Skip to main content
Find a DoctorGet Care Now
Skip to main content
Search icon magnifying glass







MLK Awards

Attending the Martin Luther King Jr. Community Service Awards ceremony were (l-r): Christopher O’Connor, YNHHS CEO; Ena Williams, RN, YNHH chief nursing officer; Melissa Turner, YNHHS chief human resources officer; awardees Maryam Chatak and Natshon Spearman; Katherine Tucker, RN, YNHHS clinical program director, outpatient programs, Heart and Vascular Center; Francine LoRusso, RN, YNHHS senior vice president, Operations, and executive director, Heart and Vascular, Transplant, Medicine and Radiology Services; and Alan Friedman, MD, YNHH chief medical officer.

YNHH presents Martin Luther King Jr. awards

Each year, Yale New Haven Hospital presents its Martin Luther King Jr. Community Service Awards to New Haven high school students who exemplify the civil rights icon’s ideals. On Feb. 27, Yale New Haven Health’s Institute for Excellence and the hospital’s Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Belonging Council presented the awards to two students, who researched and wrote about Martin Luther King Jr.’s contributions. 

Maryam Chatak, Hill Regional Career High School: “The difference between responding and resorting to violence has been a major source of inspiration for me from Martin Luther King. Emerging from the breathtaking landscapes of Afghanistan, a nation steeped in unparalleled beauty, my journey has been marked by the backdrop of ongoing conflict. Among these difficulties, my parents’ wisdom guides me – facing violence doesn't require responding with aggression.” 

Natshon Spearman, New Haven Academy: “Dr. King’s ideology and advocacy for others have left me with deep inspiration. Dr. King didn’t let the oppressors control the aspects of his life or the aspects of others’ lives. Dr. King continued to persevere and prosper through unfavorable conditions. Dr. King has taught us to never stop fighting even when we are faced with the hardest of challenges or conditions; it may take an unknown amount of time, short or long, but change will eventually come if you continue with your belief and practices.”