Team Members Share Favorite Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Quotes

Martin Luther King Jr. "The time is always right to do what is right."

Team members share their favorite Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. quotes. They also share their reasons why the quotes are impactful to them.

“We need leaders not in love with money but in love with justice. Not in love with publicity but in love with humanity. Leaders who can subject their particular egos to the pressing urgencies of the great cause of freedom…A time like this demands great leaders.” - Dr. King

I tell my little kids every morning that they are leaders. As Dr. King notes, there are different kinds of leaders; which one do we want to become? We need great leaders who are deeply care for peace and are leveraging privilege to love others.

Dr. Thomas Sison PT, DPT, MTC, Staff Physical Therapist
Andrews Institute Rehabilitation- YMCA


“Everybody can be great...because anybody can serve. You don't have to have a college degree to serve. You don't have to make your subject and verb agree to serve. You only need a heart full of grace. A soul generated by love.”

This quote is important to me because the smallest act of kindness can mean the world to someone.

Michelle Brooks, MBA, BSN, RN, Executive Director
Corporate Compliance


"The time is always right to do what is right."

I have so many quotes from Dr. King that have carried me through the years, but this is one of my favorites. It is impactful to me because it addresses the simplest way to treat everyone equally no matter the race, creed, or religion! Just do the right thing ALL the time! 

Gail Carter, Clinical Informaticist
IT Application Support


“Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.”

While attending an orthopedic meeting in Washington, D.C., I visited the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. monument. There were numerous MLK quotes carved into the granite. The U.S. was in a particularly turbulent and extremely polarized time with opposing factions talking past each other and not listening to each other. I was moved to tears as I read the quotes with the one about driving out hate with love resonating with the words of Jesus in Luke 6:27-36 advising us to love our enemies and likewise, the apostle Paul in Romans 12:17: Repay no one evil for evil, but give thought to do what is honorable in the sight of all, and the apostle Peter in 1 Peter 3:9: Do not repay evil for evil or reviling for reviling, but on the contrary, bless, for to this you were called, that you may obtain a blessing. MLK pointed to Jesus, and Jesus points us to God.

David Chandler, M.D., MHL, Surgeon
Andrews Institute Orthopaedics & Sports Medicine


It is difficult for me to choose just one quote. I have been listening to and reading through Dr. King Jr. speeches and sermons lately. I also watched a documentary titled King in the Wilderness. I am now going to make this a ritual every year. Revisiting his words will enrich my life, for the rest of my life. Among the materials I enjoyed this week are a reading of Letter from Birmingham Jail and "I Have been to the Mountain Top" sermon. There are so many gems of advice and wisdom in all of them. I recommend everyone listen to I Have Been to the Mountain Top sermon repeatedly.

So here are my favorite insights from some works of art by Dr. King:

“Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere”—Letter from a Birmingham Jail

“The time is always right to do what is right.”

“The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy. The true neighbor will risk his position, his prestige, and even his life for the welfare of others.”

“A time comes when silence is betrayal.”

“No matter what color you are, you are somebody. You are worthwhile.”

“When people get caught up with that which is right and they are willing to sacrifice for it, there is no stopping point short of victory.”

“For years, now, I have heard the word ‘wait’. It rings in the ear of every negro with piercing familiarity. This ‘wait’ has almost meant never.”

“Freedom is never voluntarily given by the oppressor. It must be demanded by the oppressed.”

“Justice too long delayed is justice denied.”

From his Mountain Top speech when Dr. King said lines about how he was glad he didn’t sneeze, that was one of my favorite parts.

Kasabi Chinonge, Posting Accounting Representative
Patient Financial Services


“We may have all come on different ships, but we’re in the same boat now.”

I love this quote because it honors our different backgrounds and experiences but points us toward a common goal and vision for the future. I think it speaks to how important it is that we all bring our varied perspectives and skills to make the world, our community, and our organization better. 

Jen Grove, Vice President
External Relations


“If you can't fly then run, if you can't run then walk, if you can't walk then crawl, but whatever you do you have to keep moving forward.”

This quote makes me think that I do not need super power to face insurmountable like challenges. There is always something I can do to move forward. This is my spirit of "Never give up!"

Akiko Hashida, Concierge/Customer Experience Coordinator
Andrews Institute for Orthopaedics & Sports Medicine


“Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.”

This quote is important to me because you must bring love to the fight. If you’re going to drive out darkness, you have to bring light. If you’re going to try to drive out hate, you have to bring the love. It won’t be pleasant, but it’s the truth. Bringing the love doesn’t mean you believe as they do or agree with their beliefs. It simply means that you consider the human bond to be stronger than their hate.

Rashaundra Likely, Talent Acquisition Manager
Baptist Human Resources


“Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter.”

I have always tried to be the type of person that stands up for what I believe is right. All it takes is one instance of feeling like you could’ve done more in a situation and ignoring the “tug” to do so. Then the ache of wanting to go back in time and be a better person in that moment is enough to push you to never be in that position again. Stand up for what you believe in. Stand with those you believe in. Because sitting in silence when your voice could make a difference is a disservice to all.

Melissa McGuire, Access Specialist
Screening and Prevention Services


"We must accept finite disappointment, but never lose infinite hope."  

When I was in high school I was running for an officer position in our senior class. One of my friends told me this quote and said he lived by it everyday. I love this quote because it is so simple yet so true. Hope is something that one should never lose during hard times. Life may throw so many curveballs at you, but hope keeps you alive and helps you move forward. 

Radha Patel, Corporate Scheduling Supervisor II
Patient Access Support Services


 “Faith is taking the first step even when you don’t see the whole staircase.”

That is my favorite quote attributed to Dr. King because faith was/is always my guiding light that helped / helps me get through a lot of difficult times as an African American male growing up in the South experiencing a lot of firsts, such as.

  • Going from an all-black segregated preschool (head start) to an integrated primary elementary school in the early 1970s
  • Accepting offer to play on the Myrtle Grove Pop Warner football team when I was 10 even though I would be the only African American player on the team
  • Taking advanced / honors classes in middle and high school (knowing that majority of the times, I would be the only African American person / male in those classes)
  • Joining the military so I can obtain funding for college and be the first in my family to graduate with a degree
  • Taking business classes at PSC (formerly PJC) and UWF (knowing that majority of the times, I would be the only African American person / male in those classes)
  • Turning down an opportunity to be an Air Force Officer in finance and accepting job offer from Baptist (knowing I would be the first African American male working in the finance division at that time)

Without that faith, I’m not sure where I would be or how my life would have turned out. 

Frederick Sellers, Director of Internal Audit
Governance, Risk & Compliance (GRC)