Pictures: First Family Volunteers in Honor of King

President Barack Obama, first lady Michelle Obama and daughters Sasha and Malia visited a social services organization a short motorcade ride from the White House on Monday, where they served lunch and chatted up clients.

They planned to participate in a service event on Monday, the federal holiday commemorating the birth of slain civil rights leader Martin Luther King Jr. On Sunday, from the pulpit of the Vermont Avenue Baptist Church near the White House, Obama said that like King, he had learned to rely on his faith even as he felt the “sting of criticism.”

Press Release

President, Mrs. Obama, and Senior Administration Officials Honor Martin Luther King, Jr. by Serving

President and Mrs. Obama, Cabinet Secretaries, Senior Administration Officials Honor Martin Luther King, Jr. National Day of Service by Participating in Community Service Projects Around Washington, DC

WASHINGTON, DC – Today, to celebrate the Martin Luther King, Jr. National Day of Service and honor Dr. King’s life and legacy, President and Mrs. Obama, and 10 Cabinet Secretaries and senior Administration officials participated in community service projects in Washington, DC. Led by the Corporation for National and Community Service and the King Center, the Martin Luther King, Jr. Day of Service is an opportunity for all Americans to come together to help meet the needs of their communities and make an ongoing commitment to service throughout the year. This year, the King Day of Service includes thousands of projects – from delivering meals and refurbishing schools to reading to children, promoting nonviolence and more – spread across all 50 states.

“Dr. King dedicated his life to advancing social justice and equal opportunity for all,” President Obama said. “But more than forty years after his death, there is still much work left to be done. Through service, we honor his legacy by helping our neighbors, strengthening our communities and meeting the challenges we face together. I encourage all Americans to not only continue Dr. King’s work through service today, but to make service a part of your lives every day.”

For more on the Martin Luther King, Jr. National Day of Service, please visit the Corporation for National and Community Service at

Please see below for a list of Administration officials who participated in the King Day of National Service in Washington, DC:

  • The President, First Lady and their family visited So Others Might Eat, an organization dedicated to helping people get off the streets and empowering them to make lasting changes in their lives. The First Family served food to homeless and hungry men, women and children.
  • Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner prepared hot and cold food for area shelters at Washington Hebrew Congregation.
  • Attorney General Eric Holder prepared meals for local area homeless at Church of the Epiphany.
  • Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar and Director of the National Parks Service John Jarvis participated in a clean-up and site beautification project at the DC War Memorial on the National Mall.
  • Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius visited and spoke with underprivileged care recipients at an on-site H1N1 clinic at the Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial Library.
  • Secretary of Transportation Ray LaHood removed trash and participated in a community clean-up project with Living Classrooms near the Navy Yard.
  • Secretary of Education Arne Duncan and Corporation for National and Community Service Acting CEO Nicky Goren participated in a school painting and beautification project with City Year at Ron Brown Middle School.
  • Secretary of Veterans’ Affairs Eric Shinseki helped prepare food for distribution to area soup kitchens at DC Central Kitchen.
  • Council on Environmental Quality Chair Nancy Sutley participated in a canvass kick-off and door-to-door canvass with Weatherize DC to encourage homeowners to weatherize their homes.
  • Peace Corps Director Aaron Williams prepared and served dinner for the homeless at Miriam’s Kitchen.


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