LAFAYETTE, La. (KLFY) — To honor Martin Luther King Jr., the MLK Holiday Committee held a commemorative program Monday night.

A woman who made waves in black history in Louisiana was the keynote speaker.

Bernette Joshua Johnson made history in the state by becoming the first african american Chief Justice of the Louisiana Supreme Court.

Johnson says MLK day is a holiday that should be remebered every year.

“It’s been great to be here in Lafayette with Senator Boudreaux and all of his great folk in Lafayette and to just commemorate the wonderful work Dr. King did and to say thank you for all of his sacrifices,” Johnson said.

She says MLK day gives us the opportunity to reflect on his service and says it gives opportunities to build bridges instead of barriers, where racial injustice is still impacting some.

“That’s our obligation, to move forward and for this generation of young people to put their shoulders to the wheel and deal with the pressing issues of the day. Notably, voter suppression… that’s an issue for today. We shouldn’t be fighting the same battle every 50 years. So I’m hoping we can get the John Lewis Voter Right Act passed and that we won’t be worried anymore in America about whether you can enjoy the right to vote,” she told News Ten.

Johnson says Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. had a dream, and it’s up to the community to make sure his dream doesn’t die.