Dr. King Inspired Groundbreaking Work at Henry Ford

“Make a career of humanity. Commit yourself to the noble struggle for equal rights. You will make a better person for yourself, a greater nation of your country, and a finer world to live in.”
Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

This year marks the 15th annual Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day celebration at Henry Ford Hospital.

It’s become an important tradition for us each year to take time to honor and celebrate the life of Dr. King – his words, rhetoric and actions. It’s truly one of the greatest days that we have here on campus.

The Mosiac Singers with the Mosiac Youth Theatre of Detroit gave an amazing performance at the event.

The Mosiac Singers with the Mosiac Youth Theatre of Detroit gave an amazing performance at the event.

Dr. King inspired a nation and he influenced much of the groundbreaking work in racial relations and equality accomplished in the 1950s, 1960s and 1970s at Henry Ford Hospital. 

Throughout our history there have been many employees who have made a “career out of humanity” at Henry Ford.

In honor of Dr. King’s legacy, I want to share with you some of the individuals and groups who hold a special place in our hospital’s history for moving ahead the cause of equality:

MAYOR DENNIS ARCHER
After completing high school in the 1950s, Dennis Archer moved to Detroit to find work to finance his college education. He wanted to become a school teacher.

While working to achieve his goal, former Detroit Mayor Dennis Archer held many jobs; one of which made history at Henry Ford Hospital.

He became the first African American to work in the medical records department at Henry Ford Hospital.

THE “FORDSMEN”
Before Dr. King arrived in Detroit in 1963 to give a version of his “I Have a Dream” speech and lead 25,000 people on a peaceful “Walk to Freedom,” the “Fordsmen” were working to create a more harmonious work environment at Henry Ford Hospital. Continue reading

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Henry Ford Hospital Celebrates Dr. King

Each year at Henry Ford Hospital we take time to honor and celebrate the life of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

“50 Years on the Road to Freedom” by Words I Speak Entertainment at the HFH event.

“50 Years on the Road to Freedom” by Words I Speak Entertainment at the HFH event.

Growing up in the 1960s, Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. had a profound impact on me and so many others in our country.

His teachings during the civil rights movement approached the inequalities present throughout this country.

He was an incredible spokesman in dealing with the injustices of the war we were fighting in Southeast Asia that many of us didn’t understand, especially when we had so much to accomplish at home.

For those of us at that time who were looking to become health care professionals, his themes resonated and influenced the way in which we would approach and practice medicine, as well as policies.

The statement that Dr. King made at the 1966 convention of the Medical Committee for Human Rights is worth repeating:

“Of all the forms of inequality, injustice in health
care is the most shocking and inhumane.”

Continue reading

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Celebrating Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

“All labor that uplifts humanity has dignity and importance.”
Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Henry Ford Hospital was honored today (Jan. 16) to host a great celebration for Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., not only for the man, but the vision and principles that he continues to inspire in all of us.

The Mosaic Singers perform at Henry Ford Hospital.

This site on West Grand Blvd. has been the home of the Henry Ford Health System for more than 96 years. It houses our flagship, Henry Ford Hospital, a great clinical and academic sciences center in the heart of Midtown Detroit.

One of the reasons we’ve been able to achieve such prominence at Henry Ford is evident each day on our campus; the rich tapestry of our diverse work force is a fundamental advantage in the way in which we conduct our work and view the world around us.

You can see it every day in our hallways, emergency rooms, clinics and operating rooms; individuals within our team working together, as a unit, for one common cause: to restore the health and wellness of those we have the privilege to serve.

We’re far more than just a health care facility; we’re an economic engine for the City of Detroit and a beacon of hope for many of those who have been at disadvantage by financial shackles. Continue reading

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