Rochester Institute of Technology has announced CNN anchor Fredricka Whitfield will be the keynote speaker for the school’s annual Expressions of King’s Legacy celebration, Thursday, Jan. 26, as a replacement for civil rights lawyer Michelle Alexander
Alexander cancelled her appearance at the event due to health concerns, school officials said.
Whitfield began her career as a morning anchor in Charleston, S.C., before moving on to positions as a reporter and anchor with NBC News, the Today Show, and Dateline NBC, then CNN in 2002.
She will open the program, which takes place from 12 pm. to 2 p.m., in RIT’s Gordon Field House and Activities Center.
“We are looking forward to having Fredricka Whitfield as our Expressions of King’s Legacy speaker,” Keith Jenkins, RIT’s interim vice president and associate provost for diversity and inclusion, stated. “With more than three decades of experience in global news, she has never lost sight of the people involved in the situations that we hear about through newscasts.”
U.S. Circuit Judge Robert L. Wilkins, who serves on the U.S. Court of Appeals, D.C. Circuit, will also participate in the program.
Wilkins is author of the book, “Long Road to Hard Truth: The 100-year mission to create the National Museum of African American History and Culture,” and will share his journey to help establish what has become the 19th and newest museum of the Smithsonian Institution, the school said.
All events are free and open to the public; however, online registration is requested for the keynote address as well as the afternoon program.
The doors will open at 6:15 p.m., for the evening musical performance; individuals who have registered for the Michelle Alexander event do not need to register again.