Joe Stumpf Places Third in MLK Contest

Joe Stumpf Places Third in MLK Contest

Riley Guyette, Staff Writer, Advanced Journalism

Joseph Stumpf, a junior at NDA, recently won the third-place prize in the 10-12th grade age group in Brown County’s MLK poster, essay and poetry contest. Stumpf received a Flex 5 Chromebook as his award.

The Brown County Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Celebration Committee, a non-profit organization with the goal of celebrating diversity and working towards social justice in the area, hosts an annual event that allows the community to come together to celebrate the life of MLK. 

This year, for its 27th annual event, K-12 students within the Brown County and Oneida Nation school districts were encouraged to enter either an illustration, creative writing piece, or narrative with the theme “The people’s march continues.” 

Students’ submissions were compared to others around their age level. 

The competition announced its winners on January 15, two days prior to Martin Luther King Jr. day. 

Stumpf was inspired by his mother to join the competition. 

“My family participated in the past when we were younger, and I decided to try it again this year,” he explained. 

The process of writing the poem was fairly easy for Stumpf.

He claimed, “I came up with an idea I thought was good, and it was pretty easy from there.” 

MLK was one of the most influential characters in recent American history.

“Martin Luther King Junior is representative of not only a generation of people but also the whole civil rights movement,” said Stumpf. “He can be seen as the figurehead of the movement. He gives people a person to tie their beliefs to and go to for inspiration.” 

Below is Stumpf’s third-place poem: 


Did the march in Birmingham ever end?

Do the dreams of those sprayed with water, arrested, and jailed for time 

Never allowed to cross the march’s Finish line

Still reside inside us


With each step we each take today


Continuing a march 

That happened over 58 years ago

Until this day


Do the footsteps still echo through Washington 

From August 28, 1968, 

All the way to

August 28, 2020


The movement created by those oppressed,

To gain equality between all mankind

Is kept alive with each step we take

Not only in remembrance

But also in progress,


For we today,

Continue that very same march

Which has traveled so very far

Mile after mile,

Day after day,

The People’s March Continues