Civil Rights Memorial

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Picture Civil Rights 1

Why A Civil Rights Memorial?

The City of Victorville Civil Rights Memorial was established to recognize the achievements of individuals who have made a significant impact in promoting the civil rights of all people. The Civil Rights Memorial is located at the southwest end of the employee parking area at City Hall, 14343 Civic Drive, Victorville, CA 92392.

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. was the first civil rights leader memorialized with a bronze plaque in the Civil Rights Memorial. Shortly after its unveiling, the City of Victorville established the Civil Rights Essay Contest.

What Is The Annual Civil Rights Essay Contest? 

Each year fifth grade students who live in Victorville and attend a school located within either Victor Elementary School District or Oro Grande School District, are invited to write essays about an American civil rights leader and indicate why he or she should be honored within the Civil Rights Memorial.

The winning essay determines the civil rights leader to be honored in the Civil Rights Memorial and a portion of the student's winning essay is displayed on a bronze plaque for the civil rights honoree.

Plaques recognizing Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., Asa Philip Randolph, Frederick Douglass and Cesar Chavez are currently displayed at the memorial based on winning essays from previous years.

Essay Contest Judging Criteria

The City of Victorville Community Services Advisory Committee (CSAC), evaluates student essays based on the following criteria:

  • Content:  Clearly express ideas in an organized manner.
  • Expression:  Original voice and clear presentation of topic.
  • Research:  Valuable content and/or research incorporated into essay. 
  • Originality:  Treatment of theme should show imagination and human interest.

Meet the 2018 City of Victorville Civil Rights Memorial Essay Winner

On December 18, 2018, Mayor Gloria Garcia and Victor Elementary School District Superintendent Jan Gonzales recognized Penelope Trylch, winner of the 2018 City of Victorville Annual Civil Rights Essay Contest.  Penelope penned her winning essay about civil rights leader Harriet Tubman, while a student at Galileo School of Gifted and Talented Education.

Mayor Garcia also thanked both The Dreamers, Visionaries & Leaders (DVL) Project and Desert Valley Hospital & Medical Group for sponsoring the bronze plaque honoring Harriet Tubman.

 2018 Civil Rights Essay Winner - City Council Meeting Photo - 12-8-2018

 Read Winning Student Civil Rights Essays

2018 Harriet Tubman winning essay by Penelope Trylch

2017 Cesar Chavez winning essay by Hanna Reynolds

2016 Fredrick Douglass winning essay by Diego LeComte

2015 Asa Philip Randolph winning essay by Reiner Yabut

How Can I Become A Sponsor?

Sponsors are currently being sought for the 2019 Civil Rights Essay Contest. To sponsor the next contest, and have your company name included on the bronze plaque for generations to see, please call (760) 955-3306, or send an email.