Wednesday, May 27, 2015

MLK Mediation

Martin Luther King, Jr.’s heirs are reportedly closer to a settlement in a lawsuit over the ownership of his 1964 Nobel Peace Prize and his famed traveling bible. In Atlanta, a Fulton County Superior Court judge agreed to a mediation timeframe today-- to be completed before this fall-- during a brief hearing with attorneys from both sides. Earlier this year, the judge granted a stay in the case so that the King's daughter could negotiate a deal with her brothers. According to news reports, her attorney said, "...we feel like we have gotten the parties as far as we can get, which is substantial. With a third party-neutral, we can close the gap." Brothers Martin Luther King III and Dexter Scott King are suing sister Bernice King over the ownership of the fifty-year-old Nobel Prize and King Bible, apparently used and signed by President Obama during his second inauguration. Bernice King believes the items are sacred and should remain with the family. Her brothers want to sell them. King’s estate is controlled by his sons who already sought an order for their sister to surrender the items which are in her possession. In a board of directors meeting last year, they voted 2-1 against Bernice King to sell the two valuable artifacts to a private buyer. Martin Luther King, Jr. was assassinated in 1968. His widow, Coretta Scott King, died in 2006. Yolanda King, the eldest King child, died in 2007. Originally, the case was set to go to trial last February. Sibling rivalries are among the toughest challenges for a mediator to solve. There are times when celebrity adult children can navigate their own conflict, but other times require a process affording for the airing of grievances in a non-public forum, such as mediation. See full stories here-- and