for Volunteer of America, Greater Baton Rouge. In addition, Miles is currently serving as President-Elect for the National Association of Academic Advisors for Athletics.
Miles encouraged the young men of Gonzaga to reflect on what legacy they will leave upon graduating from Eye Street. He encouraged them to equip themselves daily, so that they me able to create the change that they want to see in the world.