The Independent congratulates the three recipients of the 2021 Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Legacy Awards: Nate Miley, Ruth Gasten and Denel McMahan.

Each shared a story different from the others, but all showed a commitment to address the inequities in their communities. Whether through launching programs for seniors or children, or bringing awareness to issues that still plague marginalized people, their actions set examples for us all.

As we move forward into a new year following one that saw a global pandemic, police brutality, civil unrest, rioting and destructive wildfire, we can only hope the examples of the recipients cause a ripple effect of positive change and healing.

Spanning different generations and backgrounds, the three award winners honored for their courage serve as an inspiration to others to uphold the legacy of Dr. King, whose powerful words continue to reverberate through the world to this day.

"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."