By Associated Press - Monday, November 3, 2014

ATLANTA (AP) - The first female president of Alabama State University has been chosen to deliver the keynote address at the Martin Luther King Center’s 47th annual commemorative service.

King Center officials say Gwendolyn Boyd will deliver the keynote address Jan. 19 at the Ebenezer Baptist Church Horizon Sanctuary. The service commemorates the 86th birthday of the civil rights icon.

In a statement, King center CEO Bernice King said Martin Luther King Jr. used Alabama State University’s library while working on his Boston University dissertation and the school also offered him shelter after the Dexter Avenue Baptist Church was bombed and during the early days of the Montgomery Bus Boycott.

The annual event is also expected to include several federal and state officials, community leaders and others.

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