COLORADO SPRINGS — As we honor Martin Luther King Jr. Day on this day of service, it's also a day to reflect on what it means for those in our community including black and minority-owned businesses.
Kristina Wright has owned Pens & Needles Custom Tattoo Company for the past 13 years. She says, while MLK Jr. Day is celebrated only once a year in our country, it's something she honors and lives up to each and every day.
"I say that because I'm here, I'm able to be a business owner, I'm able to be serve my community, and I'm able to serve others," said Wright. "It's all because of the attitude that was fostered, that we should all be able to come together, that we should all be able to work together."
More than 50 years after his assissination, MLK Jr's words still resonate with her and others. However she also mentioned being a female business owner who's black hasn't always been easy.
"Being black is the highlight of -- the thing that's the most highest that I struggle with sometimes... I don't want to let my ancestors down, I don't want to let younger black kids down."
Wright says so much has changed in the country in the past year, that "MLK day packs a little more of a punch this year for a lot of reasons."
She credits the turmoil and change the country has faced.
"It's extremely important because of all the changes that are happening within America. Those changes are also happening within our community, and it's important to foster hope," said Wright.
As Wright and others reflect on today, she hopes MLK Jr.'s message holds true for the rest of the year.
"People want to be treated equally, loved equally and respected equally, and I think that's the ultimate importance of this day, everyday," said Wright. "It's important that we don't forget today and we continue to work together as a community, as a country and as people."
For more information on black-owned and minority-owned businesses in the Colorado Springs community, click here.