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Donell Edwards Natyana Rochelle Mason Bullington Danni Harris Chaela Gray Kalynn Johnson Gerrell Johnson Cat Melendez Natyana Rochelle Dervedia Thomas Tanya Knight Starling Thomas Arilia Winn Natalie Jobity Dr. Leona Johnson


There has been so much going on in this world that I just wanted to take the time to not only say be safe but take the time to love and hold your loved ones because life is too short. I hope everyone enjoyed their holidays and take some much needed time for self-care and rest. R.I.P to a fellow Clark Atlanta University student, Alexis Crawford. Fly high Panther, your good spirit will be missed.

Natyana Rochelle




06 BRANDING: A BURNING PASSION Branding is an undeniable part of the experience at Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCU). Many persons see this act as barbaric or simply gross.


...juggling a fiancée, motherhood, school, and now a business did over¬whelm me, but I didn’t want to let this dream go, so I pushed through.





Alexii Alijay photo courtesy eonline.com

Do be true to yourself and remember that fashion is a way to say who we are without having to speak.

32 LAMAR IS WINNING BUT... This shift may be unsettling for some NFL fans who don’t understand that winning should be the main focus of a player’s likability and not his race or past transgressions.

DEPRESSION IS KILLING THE BLACK COMMUNITY According to the Health and Human Services Office of Minority Health, Blacks are 20 percent more likely to experience serious mental health problems than the general population.

SENIORS TRANSITIONING INTO THE PROFESSIONAL WORLD Basic degrees just won’t cut it anymore and if you don’t build relationships with the right people or build your resume with internships in your field, finding a job after graduation is going to be an obstacle for you.



2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 202 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROS 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 202 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROS 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 202 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROS 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 202 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROS 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 202 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROS 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 202 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROS 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 202 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROS 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 202 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROS 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 202 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROS 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 202 A new adventure is coming for you in this new year. A new partner in crime is going to be HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROS coming into yourHOROSCOPE space. There might a time where you feel stagnant for most the 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 2020beHOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020ofHOROSCOPE 202 year but don’t worry! You can push through it! Don’t fight the things you can’t control this year and don’t burn HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROS 2020 HOROSCOPE HOROSCOPE 2020grateful HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020over. HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 202 yourself2020 out. Focus on what you’re for and the things you have control HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROS Buckle in for a bumpy ride2020 this new year. Radical2020 change will be coming into HOROSCOPE your 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE HOROSCOPE HOROSCOPE 2020 202 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE life like a tornado. This HOROSCOPE may seem a bit2020 chaotic, but don’t worry, you are stronger 2020 HOROS 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020you HOROSCOPE HOROSCOPE HOROSCOPE 202 than this change and the universe doesn’t give you things can’t handle. 2020 The way you approach2020 situations, HOROSCOPE your 2020sense HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROS of purpose and your health may be the main things that will shake up your year. By the end of 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 202 be a completely person and amazing gifts will flow to you with your new mindset. HOROSCOPE 2020 2020you’ll HOROSCOPE 2020 different HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROS 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 202 This new year for you is about self-reflection. You may feel like you’ve been ignored HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROS by many or even taken for granted, but just know your worth. Don’t forget2020 to express 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE HOROSCOPE 202 yourself in the ways you truly can be you. Drama may be coming to you this year, please try to avoid it but 2020 HOROS HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE HOROSCOPE HOROSCOPE 202 stand your ground. Many things from the past are 2020 going to be coming to2020 light this year. This is2020 a timeHOROSCOPE for HOROSCOPE healing 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020but HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROS childhood wounds, remember you can’t change the past. 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 202 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020It’sHOROSCOPE HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE time to focus2020 on your own needs this new year. Self care2020 is theHOROSCOPE best care and 2020 HOROS 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 even HOROSCOPE 202 it’s time to tune into your body and treat yourself. It’s time to date yourself HOROSCOPE if2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROS you’re in a relationship. Taking care of yourself can help with your spiritual growth. Breakthroughs are 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 202 as well, just choose words carefully. less emotional andHOROSCOPE more logical with your words. Clear 2020 HOROS HOROSCOPE coming 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 your HOROSCOPE 2020 Be HOROSCOPE 2020 2020 HOROSCOPE away emotional and mental clutter this year. 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 202 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROS new year keep a low profile. A transformation is happening where you need to2020 have more 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020This HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE HOROSCOPE 202 alone time with yourself, which will help you grow subconsciously. Grow into a routine of 2020 HOROS HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 2020 Continue HOROSCOPE HOROSCOPE 2020 are HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 202 meditating andHOROSCOPE grounding yourself. to work2020 on your goals! Big rewards coming for you so work HOROSCOPE quietly 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020that HOROSCOPE HOROSCOPE and be patient.2020 MendHOROSCOPE your relationships with friends and family you’ve been2020 having trouble with, 2020 HOROS 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 202 and don’t let your pride get in 2020 your way. HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROS 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020for HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 202 This new2020 year isHOROSCOPE all about discovery you. Travel far because you can make a home HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPEanywhere 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROS you go. See the world, find your cultural and spiritual roots! Your ancestors 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 202 calling you! Try not to idolize relationships make sure you create clear boundaries with peo- ple. 2020 HOROS HOROSCOPE are 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020and HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE Be mindful of your space and protect your energy. Put your desires in the front and center. Rebel a littleHOROSCOPE this 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 202 year, be selfish. Don’t yourself when it comes to your passions! HOROSCOPE new 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020limit HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROS 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 202 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROS










SCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 SCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 SCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 This coming new year is for you to evaluate your relationships. Take an honest look at the SCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE groups you associate with: Do2020 you like them? Can you trustHOROSCOPE them? Can you be yourself 020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE HOROSCOPE 2020 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 around them? Don’t hold on to relationships that don’t serve you. Be yourself and you’ll find people who are HOROSCOPE SCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 similar to you. Know your worth, your own authority figure and learn2020 to thicken your skin because a lot 020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020be HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 SCOPE 2020of HOROSCOPE HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE tough love is2020 coming your way. 020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 SCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE HOROSCOPE HOROSCOPE HOROSCOPE This new2020 year pay attention to2020 your words because2020 they have power. The2020 truth HOROSCOPE 020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE HOROSCOPE HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 may be demanded of 2020 you this new year, but2020 just remember to collect yourself. SCOPE 2020ItHOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE HOROSCOPE 2020 aHOROSCOPE 2020 may be a little2020 hard HOROSCOPE to express these truths but you owe2020 it to yourself. You learned lot about yourself HOROSCOPE 020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 past years and now it’s time to bestow your wisdom to others. This is a great time to find a tribe of like SCOPE 2020these HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE minded individuals. 020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 SCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE This new yearHOROSCOPE is going to be your This positive energy and 020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 2020year! HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 a new sense of adventure is coming your way! You are truly SCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020a HOROSCOPE layered person and this new year HOROSCOPE may bring out another side of you that you HOROSCOPE must embrace,2020 even though 020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 SCOPE 2020you HOROSCOPE 2020 2020 might not feel theHOROSCOPE proudest about it. HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 SCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE HonorHOROSCOPE your limits this2020 year. HOROSCOPE Let go of the weight you carry for others, 020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 and this may2020 be easier said than done. This is a time to tackle your self SCOPE 2020destructive HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE habits and pursue your creative gifts. Let your deep inner sources of wisdom and love guide you 020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 this new year. Your intuition will be high so, trust it. Don’t let your concerns or anxiety weigh you down. SCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020You HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 don’t have to follow the rules this year, just make your own. You are SCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE most rebellious sign and don’t conform with the HOROSCOPE status 020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020the HOROSCOPE 2020horoscope HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 2020 quo, but this new year find some sort of structure that you find comfortable for yourself. You haven’t been HOROSCOPE SCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 passive lastHOROSCOPE year and been 2020 speaking your mind on political and personal issues which has caused lot of 020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020aHOROSCOPE 2020 SCOPE 2020conflict. HOROSCOPE HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 2020with HOROSCOPE Tackle 2020 your old trauma this year, find healing energy andHOROSCOPE sur- round yourself people who2020 don’t HOROSCOPE 020 HOROSCOPE 2020 alienate you.HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 SCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE HOROSCOPE 2020and HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 This new year will help you2020 see yourself more clearly more compassionately as SCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE you continue to heal yourself. You are a natural healer and deeply in touch with your 020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 emotions. You may start feeling out of place while circumstances continue to change, but this is the universe SCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE teaching youHOROSCOPE to adapt to new environments. More 2020 and more people you can trust are coming into yourHOROSCOPE circle 020 HOROSCOPE 2020 2020 HOROSCOPE HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 2020 this new year. SCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 SCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE 2020 HOROSCOPE







BRANDING A Burning Passion

Branding is a second degree burn inflicted by a heated iron.

By Dervedia Thomas Guest Contributor Branding is an undeniable part of the experience at Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCU). Everyone has either seen someone with a brand and been mortified, thought of getting one or felt the heat themselves. One senior history major that was interviewed for this article, who is part of the Omega Psi Phi Fraternity Inc, has felt the heat 19 times. He has brands on his back, both sides of his shoulders, his hips and both his wrists; one of which is dedicated to a deceased member of his chapter. Many persons see this act as barbaric or simply gross. Most of the National Black Greek Letter Organizations (BGLO’s) including the Omegas have even publicly distanced themselves from this practice and underscore that it does not form part of their official rituals. Fraternity members however, say it is a personal choice that shows their devotion to the organization and that legitimizes their membership. “When I first came out I was just so excited to be an Omega,” he said. “It was a goal that I always wanted to attain, and once I got here, I crossed, had my coming out show; I was


Many persons see this act as barbaric or simply gross.

the mind-set of all the atrocities that happen in the world like people being burned by the stake or just being burned period because of dumb stuff people did then.” When asked if he had any second thoughts before the brand was placed on his skin he said, “I was like, why the heck am I doing the dumb s@&#, but I was thinking this is actually something I want. It’s just like with anything in life, you’re going to do some stupid stuff to get what you want but at the end of the day you’ve got to think is it worth it, and to me it is.” After getting the brand, many persons try to intensify the scar by itching it lightly or gently rubbing it with a loofah sponge as it begins to heal. Our interviewee said he used to hit them despite the excruciating pain that it caused to intensify the scar. Healing isn’t easy either. The brands on his hip forced him to sleep sitting down for a month and even interfered with his ability to have intercourse.

wearing the shirts and doing everything I was supposed to, but it just didn’t feel real to me until I made it legit. The brand to me signified, OK; you’re really an Omega now.” Students pledging Greek organizations gain not just membership, but a new family which they often refer to as brothers or sisters. This bond is something he says he has never experienced. “Before I pledged, I knew a lot of people, but I never really had any close friends. Omegas are about friendship. When two Omegas see each other, we’re just ecstatic, the way we greet each other and we just saw each other yesterday. It has also enabled me to become friends with people that I would probably have never talked to.” Branding is a second degree burn inflicted by a heated iron. In this case, it is a clothes hanger twisted in the form of an Omega that is pressed on the skin for about five seconds. The person inflicting the burn is often called a Hit Master and many fraternity members even have parties where branding is done. “My first brand was on my chest,” he explained. “This one actually hurt and right before he branded me I could see the hair on my chest burn and then I saw all the smoke from my skin come up to my face and I smelled my skin burning. It puts you in

Critics of the procedure are not limited to non Greeks. According to the book “African American Fraternities and Sororities: The Legacy and the Vision” by Clarenda M. Phillips, members are often confronted by other members with the idea that branding is associated with cattle and slavery. The author cites the Black code of 1685 which states that slaves were punished by branding for unlawful assembly or escape. A few fraternity members including one who emphatically stated that he disagrees with the practice, were interviewed in this book. “These guys take it on themselves,” he said. “They think that that’s the only way you can be a real Q which is asinine…I just don’t believe that you need to disfigure your body. But if it’s something that people get a kick out of, fine.” Men are not the only Greek members who engage in branding, while it is more taboo, there has been a marked increase in women being branded after the 1990’s, with the upper thigh and bikini line being the more popular locations. Despite the criticism, branding has a history of its own in the Omega culture. According to one member, during World War I, members could not be identified when their bodies came back from war. As such he said, many were not given the Omega funeral as is customary. As a result, “brothers” were branded on their torsos in case their limbs were blown off. It was also pointed out that branding was a ritual done in Africa to symbolize manhood. To avoid discrimination in professional settings, his 19 brands which coincide with his line number, are not visible in a long sleeved shirt. He acknowledges that his brands could cause discrimination from potential employers and also deter other people from approaching him. “If you look back in history, we as human beings, what we don’t understand we fear, but if you have an understanding of Greek life you will know; we love what we love.”

ABOUT THE WRITER: DERVEDIA THOMAS Dervedia Thomas is a financial journalist covering mutual fund trends, strategy and the latest news. She is a graduate of South Carolina State University and was a regular contributor to The College World Reporter student empowerment magazine.


FRESHMAN SURVIVAL How to Survive Your Freshman Year By Tanya Knight, MBA Guest Contributor Nobody can have doubts about the fact that the freshman year of college turns out to be one of the most important and influential years in anybody’s life. Your first year in college and away from your family can be exciting and challenging. These challenges will give you a chance of knowing who you are and what you know. College life unfolds in itself a unique phase in our journey towards a successful future. This journey presents you with fun-filled, exciting and challenging opportunities on the academic and social front. You must be prepared to face these opportunities in the right manner that will transform them into stepping stones towards success in your career! If you feel lost in college, don’t get frustrated. Almost everyone goes through this phase and everyone thinks that they are the only ones to go through this experience. It is not true! All of us have experienced this strange feeling one time or another. With this article on freshman year survival, you can ease your introductory phase into college life and convert them into the best and most memorable years of your life! With the assistance of some simple techniques and tips, you can handle your first year of college in a successful manner and get the most out of your college in terms of academic success and personal happiness. These strategies will help you handle the most important chapter in your life. All your concerns and questions, worries and anxieties about your first year in college can be handled well. Your freshman year in college will turn into an enjoyable and memorable experience. There are various issues that may disturb you in your initial days at college. You may feel extremely embarrassed about


certain aspects about yourself like your socio-economic, financial and economic background, your language, looks etc. Do not get bewildered by these issues as these are only ‘passing clouds’ and can be easily handled with some mental make-up. And one more thing, all these feelings are extremely natural. So do not worry and feel that you are the only one that experiences such a situation. First and foremost, there is a secret strategy that you need to adopt to handle your freshman year. This strategy is called “The CPO Strategy”. Are you wondering what this is all about? Let me explain. This CPO theory expects you to stay Calm, be Positive and always be Optimistic.

 STAY CALM You need to be very calm and cool in your approach. Your freshman year in college can corner you with some surprises. But, you should not let yourself lose your temper.  BE POSITIVE I always advise students to maintain a positive attitude about their college experience. Being positive will mentally strengthen you and empower you with amazing selfconfidence that will make your freshman year more enjoyable.  STAY OPTIMISTIC One more important thing that I want

you to remember is that ‘Optimism is the best way of assuring success in life’. So try to be optimistic in your approach and open in your attitude.

5 TIPS FOR BETTER FRESHMAN YEAR SURVIVAL: ATTEND ORIENTATIONS This is the most important tip that I suggest to all new students going into college. Attend your orientations over the summer. This gives you the opportunity to meet your future class-mates and know more about them. Attending orientations also gives you the golden opportunity to start getting comfortable with the campus.


GET INVOLVED IN COLLEGE ACTIVITIES One more way of surviving your freshman year in college is to keep yourself mentally active. The best and most healthy way of implementing this is to actively participate in your college club activities, sororities or sports teams. Apart from other advantages, this will keep you constantly engaged and will lessen the moments of your home sickness.


If students enter college with an open mind, it would really help them to cope up with the surprises of the initial year in college. Being optimistic will make students happy and excited about their college and open to any kind of change. It is this openmindedness that ultimately puts you in a proper mental shape. With an optimistic outlook towards life, you will automatically be prepared for the unprepared. Your college can be a place that endlessly offers you surprise packages. Adjusting to all these changes may sound uncomfortable but we should remember that “the only thing that is constant is change”. Change is a necessary part of growth. Coping up with any change can be extremely difficult. But with the secret CPO strategy, you will be mentally tuned to accept these changes in the right manner and your comfort level with the college will start increasing with time. Remember, every new experience comes with anxiety, uncertainty and grief. To cope with this new phase of life that brings with it some exciting opportunities to learn more about yourself and about life, you need to be in perfect ‘mentalshape’. The CPO strategy will help you be in that shape and will prevent you from feeling lost in your college.

BE DISCIPLINED Discipline in your life takes you to greater heights. So try to bring in a certain amount of discipline in your everyday activity. Get yourself into an orderly style of living your day-to-day routine (like wake up hours, preparation time everyday, extra-curricular activity on a regular basis and so on). Your main aim at this point of time is to work hard and get the best possible grades. Devote your energy and resources towards this end.


GET ORGANIZED College life needs to be taken a lot more seriously than your school life. It is here that you are building a strong foundation for a successful future. Be more organized in your approach towards studying.


LEARN TO SEEK HELP You must get to know your academic advisor in a proper manner. This person happens to be the most precious resource at your hand. With the able guidance of the academic advisor, all your issues pertaining to your course conflicts, changing course, deciding on your subject of specialization etc can be handled in an amazingly easy manner to the best of your interests. Never hesitate to go for professional help when you think you are in need of it.


You are at college as a result of your hard work at school and the efforts and prayers of your loved ones. Do not leave any stone unturned in laying your groundwork for a successful college career. Try to survive your freshman year in the best possible manner.


Have fun as well as learn as much as you can and get the most from your college life and you will be able to look back at your freshman year with a smile later in life…

As America’s Education Coach, Tanya is a skilled advocate for the importance of higher education. The acclaimed author of Who Says You Can’t Go to College?,  she is also an engaging public speaker and personal mentor.  A graduate of Columbia College, Tanya also holds an MBA in Leadership from Grand Canyon University. She is currently completing her Doctorate in Education Leadership with a focus on retention.  Tanya’s diverse client list includes high school students, adult learners, school districts, colleges, universities and Fortune 500 corporations. Each and every client receives personalized services that draw on Tanya’s extensive experience working in the fields of education and human service for more than 10 years. MISGUIDED MAGAZINE | 9


Why won’t I let you love me? I’m selfish. I’ll never allow you to love me before me, I won’t allow my heart to be free to love anyone else outside myself. If only I knew how to, But why do I lie to my soul, And till in this state of denial. Why won’t I let you love me? I never received this degree of kindness at such an immense amount, As much or intense to count; The times you’ve told me you loved me. That can be very heavy on a man with no love for himself and without, A sense of mental health. Why won’t I let you love me? It’s simple, because I’m difficult. I seem easy but I’m very critical, And yes, I know my looks seems pitiful; But that’s just who I am. I’ll never forget that you tried to love me, I just need time to learn me, then love me; So I can love me and then you can love me for me.



NORVALE Duerson The New Voice of Social Consciousness

Host Of The New Social Justice Program







To submit your request, be a guest or for more information, contact Norvale Duerson at cwrmedia@cwrmedia.net.

to The CWR Talk Network blogtalkradio.com/bthechange

A Working Wife, Mother, and Entrepreneur’s Redemption Story By Chaela Gray

Up until my sophomore year in college, everything was fine. My grades were looking good and I just got a new man, my now fiancée, William. I didn’t really have to juggle anything at the time because I was only taking one class that semester, which was a major chemistry class. Since, I had a lot of time from that, William and I traveled together a lot when we first got together. Six months later, William and I are in Savannah, GA on vacation and I found out I was pregnant. I wasn’t scared or upset about it, I was actually calm and just got prepared. I didn’t go to school for the next couple semesters so I could save and get ready for my baby. After I had her, I thought I could go back and finish school right away, but I was wrong. Now, juggling a newborn, fiancée, and school, I ended up failing that class I was taking. I felt defeated and like a failure, but I didn’t let that stop me. I re-evaluated my time and made a schedule for myself. That fall semester when I went back, I made it my mission to not only pass the class I failed but pass the other classes I was taking as well. It worked out for me and I ended up passing all my classes. I was feeling better about my classes, the schedule I made, and myself. I felt like I could conquer anything, so I did just that and decided to open up my own business. I’ve always had a passion for dance ever since I was three. I always knew I wanted to open my own dance studio and I felt like at that moment, it was the right time for me. Still, juggling a fiancée, motherhood, school, and now a business did overwhelm me, but I didn’t want to let this dream go, so I pushed through. A year after my daughter was born, I opened a dance studio with a family member and I was excited, nervous and even a little doubtful, but my dream was coming true in front of my eyes. I struggled to get students at first, but I didn’t let that discourage me because I had marketing plans to get dance students.


Once students started coming in, things were going smoothly until misunderstandings began happening between the family member and me. I don’t think she understood everything I was juggling because when asked to pick up a little more slack because I had to be with my baby, go to class, do homework, and take care of the house, it was an issue. I don’t blame her for anything though, it was just time to go our separate ways, so I opened another studio on my own this time. I had students follow me over, which was good, and everything was going good again until I got deeper into my chemistry classes and I needed more time to study, so I wouldn’t fail again. This took away time from the dance studio and I lost students because of it. I started to feel overwhelmed again and defeated. I failed again, I kept thinking to myself. After talking to some family and business owners, I got insight and wisdom on how all businesses have ups and downs but its about how you get back up that matters. I decided to get up and keep going. I just had to re-evaluate my schedule again because of the changes. After getting back reorganized and focused by joining study groups, making dance classes on the weekends only, and spending time with my family, I was back to me and happy. Some advice I would give to mothers balancing home, school, and a business is to make time for yourself. You have to schedule that in. Also, make time for some fun, whether it’s chilling with some friends, or going out to have some drinks, do something you enjoy for your mental health. And talk to someone when you’re overwhelmed or going through it because it helps. Mental health is important especially when it comes to being a mother and multifaceted. Laughing and smiling is the best medicine; we need to do that more often and just stop to enjoy life.

Freshman Year versus

Senior Year By Natyana Rochelle

Many freshmen enter college with big aspirations and goals. They feel as though they will take over college and change the world. Over four years however, freshmen mindsets and opinions change. Many seniors now, including myself, have said they have changed a lot since being a freshman. First excited about school, now just ready to graduate and start their careers. What changed? During freshmen orientation, high school graduates get the opportunity to walk around the campus and experience college life. Orientation leaders, professors and staff all come together to get freshmen excited about their next journey. There are events and seminars during freshmen week to help be a guide. After that week, freshmen are on their own and life begins to hit. No parents to wake us up for class and nobody there to remind us of assignments that are due. For many students, college is a place to find yourself and begin to transform into independent adults. There are many things that students have said changed during their four years of college. Their diet, figuring out their career path and finding a balance between school and a social life.

Many have heard of the freshman 15, which is the belief that every freshman going into college gains 15 pounds. According to The Atlantic, this is a myth that was started in the 80s when research showed that the average freshman gains eight pounds. What once started out as freshman 10, ended up becoming freshman 15 after being covered by different magazines. A study has also shown that it became freshmen 15 because students were drinking more, which adds four or five more pounds. This is a myth because a quarter of freshman from a new study have said they lost weight, while only 10 percent gained 15 or more pounds. I lost five pounds my freshmen year. I didn’t start gaining weight until my sophomore year. Even though, I lost weight, I wasn’t eating healthy. I ate anything I could get my hands on. It was easier to eat junk food in between classes because I didn’t have time to cook or watch what I ate, but I had to eat. Once I began to gain weight and noticed my body wasn’t healthy, I changed my eating habits and started cooking and eating healthier snacks. I had to make time for it, just like I had to make time for everything else. According to HBCU Career Center, fifty percent of college students change majors at least once before they graduate. It is common for freshmen to enter college not knowing exactly what they want to do. Even those that come to college with a clear vision of what they want to do, their career path could still change once they get to school and experience new things. College students change their majors when they discover their V.I.S.A. or their vision, interest, skills and abilities. Students take their major classes and realize it’s not what they want to do, or they take elective classes not in their major or concentration and find they are passionate about something else.

I always knew I wanted to be a writer, but I didn’t know exactly what I wanted to do. I just knew I didn’t want to be a reporter. It wasn’t until I took a film and editing class that I realized I had a passion for filming and editing. I now, want to write scripts and direct movies. Even though, my concentration is Journalism and not TV or Film, I have taken a lot of electives that reflect the field I’m going into. For many freshmen, it is their first time away from home and they have freedom like they never had before. They are trying new things, making new friends and just want to have fun all of the time. The problem most freshmen seem to have is that they come to college and forget why they came. They are having so much fun and begin to put school in the background. After the first semester of my freshman year, I saw my grades and wasn’t proud of the work I put into school or studying. I had to remember I came to school to get an education first, so I had to learn to prioritize. There is always going to be a party happening, but my work comes first. As a senior now, my attitude has changed over the years. As a freshman, graduation seemed so far away and like an afterthought because I figured I’ll have a job and life will be set for me as soon as I graduate, but I didn’t want to worry about it because it was so far away. Now that it’s right around the corner, that’s all I can think about. I’m thinking time went by quickly, and even though I have an idea of where I want to end up career wise, I still have to find my own way getting there. I’m excited to be in the real world, and I plan on taking everything I learned in my five years of school with me.


LONELY My dress from last night was no longer wet and clinging to my skin, but airy like it never touched a drop of water. The house was crowded with people I knew and didn’t know. My mother, held by my father, as she sobbed into his black suit rocking back and forth on the silver couch. I’ve never seen my father cry, but his face turned deep mahogany as his chin quivered attempting to keep his composure. My brother with his hands balled into a tight fist, and his mouth clamped together trying not to sob out loud. “What’s up with everyone?” I asked aloud looking at my grandmother. A sob escaped her lips as she turned away from me to go outside. A group of kids from my school pooled inside from the front door in all black. What the hell? I barely talked to them, so why are they just showing up in my house? “Thank you for



coming,” said reverend Smith sullenly. “What’s going on,” I began to ask again when the Reverend walked towards me but looked ahead like I wasn’t here; like a boulder rolling through grass, he walked into me going through me like I was smoke. My body began to shake. “What, what’s happening?” I asked shakily. I walked up to my mother who cried even harder as she tried to heave air in and out. “Mom?” she continued to cry, “Dad, guys stop you’re scaring me?” I said as he held my mother tightly with his eyes shut. Fear and confusion coursed through me like a river. “What’s going on?” I shouted, trying to get people’s attention, waving my arms and stopping in front of them just so they can walk through me.

I went into the backyard following the crowd of strangers and family. My best friend Destinee was being held by my brother, they both cried quietly. I reached out to touch her shoulder as my hand sinks into it, she shivers but continues to cry. I glided through the crowd to see my face enlarged on a portrait with my cap and gown surrounded by flowers and candles. My chest felt heavy and painful, as I let out a deep sob. I turned to the crowd, “No! I’m right here! I’m right here!” I shouted, but it didn’t faze them. The candle flickered wildly, my portrait began to shake. I ran back inside and my mother was on the floor now, “My baby...my baby,” she sobbed painfully. “Mom look at me,” I pleaded, feeling tears as hot as fire rolling down my cheeks. “Look at me!” I screeched the window behind me, it cracks like

a walnut under pressure. My mother snapped her head up, “Baby?” she looked at me. “Mama I’m right here, I’m right-” She gets up quickly and walks through me to the window. “No,” I sobbed looking down at my yellow flowy dress with a deep red hole in my stomach, blood streamed down the yellow fabric. The house was so full but I never felt more alone.



Reality has sunken in, Maybe the lady was destined for this.

Poem by Danni Harris

Her fate won after all. She has become one with her drink.

Swallowed by depression (and) cuddled with misery,

Misery is her friend, Misery is her only company.

A vodka bottle hanging over the edge of her bed Pouring all of its hatred onto the f loor.

Please lady, change your ways, This bottle is harming you.

Records scratching on the player That old sad song repeating in the air.

On the outside lady is smiling, She’s seen as the perfect example.

Furious storms rumbling outside of her window The echoing of madness soothes her.

At home, she’s rummaging for loose change Speeding to the liquor store.

She reminisces. How did I get here she asks? Why? How?

They know this beautiful lady so well, Never could they imagine her ways.

Why is alcohol my only friend? How did I allow this to happen? Will drugs do this to me? Will the swirling of powder in the air take over the whiskey scents swarming around? Nothing cures depression. Its only contained. All cabinets destroyed. There’s evidence of frustration. Every bottle is empty, The even emptier ones are splattered against the wall. The lady who said she’ll never drink, Has become an uncontrollable alcoholic after all. It was only supposed to be one time. Never should this have become the case. 18 | MISGUIDED MAGAZINE

Lady has died, But not alone. Her bottle still warm in her hand...

Danni Harris is a twenty year old, MetroAtlanta native. Danni is currently a second semester sophomore at Clark Atlanta University. At Clark Atlanta University, Danni majors in Mass Media Arts (Journalism) and History. After college, Danni plans on going to graduate school to obtain a Doctorate’s degree in History. Her dream careers include being a Sports Journalist for the National Basketball Association (NBA) and a Historian. Since she was a young child, Danni enjoyed writing both poetry and stories. With Misguided Magazine, Danni hopes to get more exposure and recognition for her literary work. In the near future, she hopes to publish her own poetry collection as well.

NORVALE Duerson The New Voice of Social Consciousness

Host Of The New Social Justice Program







To submit your request, be a guest or for more information, contact Norvale Duerson at cwrmedia@cwrmedia.net.

to The CWR Talk Network blogtalkradio.com/bthechange

While everyone was celebrating the new year and claiming the year as theirs, entertainers and fans all over mourned the death of 21-year-old rapper, Lexii Alijai. Although, her cause of death is still unknown it doesn’t take away the fact that she died way too young, along with other rappers and entertainers. Alexis Alijai Lynch, or Lexii, was an inspiration to many. The Minnesota rapper touched many lives with not only her music but her spirit. She released many mixtapes before getting her big break in 2016 as a feature on Kehlani’s song “Jealous.” From that, she gained the attention of many artists and released another project that featured Elle Varner. She got the opportunity to perform at Soundset Music Festival opening up for artists like: Playboi Carti, Lil Uzi Vert, and Rich the Kid. The following year, Lexii released a remix of “Redbone” by Childish Gambino and “Me, Myself and I” by Beyoncé. Gaining more recognition and fans, she released her first full-length debut album, “Growing Pains.” Still touring and making music, her fans anticipated her next major project that will no longer come.


Rappers Gone Too Soon By Natyana Rochelle


Other young rappers and entertainers that died in 2019, were either from illnesses, drugs or gun violence. Arizona rapper, Traphouse was only 35 years old when he died from Stage 4 pancreatic cancer. In March of 2019, we lost rap legend, Nipsey Hussle to gun violence. He was fatally shot in front of one of his stores. Twenty-one year old, Willie Bo, a rapper from California was fatally shot by police officers outside of a Taco Bell. Twenty-five year old, Kevin Fret, an openly gay Puerto Rican rapper was fatally shot, while driving his motorcycle. Thirty-one year old, Nina Ross Da Boss, a female rapper from Florida was the victim of a double homicide. Twentyone year old rapper, Juice Wrld overdosed on drugs he had taken before going into an airport which caused him to have a seizure and die. There has to come a point when we question not only rappers’ lyrics but also check on their mental health status as well. Most of the lyrics from rap artists are about using drugs and gun violence. Fans hear this and want to be like their favorite rapper so, they begin to experiment with drugs until a rapper abuses it and loses their life. Just like a lot of people in the world that uses drugs to cope, rappers and

entertainers do too. The pressures put on them every single day to be good role models, put out music in a timely manner, set trends, and still be authentic and real can be hard on an artist, especially when they are also dealing with other things, like family issues, fake friends, money problems, etc. At the end of the day; rappers are humans just like we are, and as fans we have to realize that everything we go through, they do too, but ten times worse because the whole world is watching and judging. We don’t allow artists to really be themselves. In a lot of rappers’ lyrics, if you just listen, a lot of them are crying out for help. Them rapping about drowning in drugs or using them to cope is a cry for help, but unfortunately, just like a lot of people, they won’t get the help they need because it is diregarded. So, when will mental health be taken serious? Too many people are using different things to cope and then find out that it doesn’t work. Drugs don’t fix any problems, it just buries them until they have to resurface.



Natyana Rochelle is a college student at Clark Atlanta University pursuing Journalism. She has written for magazines such as Boss Magazine and YBE Magazine. Although, she is getting a degree in Journalism, she ultimately aspires to write scripts and direct. Having many dreams, she plans to go to graduate  school to pursue a degree in Entertainment Law. Natyana loves to write and hopes to have a lasting career writing in many different aspects and ways. 


The Unique between Colin Kaepernick

When he was originally blackballed, he should’ve gone to the Canadian Football League and continued his career. I know players these days look down on the CFL. We should never forget the impact of Warren Moon, who went undrafted in the 1978 draft, went to the CFL and won five Grey Cup titles – He was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2006. To me, it looks like Colin Kaepernick doesn’t understand his power, if the NFL is racist or is actively colluding against him then there is strong evidence to support that. However, let us always remember, as African Americans we must know our value and understand “They need us, we don’t need them”.


If Kaepernick doesn’t want to play in the CFL I totally understand so, let’s pool our resources and start our own league. We can all come up with the many reasons on how difficult starting a professional sports league will be, but let’s not forget the blueprint has already been established. Ice Cube started the BIG 3. League in 2017. After 3 seasons he has already received offers for purchasing of this League based on its early success. The NFL is already comprised of approximately 70% African Americans, so the talent and player personnel is in place.

Another week of NFL football has passed, yet the biggest story is seemingly the never-ending saga of Colin Kaepernick vs. The National Football League. No one could have predicted what would have happened when Kaepernick decided to take a knee three seasons ago. Kaepernick’s silent protest to bring awareness to police brutality has turned into a collusion lawsuit settlement, a political feud with the President, and the growing mistrust between the NFL players and team owners. We’ve heard several opinions from both sides of the argument. Some say Kaepernick should have a job because other quarterbacks aren’t as talented and the league is still actively colluding against him. Others claim that Kaepernick isn’t really interested in playing and that this is all for personal gain. As a fan of the NFL and Colin Kaepernick, it was interesting that after several years the NFL requested a private workout with Kaepernick and then requested he sign a document stating that he can’t sue under any circumstance in the future. More transparency is needed for a full understanding of what went wrong. Either way, I wish Kaepernick saw himself the way we see him; a man in his prime with years left to play and plenty of talent to offer.


CARMELO ANTHONY Carmelo Anthony finally got another job in the NBA after being signed by the Portland Trailblazers, it took years of workout videos, interviews, the nickname “hoodie Melo”, and

Parallels and Carmelo Anthony

By Gerrell W. Johnson the fans got what they wanted. Let me preface that I’m born and raised in Western New York and what Carmelo Anthony did for Syracuse by winning the 2003 NCAA title will never been understated. He gave us a look nationally of the many talented players in the Western New York area. In Carmelo’s first two games back he continued his quest to prove isolation ball works by shooting 4-14, and 6-15 respectively. Again, when the NBA decided to move on from isolation ball and Carmelo’s outdated game didn’t fit why he didn’t go play overseas is a solid question. I know a lot of Professional athletes look down on these other leagues. However, the blueprint for success is there - Stephon Marbury won three championships overseas and rebuilt his career and image. Marbury’s game included a high volume of shots, turnovers, and controlled chaos, the same game Russell Westbrook, James harden, Kyrie Irving and others are praised for these days. Many times the best lessons learned in life come from the No’s we receive. One can only dream of Kaepernick winning a CFL championship, or starting a new league for players who desire to be in the NFL. Carmelo could’ve gone overseas and averaged 25 points 7 rebounds then allowed his fans to support him in a new way. Sports conglomerates have a way of painting a narrative of players once they are finished with them, usually leaving the fans wanting more. Nowadays, players have more options than ever to continue to play professional sports and build their brand without begging or bending to a system or job they feel has done them wrong.

ABOUT THE WRITER Gerrell W. Johnson is a screen writer and actor in Atlanta with a passion in sports, comedy, education and urban culture.



Depression has been killing the black communit y for centuries This mental health condition has caused many to harm themselves or even take their own lives. Many suffer in silence and through my research I found out why that is. Without getting the help that people needs, they rather go through it alone and help themselves, which is only killing them faster. Even after slavery and during the civil rights movement, the humiliation, disenfranchisement, segregation, and fight that blacks had to endure caused a lot to lose hope at some points, which also caused depression. Not only is having depression hurting the black community but not speaking about it has caused many to suffer in silence. According to U.S Department of Health and Human Services, 9.4 percent of Black people committed suicide in 2015 and the numbers have only risen since then. Blacks are suffering in silence, not speaking to a professional, and drowning in drugs such as antidepressants. Since the second millennium, depression has existed and affected many people. In Mesopotamia there were writings that explained depression as a spiritual condition rather than a physical one. The idea of depression being caused by demons and evil spirits has existed in cultures such as; the Greeks, Romans, Babylonians, Chinese and Egyptians (Schimelpfening, 2019). So, knowing that black cultures like the Egyptians knew about depression, we know that depression has been around in the black community for over 400 years. Depression is not only a mental condition but can be classified as a mental illness. Mental Illnesses has existed as long as humans have existed yet, there are little to no references available on people of African descent before the 1700s. In the early 1800s, a physician and medical director in Virginia, John Galt said that blacks are immune to mental illnesses. He suggested that enslaved Africans could not develop mental illnesses because they didn’t own property, engage in commerce, or participate in civic affairs like voting, or being able to hold office.


There can be many causes for depression such as: early childhood trauma, brain structure, medical conditions, drug use, stress, grief and loss, environment, or it can be hereditary. According to the Health and Human Services Office of Minority Health, Blacks are 20 percent more likely to experience serious mental health problems than the general population. Black youth who are exposed to violence are at a greater risk for PTSD by over 25 percent. Black people are also more likely to be exposed to factors that increase the risk for developing a mental health condition, such as homelessness and exposure to violence. After the 13th amendment abolished slavery, blacks had already suffered so much by being separated from their families, beaten, humiliated, raped, watched their friends and family killed, and being oppressed that a lot of them suffered from mental health. Not only that, but many had PTSD from everything they wit nessed and experienced. Now, after going through all of that, blacks are being told they are free, but not really and they have to go fend for themselves, stay on their sides, keep their mouths closed, and stay oppressed. Thrown into poorly standard housing and neighborhoods, and not given employment to be able to pay for it or take care of their families. Many blacks went back to what they knew in terms of becoming housekeepers, maids, butlers and nannies in order to provide for their families. Survival became the way of living for blacks. While many blacks went to get employed by the people that enslaved and oppressed them, many had the mentality that they were going to get money themselves. This is where gambling, numbers running, and different things deemed illegal now arose. The survival mentality came to many blacks, so they learned to take care of themselves. In Sex Workers, Psychics, and Numbers Runners by LaShawn Harris, she focuses on black women in New York during the 1930s. She explains that during this time, women were forced into sex working and numbers running to be able to take care of home. She states that being confined to the same communities and living structures made it difficult for blacks not to notice everything going on in their communities. Blacks had to stay on their sides and in their own communities, so they saw all the problems and issues

taking place, but nobody fixing or doing anything about it. This caused many people to turn on each other because they are angry, sad, confused, and mistreated with nobody to take all of that frustration out on but each other. The government, police, and whites in general didn’t care to fix anything or be around to hear any concerns blacks had, so being that we are only around each other, all of that frustration is going to come out one way or another. In this study of depression is killing the black community, I studied how long black people have been suffering from depression, why many suffer in silence, and are antidepressants really helping? From initial research, I found that 20 percent of black people are more likely to experience serious mental health problems than the general population. Only about 30 percent of black people with depression or a mental illness receive treatment each year versus the average 43 percent. This is because of distrust and misdiagnosis. Constantly, black people have been negatively represented and discriminated against in the health care system. Misdiagnosis, unequal treatment, experimented on, and cultural misunderstandings by health care professionals has caused distrust which prevented black people from receiving or staying in treatment. Also, socio-economic factors play a role because many black people don’t have health insurance. In 2017, 11 percent of black people had no form of health insurance.

that suffered from depression while 18 said they didn’t. Twenty males answered that neither they nor a family member took medication for depression while five answered they did. Sixteen females answered that neither they nor a family member took medication for depression while nine answered they did. For the question why do you think many suffer in silence, I received many different answers. The top answers I received from both genders were pride, ego, money, no health insurance, and no support from family. From my research and the surveys, I found that men and women handle mental health differently. While women may be more willing and open to talk about their feelings and emotions, men are not and that’s for many different reasons. I do believe, however from some conversations I had with the students who took the surveys, some didn’t have knowledge if their family members were ever depressed or taken medication for it. This leads me to believe that conversations about depression and mental health issues are not being talked about in families, which is why so many suffer in silence and feel like they have no support when in actuality, if they would have opened up and talked about it then the support would have been there and they wouldn’t have to go through the tough moments alone.

I surveyed 50 students on Clark Atlanta University’s campus, 25 men and 25 females. I passed these surveys to students in my class and just some walking around campus that I stopped and asked to fill it out. I asked the questions: do you suffer from depression, do you know if anyone in your family suffers from depression, are you or a family on/or ever taken medication for depression, and why do you think many suffer in silence? From the survey, I found that out of 25 males, seven answered they suffered from depression while 18 said they didn’t. Out of 25 females, 12 answered they suffered from depression while 13 said they didn’t. Fifteen females answered they knew someone in their family who suffered from depression while 10 said they didn’t. Seven males said they knew someone in their family

Natyana Rochelle is a college student at Clark Atlanta University pursuing Journalism. She has written for magazines such as Boss Magazine and YBE Magazine. Although, she is getting a degree in Journalism, she ultimately aspires to write scripts and direct. Having many dreams, she plans to go to graduate  school to pursue a degree in Entertainment Law. Natyana loves to write and hopes to have a lasting career writing in many different aspects and ways. 


LE AVE M E B E My life, but that’s that.

Leave me be.. Why me? Why me? Why me? Who do I blame? For this horrid life of mine, The one engulfed in flames. Who to fault? Who to pray to? I feel deceived.

From a child, I was cursed. Born into a family of dysfunction, That left me scarred and damaged. In all my years, I carried fears that were matched with tears.

I. I, who have nothing, From nothing; With nothing.

I was abandoned, I was nothing. From a young age, I wanted out.

I became something. Here I am, Alive!

Neglected and blamed, I wanted an end. I was through.

Open, ready! I am one. I have arriven.

But saved, I am still here.

Arisen, From that damsel of distress.

There’s purpose in me, I have lived. I made it!



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FROM COLLEGE TO CAREER: SENIORS TRANSITIONING INTO THE PROFESSIONAL WORLD By Starling Thomas Guest Contributor This fall thousands of incoming freshmen geared up for the next four to five years of their life in college. Students packed dorm rooms and small apartments to capacity with laptops and books and embraced on a new journey that will help them take their life to the next level. Most of us have been preparing since high school for college and we have had some sort of idea of what to expect, whether it be through conversations with people or family members or campus visits, we have had an idea of what is to come. Freshman year is the most fun and exciting year to be in college. Football games, fraternity parties and pulling all nighters is something that most college students will become accustomed to, but for students who are coming into their senior year are looking at stepping into a downsizing economy that could make it extremely difficult to find a post grad job. Transitioning from college to career has been a major issue concerning new grads. According to the national Center for Education Statistics, about 2.9 million students are expected to graduate in 2020 with a bachelor’s or associates degree, but a careerbuilder.com survey stated that 74 percent of employers  plan to hire recent college grads.

“There is way more competition in the market than there has ever been before,” said recent graduate of University of Texas at Dallas, Jaime Gales. “Basic degrees just won’t cut it anymore and if you don’t build relationships with the right people or build your resume with internships in your field, finding a job after graduation is going to be an obstacle for you,” said Gales. Anysa Wilson, who graduated with a degree in business administration in marketing from Florida A&M University, says she had to settle for a job as a retail manager at a women’s clothing store to earn a paycheck. She is making money but the fulfillment of the job is not there. “The problem did not come in finding a job; it came in finding a career. I had jobs in college; I want something that challenges me every day and this path is not where I want to be.” Wilson said if she could she would have done more internships to gain more experience. “These companies don’t want to hire you if you do not have at least some entry level experience in whatever field you are trying to go into,” said Wilson. “I know I will find the career path I want, I just wasn’t prepared for it to take this long, so in the meantime I just do what I have to in order to pay my bills and student loans off.”

According to CBSmoneywatch.com, the highest paying degrees are those in engineering, mathematics and sciences such as computer science, physics and bio chemistry, with some salaries starting out with as much as $97,000 a year. Although this economy has left some grads with a sense of uncertainty about their future and finding their dream career, preparation has become the key to success. Myriam James, recent psychology graduate of Florida State University says that building your resume and attaining internships throughout college has a major impact on being able to find a good job after graduation.

“Without experience these companies don’t want anything to do with you period, I had friends that struggled to find a job after graduation and I was determined to not let that happen to me,” said Wilson. Wilson opted to continue her education and is attaining her master’s degree while working as a case worker for the Department of Children and Families. Today’s graduates face a tough job market and a commandingly obscure professional future and in this professional world these recent graduates are entering into, the only thing constant will be change.

“I had an internship every semester, most were unpaid or were for little or nothing but I gained experience and that’s what is most important.”

ABOUT THE WRITER: STARLING THOMAS Starling Thomas is a filmmaker and her current project “Harvest,” which was written and directed by Ms. Thomas, is in the festival circuit now. It’s a short film about the harvesting of African American’s organs in America. She is also a writer on Season 2 of #Washed premiering later 2020 on Amazon prime. MISGUIDED MAGAZINE | 29

C AT M E L E N D E Z ’ S Q U I C K F A S H I O N

DO BU Y LASTING CLASSICS. Classics never go out of style and keep you from having to buy new things every year just to stay fresh.

DO BU Y A LONG TRENCH COAT and throw it over Jeans and a turtle neck to give you that extra oomph us girls love to have when we walk out of the door.



to make a statement with little effort. Plus they are timeless.

DO FINISH OFF YOUR LOOK with a pair of statement sunnies. My go to sunglasses are Aviators or Mirrored flat tops.


and remember that fashion is a way to say who we are without having to speak.


It’s not flattering or feminine and the look is old school, dolls.



but please do wear a classic stud diamond earring and a nice wrist watch. This will spice up your everyday looks.

Lamar Is Winning but... Vick Apologized but... By Gerrell Johnson

In only his second season in the National Football League, Lamar Jackson has not only led his team to the top seed in the AFC, but he also threw a league high 36 touchdown passes and rushed for a quarterback record 1,206 yards—good for 6th overall in the league. Not bad for the guy who waited alongside his mother to be selected dead last in the first round of the 2018 NFL Draft by the Baltimore Ravens. Better yet, not bad for a ‘running back’. Jackson’s historic season should be celebrated loudly, unfortunately his success and accomplishments seem to be undermined with racism. A day after Jackson lead his team to a tough win against the San Francisco 49ers in which Jackson ran for over 100 yards, a San Francisco sports reporter stated the reason Lamar Jackson is hard to tackle was because ‘the ball is the same color as his skin’. The sports reporter was suspended, not fired. That’s another story for his employer to discuss. Jackson’s silent response to blatant racism was brilliant. He wore white gloves and white sleeves in his next game to prove (to no one’s surprise) that defenders still couldn’t tackle him with success. Jackson is the clear front runner in this year’s MVP race based off his skills and leadership alone. Unfortunately, here we are discussing race when it comes to the success of a black quarterback. This season has seen a shift in quarterback play unlike the NFL has ever seen before: Jameis Winston, Dak Prescott, Russell Wilson, Patrick Mahomes, and Deshaun Watson—all people of color—will finish the season in the top 10 in passing yards and touchdown passes thrown. This shift may be unsettling for some NFL fans who don’t understand that winning should be the main focus of a player’s likability and not his race or past transgressions. Jackson’s record rushing year broke a 13-year record held by one of his idols Michael Vick. This feat will be one that will be extremely difficult to break in the future in the NFL’s increasingly pass laden offenses.


Vick is currently under fire, since the NFL announced he would be honored at the Pro Bowl. Many animal rights activists have again positioned Vick as the face of animal abuse and have redirected their protests toward him. However, Vick continues to apologize for his role in a dog fighting ring and still speaks out against animal cruelty. Vick also spent 548 days behind bars and had his $100 million contract voided. He repaid his debt to society and is a free man. So, when will we let him live a free unencumbered life? Also, let’s look at some facts regarding animal rights. Every year we flock to zoos, aquariums,  circuses,  and the world-famous Kentucky Derby. Maybe our animal rights activists should protest, boycott, and bring awareness to the damage they are doing toward animals. Society has yet to make animal cruelty or abuses such as cock fighting and dog fighting palatable for mass consumption.  We normalize breeding a horse to run around a track for a minute and if they underperform or get injured, they get euthanized.  It’s normal to see circuses parade African elephants around for tricks. The zoo wants us to believe their 700 pound tiger is happy walking in circles in its cage. Trust me, I genuinely believe that if society can monetize cock fighting or dog fighting, we wouldn’t be talking about Vick. We would head to Vegas and place our bets on the mean looking dog in cage #4, while dressing up to drink fine liquor with other successful patrons.  Society has been tricked so much that the Kentucky derby has been a sign of wealth or privilege if you attend and bet on a horse race. I, myself along with the majority of society are complicit in animal abuse and cruelty. I take my family to zoos, and aquariums frequently.  I support rodeos and circuses also. Until we are honest about how much money plays a role into who we support and what is acceptable in society, we will never see the truth on how impactful our actions are. Vick lost millions of dollars, went to prison and paid for his crimes. I wonder what price we should pay for our complicity.

ABOUT THE WRITER Gerrell W. Johnson is a screen writer and actor in Atlanta with a passion in sports, comedy, education and urban culture.



Although more people are aware of mental health issues and diagnoses, the majority still can’t tell when someone they love is struggling with it. It’s no surprise as most people who have a mental health illness don’t initially recognize that they are struggling with it themselves. When they do come to it, a number of things can happen. What happens next weighs heavy on a person’s sex and cultural background. That’s why AriAnnah Edwards, founder of SisTreat in Little Rock, Arkansas, a non-profit created for women by women to remove the mental health stigma got started. She aims to create a healing space for girls and women experiencing mental health disparities. AriAnnah has an up-close and personal connection with this matter. Attributing the launch of her non-profit to witnessing the difficult moments of her friends and family members who are minorities and women.


As someone who has also expericed a mental health illness, she said, “ It’s not talked about enough. The resources aren’t there. The information isn’t there. The education isn’t there. It’s not as prevalent.” Whereas in other communities they don’t seem to be lacking anything. AriAnnah hopes to change that reality. “We [minorities] also have a different set of obstacles,” the majority of therapists are not from a minority group. Noting that when someone has a mental illness, they progress better and maybe even faster when they meet with someone who looks like them and who is from their culture. Although they teach therapists how to be culturally aware, and they train therapists on how to allow their clients to explain their culture to them, that might not be enough. There is something special about connecting with someone who looks similar to you and who can help you.

CONTACT SISTREAT: 815 Technology Dr. #242292 Little Rock, AR 72223 Phone: (501) 291-3361 Email: contact@sistreat.com sistreat.org

SisTreat represents the idea of, “Sisters retreating.” SisTreat wants other minority women to know that they are not struggling alone, nor are they healing alone. There are other women out there similar to them.

ABOUT THE WRITER: ARILIA WINN, Contributing Writer Arilia Winn is a twenty nine year old California girl. Arilia graduated from Bethune-Cookman University in 2014. There she received a degree in Mass Communication. Working for an employment agency by day and running a publishing company at night, she enjoys helping others. Her dream is to run her small business full time and work with creative people everyday. Since she was a young child, Arilia enjoyed writing and playing on the computer. With Misguided Magazine, Arilia hopes to continue to help others as well as reach Millennials who are interested in self-publishing. In the near future, she hopes to help more poets get published as National Poetry Month is quickly approaching.


DRESS TO IMPRESS Dress Like A Winner By Natalie Jobity, MPhil, MBA Guest Contributor


e’ve all heard the phrase “dress for success” but when you get to the nittygritty what does it really mean? Dressing for success is more than just the clothes you wear. It is your total image presentation, which includes your clothing, but also how you accessorize, the way you communicate, how groomed you are, your poise and posture, nonverbal cues, your ability to maintain eye contact, and more. Because research has proven that people make first impression judgments about us primarily based on how we look, the “dressing” part of dressing for success is very critical. The way you dress impacts how you are perceived as a professional. As you progress through life and your career, you’ll find it increasingly important to cultivate your personal brand, inside and out. Dress like a winner and you’ll find yourself elevating faster and more exponentially than your peers who dress poorly. So how  does  a winner dress? They own their signature style. Your style becomes part of your personal brand which in is critical. Your personal brand is your advertisement about who you are and what you stand for. It must be credible, authentic and sustainable. This is what will leave a lasting impression on professors and bosses, and help secure things like letters of recommendation, or internships.


They understand the benefits of investing in high quality clothing. They are aware that quality is associated with success. They invest in themselves before asking others to invest in their company, product or service. This does not necessarily mean that the clothing you wear must be expensive. A few high quality investments (such as a classic white oxford, well-tailored pants, a classic pair of shoes) can offset cheaper pieces and add polish to an easygoing look. They don’t abuse “business casual” dress codes. They get that business casual wear typically means mixing an informal piece or two into their regular business wear. Like a solid tee under a jacket. Or nicely tailored slacks paired with a blouse. It does not mean wearing an outfit you would wear to a casual occasion.  They ensure their clothing fits them impeccably  whether they are wearing a suit or a sheath dress. Have your clothing altered by professionals as needed or pay attention to the designers and brands that work well for your figure and proportions.  If your $1,500 Brooks Brothers suit puckers, pulls or is too tight you’re better off wearing a cheaper alternative that fits you to a T. Tailoring is fairly inexpensive, but it is also easy to try on several options when shopping. If the item doesn’t fit you perfectly, look for an alternative. If the item is one that you cannot do without, have it altered. 

They pay attention to the accent pieces that impact their image and make them a stand out. For men, your tie is your signature, followed by your watch, belt, shoes. Invest in these accents and select them wisely. For women, your signature can be your shoes, handbag, jewelry and also scarves and how they’re worn. Makeup should be subtle and enhance your natural features, and hair should not be too distracting. They are business appropriate  and know that the way they dress speaks loudly about the type of professional they are. They choose classic or timeless designs. They don’t follow fashion trends and instead invest in clothing uniquely appointed to reinforce their professional goals. Though there is nothing wrong with trendy clothing, your internship or job interview is not the best place to experiment with the latest fashions.  Save the trend pieces for the weekend, and wear classic looks to the office. Take your presentation of yourself as seriously as you do your work and master the nuances of your image, personal style and communication. Doing so will ensure you are noticed in the best possible light and put you head and tail ahead of your peers who take their image for granted. Confidence is also key. When dressing to impress, make sure that you feel comfortable in your clothes, adjust your posture, and smile. These are the little things that can set you apart from the rest.

ABOUT THE WRITER: NATALIE JOBITY Natalie Jobity is a business coach & consultant who empowers visionary women to champion their calling courageously, lead from their core values, and succeed professionally by leveraging their signature strengths. She is the former Founder and President of Elan Image Management, an image consulting firm and is the author of “Frumpy to Fabulous: Flaunting It. Your Ultimate Guide to Effortless Style”. Natalie has worked with women and men nationwide to help them project a signature style and an image that positions them for success in all areas of their life. The Unveiled Way Business Coach & Consultant

Elan Image Management, LLC Owner and Image/Branding Consultant Writer, Author, Marketing Consultant http://nataliejobity.com/be-simply-inspired/


A Lot Has Happened Since You Left Poem by Roscoe

You’ll never believe the scene,

Folks were still outside about a

jammed streets and jam beats as

mile wide and music still blasting

feet walk along from the yard to

with the party still lasting.

the porch.

I said, “Lemme peep my head

The heat scorched and I was bored

downstairs, see who’s there.”

as nupes looped around my living

I walk down and all around,

room, meanwhile I was upstairs

it’s the same stuff.

getting my things prepared. Deep. Four wheelers and more females than you could see. I could’ve socialized, but that’s not me. You see, I’m not the one to want

Folks in the kitchen, swishin and rolling; Neos outside, just twisting and strolling.

my face all out in every snap, every

I go to take a step outside to

story or every HBCU category. The

enjoy the breeze, but I see two

party’s still gonna go on,

faces with braces that I always

I made a difference, but I don’t make a difference. But enough about that, it gets

recognized from Phases. I thought to myself, say what’s up and I spoke it;

darker, the sun goes down and it’s

But my voice is soft, and with loud

about to go down.

music I don’t think they noticed.


I thought nothing of it, as I did with the rest of the night. I’m just glad the event didn’t conclude, in a giant fist fight. As usual the daylight wakes me up, better than my alarm does. Thankful for the day, I check my phone for the buzz; “Let me see my timeline and how lit it was,” I thought, but I saw something different and lit it was not. I saw this picture, on the gram, it looked instantly familiar. And what made me curious was the people in particular.

It seems like I just walked by them, It seems like we were just turnt. Now I’m crying for them, Now, my heart hurts. We had to come together as a family, we had to consolidate and condolencize. The size of this family is too big for anyone to feel small in this situation of unfortunate circumstances. The transition was entirely too quick, one minute we’re lit and the next we’re... This. But I know y’all looking down

It was those faces with braces I

on us, clowning us because you

saw from Phases, “I just saw them

wouldn’t want us crying.

yesterday...” the caption read; I laughed a little bit, like nah they ain’t dead. So I was done with that noise, it made me a little bitter.

I look at this as a testament to become better than we were yesterday. Better days have availed and despite derails, we’ve still

So I go to check Twitter and the

managed to stay on track and

same caption slithered its way on

intact; and to keep in contact with

all the posts.

one another.

I’m having flashbacks back to 2010

You sacrificed your lives so we

and 2013, then 2016 now 2019; what

could better love each other.

does this all mean!!!??



February 1st marks the beginning of Black History Month. Every year, black history, culture and contributions are celebrated all over the world. It’s important that it continues being celebrated because we need to know our past and where we come from. It’s a chance to honor those that paved the way for us, and to understand where we go in the future. Understanding our heritage is very important and not just for African-Americans but for everybody. It’s important to know how your ancestors lived, so not only can their legacy live on, but so the bad history won’t be repeated.

them for pushing through all of that so many of us could be standing here today. Many fought long and hard to be able to have some of the freedoms we have, so we should take out moments to reminisce and show our gratitude. Every one deserves to be honored for the sacrifice and suffering they endured for the sake of racial equality. Celebrating Black History Month allows us to pause and remember their stories, so we can commemorate their achievements. Without them, the world would not be what it is today.

In the history books, it’s mainly shown that AfricanAmericans were slaves and indentured servants, but it doesn’t show that before that, we were royalty. Coming from different areas, we ruled and did things our own way. Even when, we came to America, we built, grew and raised everything still. Apart from an awareness of the past, we can never appreciate the blessings we enjoy in the present. Knowing the strength and power we have is important for the black community, especially with everything going on today: mass shootings, police shootings and all of the racism. It seems everyday only the negative aspects of African-American culture and communities get highlighted. We hear about the poverty rates, incarceration rates, and high crime rates. Black History Month provides the chance to focus on different aspects of our narrative as AfricanAmericans. Black History Month allows us to seek out and lift up the best in African-American accomplishments. Celebrating Black History Month honors all of our ancestors. It shows that the bloodshed and pain they went through was not in vain. We appreciate




“Bringing the gifts that my ancestors gave, I am the dream and the hope of the slave. I rise. I rise. I rise.” - Maya Angelou



Every year in the United States during the month of February we celebrate “National Black History Month” as a way to educate people about the rich cultural heritage of African Americans and to instill pride in its citizens. This is a time to reflect on the past accomplishments of those who have gone on before us and to lay the groundwork for future aspirations. This is a chance to utilize education as a powerful tool to learn about our past history and to make Black History a serious study. It has been said that “In order to go forward, one must look back.” Maya Angelou emphasizes this by saying “For Africa to me is more than a glamorous fact. It is a historical truth; no man can know where he is going unless he knows exactly where he has been and exactly how he has arrived at his present place.” Educating ourselves on our rich legacy and past can only serve to make us proud of who we are. While Black History Month occurs once a year, there is so much more that we can do to foster a strong sense of pride in our race, including our children who represent our future. Positive identity and well being among our children for instance can be promoted by taking them to African American cultural exhibits, socializing our children about our African American heritage, teaching our children about our history, and discussing tolerance and respect for all. Inherent in learning about our heritage is the need to learn about other cultures as well given the multicultural society that we live in. Lynne Swann says it best: “This being Black History Month, I would like to ask people to celebrate the similarities and not focus on the difference between people of color and not of color.” The more that we are aware of our rich heritage and the diversity of others the more we can appreciate our legacy. As Rev. Jesse Jackson, Sr. so aptly observes; “Our nation is a rainbow – red, yellow, brown, black, and white – and we are all precious in God sight. In diversity, there is strength. As Maya Angelou so eloquently sums it up: “We all should know that diversity makes for a rich tapestry, and we must understand that all the threads are equal in value no matter what their color.”


Department of Psychology Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University







Barack Obama

Martin Luther King, jr

Harriet Tubman

Malcolm X

Frederick Douglass

Maya Angelou

Thurgood Marshall

W.E.B. Du Bois

Madam C.J. Walker

Reg inald Lewis

Dr. Mae Jemison

Matthew Henson


ARTS & HUMANITIES MAYA ANGELOU Dr. Maya Angelou was one of the most renowned and influential voices of our time. Hailed as a global renaissance woman, Dr. Angelou is a celebrated poet, memoirist, novelist, educator, dramatist, producer, actress, historian, filmmaker, and civil rights activist. As a teenager, Dr. Angelou’s love for the arts won her a scholarship to study dance and drama at San Francisco’s Labor School. At 14, she dropped out to become San Francisco’s first African-American female cable car conductor. She later finished high school, giving birth to her son, Guy, a few weeks after graduation. As a young single mother, she supported her son by working as a waitress and cook, however her passion for music, dance, performance, and poetry would soon take center stage. In 1954 and 1955, Dr. Angelou toured Europe with a production of the opera Porgy and Bess. She studied modern dance with Martha Graham, danced with Alvin Ailey on television variety shows and, in 1957, recorded her first album, Calypso Lady. In 1958, she moved to New York, where she joined the Harlem Writers Guild. In 1960, Dr. Angelou moved to Cairo, Egypt. The next year, she moved to Ghana. While in Ghana, she met with Malcolm X and, in 1964, returned to America to help him build his new Organization of African American Unity. Shortly after her arrival in the United States, Malcolm X was assassinated, and the organization dissolved. Soon after X’s assassination, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. asked Dr. Angelou to serve as Northern Coordinator for the Southern Christian Leadership Conference. King’s assassination, falling on her birthday in 1968, left her devastated. With the guidance of her friend, the novelist James Baldwin, she began work on the book that would become I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings. Published in 1970, I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings was published to international acclaim and enormous popular success. The list of her published verse, non-fiction, and fiction now includes more than 30 bestselling titles. Dr. Angelou has served on two presidential committees, was awarded the Presidential Medal of Arts in 2000, the Lincoln Medal in 2008, and has received 3 Grammy Awards. President Clinton requested that she compose a poem to read at his inauguration in 1993. Dr. Angelou’s reading of her poem “On the Pulse of the Morning” was broadcast live around the world. Dr. Angelou died on May 28, 2014. Source: http://www.biography.com/people/maya-angelou-9185388



ARTS & HUMANITIES TONI MORRISON Toni Morrison was a Nobel and Pulitzer Prize-winning American novelist. Her novels are known for their epic themes, exquisite language and richly detailed African American characters who are central to their narratives. Among her best-known novels are The Bluest Eye, Sula, Song of Solomon, Beloved, Jazz, Love and A Mercy. Living in an integrated neighborhood, Morrison did not become fully aware of racial divisions until she was in her teens. “When I was in first grade, nobody thought I was inferior. I was the only black in the class and the only child who could read,” she later told a reporter from The New York Times. At Howard University, Morrison continued to pursue her interest in literature. She majored in English and chose the classics for her minor. After graduating from Howard in 1953, Morrison continued her education at Cornell University. She completed her master’s degree in 1955. She then moved to the Lone Star State to teach at Texas Southern University. In 1957, Morrison returned to Howard University to teach English. Morrison joined a writers group that met on campus. She began working on her first novel with the group, which started out as a short story. Morrison decided to leave Howard in 1963. After spending the summer traveling with her family in Europe, she returned to the United States. The following year, she moved to Syracuse, New York, where she worked for a textbook publisher as a senior editor. Morrison later went to work for Random House, where she edited works by Toni Cade Bambara and Gayl Jones, renowned for their literary fiction, as well as luminaries like Angela Davis and Muhammad Ali. Morrison became a professor at Princeton University in 1989 and continued to produce great works, including Playing in the Dark: Whiteness and the Literary Imagination (1992). In recognition of her contributions to her field, she received the 1993 Nobel Prize in Literature, making her the first African American woman to be selected for the award. Morrison died on August 5, 2019. Source: biography.com/writer/toni-morrison






Bessie Coleman overcame discrimination because of her race and her sex to become the world’s first black woman to earn a pilot’s license. She applied to many flight schools across the country, but no school would take her because she was both African American and a woman. Famous African American newspaper publisher, Robert Abbott told her to move to France where she could learn how to fly. She began taking French classes at night because her application to flight schools needed to be written in French. So she learned French, withdrew her savings and went to Paris to learn to fly. She earned her license from France’s well known Caudron Brother’s School of Aviation. In June 1921 the Fédération Aéronautique Internationale awarded her an international pilot’s license. In 1922, hers was the first public flight by an African-American woman in America. Although she wanted to start a flying school for African Americans when she returned to the U.S., she specialized in stunt flying and parachuting, and earned a living barnstorming and performing aerial tricks. Tragically, on April 30, 1926, Coleman was killed in an accident during a rehearsal for an aerial show. She was only 33 years old. In 1931, the Challenger Pilots’ Association of Chicago started a tradition of flying over Coleman’s grave every year. By 1977, African American women pilots formed the Bessie Coleman Aviators Club. In 1995, the U. S. Postal Service issued the Bessie Coleman Commemorative Stamp to remember all of her accomplishments. Sources: womenshistory.org and biography.com



CENTRAL PARK FIVE / EXONERATED FIVE The teenagers, known as the Central Park 5 (Antron McCray, Kevin Richardson, Raymond Santana, Korey Wise, and Yusef Salaam), were exonerated by DNA evidence and a confession from the true perpetrator in 2002, 13 years after they were vilified by prosecutors and in the press after being charged and convicted of the rape of a white woman jogging in the park Photo: Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images



CIVIL RIGHTS ACTIVISTS DR. MARTIN LUTHER KING One of the world’s best known advocates of non-violent social change strategies, Martin Luther King, Jr., synthesized ideas drawn from many different cultural traditions. Morehouse College president Benjamin Mays and other proponents of Christian social activism influenced King’s decision after his junior year at Morehouse to become a minister and thereby serve society. Rejecting offers for academic positions, King decided while completing his Ph. D. requirements to return to the South and accepted the pastorate of Dexter Avenue Baptist Church in Montgomery, Alabama. On December 5, 1955, five days after Montgomery civil rights activist Rosa Parks refused to obey the city’s rules mandating segregation on buses, black residents launched a bus boycott and elected King as president of the newly-formed Montgomery Improvement Association. As the boycott continued during 1956, King gained national prominence as a result of his exceptional oratorical skills and personal courage. His house was bombed and he was convicted along with other boycott leaders on charges of conspiring to interfere with the bus company’s operations. Despite these attempts to suppress the movement, Montgomery bus were desegregated in December, 1956, after the United States Supreme Court declared Alabama’s segregation laws unconstitutional. Although increasingly portrayed as the preeminent black spokesperson, it was southern black college students who took the initiative, launching a wave of sit-in protests during the winter and spring of 1960, which resulted in the founding of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC). King soon became the target of criticisms from SNCC activists determined to assert their independence. King recognized the need to organize a successful protest campaign free of conflicts with SNCC. During the spring of 1963, he and his staff guided mass demonstrations in Birmingham, Alabama, where local white police officials were known for their anti-black attitudes. Clashes between black demonstrators and police using police dogs and fire hoses generated newspaper headlines through the world. Subsequent mass demonstrations in many communities culminated in a march on August 28, 1963, that attracted more than 250,000 protesters to Washington, D. C. Addressing the marchers from the steps of the Lincoln Memorial, King delivered his famous “I Have a Dream” oration. During the year following the March, King’s renown grew as he became Time magazine’s Man of the Year and, in December 1964, the recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize. He was assassinated on April 4, 1968, while seeking to assist a garbage workers’ strike in Memphis. Source: http://www.mlkonline.net/bio.html



MALCOLM X Malcolm X was born Malcolm Little on May 19, 1925 in Omaha, Nebraska. His father, Earl Little, was an outspoken Baptist minister whose civil rights activism prompted death threats from the white supremacist organization Black Legion, forcing the family to relocate twice before Malcolm’s fourth birthday. In 1929 their Lansing, Michigan home was burned to the ground. Two years later, Earl’s body was found lying across the town’s trolley tracks. Police ruled both incidents as accidents, but the Little’s were certain that members of the Black Legion were responsible. Louise suffered emotional breakdown several years after the death of her husband and was committed to a mental institution. Her children were split up amongst various foster homes and orphanages. Malcolm was a smart, focused student. He graduated from junior high at the top of his class. However, when a favorite teacher told Malcolm his dream of becoming a lawyer was “no realistic goal for a nigger,” Malcolm lost interest in school and dropped out. In 1946 he was arrested and convicted on burglary charges, and was sentenced to 10 years in prison. (He was paroled after serving seven years.) He used the time to further his education. Malcolm’s brother Reginald would visit and discuss his recent conversion to the Muslim religion. Intrigued, Malcolm began to study the teachings of Nation of Islam (NOI) leader Elijah Muhammad. By the time he was paroled in 1952, Malcolm was a devoted follower with the new surname “X.” (He considered “Little” a slave name and chose the “X” to signify his lost tribal name.) Malcolm was appointed as a minister and national spokesman for the Nation of Islam. Elijah Muhammad also charged him with establishing new mosques in cities such as Detroit, Michigan and Harlem, New York. Malcolm’s faith was dealt a crushing blow at the height of the civil rights movement in 1963. He learned that his mentor and leader, Elijah Muhammad, was secretly having relations with as many as six women within the Nation of Islam organization, and that some of these relationships had resulted in children. In March 1964 Malcolm terminated his relationship with the NOI. After Malcolm resigned his position in the Nation of Islam and renounced Elijah Muhammad, relations between the two had become increasingly volatile. On February 14, 1965 the home where Malcolm, his wife and their four daughters lived was firebombed. Luckily, the family escaped physical injury. One week later, however, Malcolm’s enemies rushed him onstage while he was at a speaking engagement and shot him 15 times at close range. The 39-year-old was pronounced dead on arrival at New York’s Columbia Presbyterian Hospital. Malcolm’s assassins, Talmadge Hayer, Norman 3X Butler and Thomas 15X Johnson were convicted of firstdegree murder in March 1966. The three men were all members of the Nation of Islam. Source: http://history1900s.about.com/od/people/a/Malcolm-X.htm



CIVIL RIGHTS ACTIVISTS THURGOOD MARSHALL Thurgood Marshall was an American lawyer who served as Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States from October 1967 until October 1991. Marshall was the Court’s first African American justice. One of his father’s favorite pastimes was to listen to cases at the local courthouse before returning home to rehash the lawyers’ arguments with his sons. Thurgood Marshall later recalled, “Now you want to know how I got involved in law? I don’t know. The nearest I can get is that my dad, my brother, and I had the most violent arguments you ever heard about anything. I guess we argued five out of seven nights at the dinner table.” After graduating from law school, Marshall briefly attempted to establish his own practice in Baltimore, but without experience he failed to land any significant cases. In 1934, he began working for the Baltimore branch of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People. Later in 1936, Marshall moved to New York City to work full time as legal counsel for the NAACP. Over the following decades, Marshall argued and won a variety of cases to strike down many forms of legalized racism, helping to inspire the American Civil Rights Movement. The greatest achievement of Marshall’s career as a civil-rights lawyer was his victory in the landmark 1954 Supreme Court case Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka. The class action lawsuit was filed on behalf of a group of black parents in Topeka, Kansas on behalf of their children forced to attend all-black segregated schools. Through Brown v. Board, one of the most important cases of the 20th century, Marshall challenged head-on the legal underpinning of racial segregation, the doctrine of “separate but equal” established by the 1896 Supreme Court case Plessy v. Ferguson. On May 17, 1954, the Supreme Court unanimously ruled that “separate educational facilities are inherently unequal,” and therefore racial segregation of public schools violated the equal protection clause of the 14th Amendment. In 1967, President Johnson nominated Marshall to serve on the United States Supreme Court, and on October 2, 1967, Thurgood Marshall was sworn in as a Supreme Court justice, becoming the first African American to serve on the nation’s highest court. Thurgood Marshall stands alongside Martin Luther King Jr. and Malcolm X as one of the greatest and most important figures of the American Civil Rights Movement. Thurgood Marshall died on January 24, 1993, at the age of 84. Source: http://www.biography.com/people/thurgood-marshall-9400241



ROSA PARKS Rosa Louise McCauley Parks was an American activist in the civil rights movement best known for her pivotal role in the Montgomery bus boycott. The United States Congress has called her “the first lady of civil rights” and “the mother of the freedom movement”. Her refusal to give up her seat to a white passenger on a segregated bus led to the Montgomery Bus Boycott. Her bravery led to nationwide efforts to end racial segregation. Parks was awarded the Martin Luther King Jr. Award by the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, the Presidential Medal of Freedom and the Congressional Gold Medal. In 1932, at age 19, Parks met and married Raymond Parks, a barber and an active member of the NAACP. After graduating high school with Raymond’s support, Parks became actively involved in civil rights issues by joining the Montgomery chapter of the NAACP in 1943, and serving as the chapter’s youth leader as well as secretary to NAACP President E.D. Nixon — a post she held until 1957. On December 1, 1955, Parks was arrested for refusing a bus driver’s instructions to give up her seat to a white passenger. She later recalled that her refusal wasn’t because she was physically tired, but that she was tired of giving in. The Montgomery City Code required that all public transportation be segregated and that bus drivers had the “powers of a police officer of the city while in actual charge of any bus for the purposes of carrying out the provisions” of the code. While operating a bus, drivers were required to provide separate but equal accommodations for white and black passengers by assigning seats. As the bus Parks was riding continued on its route, it began to fill with white passengers. Eventually, the bus was full and the driver noticed that several white passengers were standing in the aisle. The bus driver stopped the bus and moved the sign separating the two sections back one row, asking four black passengers to give up their seats. Members of the African American community were asked to stay off city buses on Monday, December 5, 1955 — the day of Parks’ trial — in protest of her arrest. People were encouraged to stay home from work or school, take a cab or walk to work. With most of the African American community not riding the bus, organizers believed a longer boycott might be successful. The Montgomery Bus Boycott, as it came to be known, was a huge success, lasting for 381 days and ending with a Supreme Court ruling declaring segregation on public transit systems to be unconstitutional. With the transit company and downtown businesses suffering financial loss and the legal system ruling against them, the city of Montgomery had no choice but to lift its enforcement of segregation on public buses, and the boycott officially ended on December 20, 1956. Source: https://www.biography.com/activist/rosa-parks



EDUCATORS MARY MCLEOD BETHUNE Mary McLeod Bethune founded the Daytona Normal and Industrial Institute for Negro Girls in Daytona, Florida in 1904. The school was combined with the Cookman Institute for Men in 1923. The merged institution became known as the BethuneCookman College. Bethune also became a Special Advisor to president Franklin D. Roosevelt. Source: biography.com

BOOKER T. WASHINGTON Booker T. Washington was an educator, author, orator, and advisor to multiple presidents of the United States. He began his career as an educator as a teacher at his old grade school in Malden, Virginia. He later became an instructor at Hampton University. He was Founder and first President of Tuskegee Normal and Industrial Institute (now known as Tuskegee University). Source: biography.com



ENTREPRENUERS MADAM C.J. WALKER Madam C. J. Walker created a hair care and cosmetics empire and was a selfmade millionaire. During the 1890s, she developed a scalp disorder that caused her to lose much of her hair, and she began to experiment with both home remedies and store-bought hair care treatments in an attempt to improve her condition. In 1907, Walker and her husband traveled around the South and Southeast promoting her products. in 1908 Walker opened a factory and a beauty school in Pittsburgh, and by 1910, when Walker transferred her business operations to Indianapolis, the Madame C.J. Walker Manufacturing Company had profits that were the modern-day equivalent of several million dollars. At the time of her death she was considered the wealthiest African American businesswoman and the wealthiest self-made woman in America. Source: biography.com

CHARLES CLINTON SPAULDING, AARON MCDUFFIE MOORE, AND JOHN MERRICK Charles Clinton Spaulding, Aaron McDuffie, and John Merrick cofounded the North Carolina Mutual Life Insurance Company in 1898, now the oldest and largest African American life insurance company in the United States. At the time, all three men were members of the Durham community: Spaulding, the general manager of a grocery company; Moore, a practicing physician; and Merrick, an entrepreneur with barbershops across Durham. At the time, Durham was referred to as “Black Wall Street”, notably for the economic successes blacks were seeing through business. The company still stands today – with assets estimated at $162 million. Source: tech.co/news/21-successful-blackentrepreneurs-throughout-history-2015-02



ENTREPRENUERS REGINALD F. LEWIS Reginald F. Lewis was a lawyer, entrepreneur, and philanthropist. In 1965, the Rockefeller Foundation funded a summer school program at Harvard Law School to introduce a select number of black students to legal studies. Reginald lobbied for his acceptance and got in. He made such an impression that Lewis was invited to attend Harvard Law School that fall; the only person in the 148year history of the school to be admitted before applying. During his third year at Harvard Law, Lewis discovered the direction his career would take as the result of a course on securities law. His senior year thesis on mergers and acquisitions received an honors grade. One of his professors, Frank Sander, said, “ Those of us on the faculty who saw in him then the promise of greatness had no idea of the extraordinary achievements be was to attain.” A desire to “do the deals myself” led Lewis to establish TLC Group, L.P. in 1983. His first successful venture was the $22.5- million dollar leveraged buyout of McCall Pattern Company. Fresh on the heels of the McCall deal, Lewis purchased the international division of Beatrice Foods (64 companies in 31 countries) and rebranded the company as TLC Beatrice International, Inc. At $985 million, the deal was the largest offshore leveraged buyout by an American company. With revenues of $1.5 billion the corporation made it to the Fortune 500 and was first on the Black Enterprise List of the Top 100 African American owned businesses. even after his death in 1993, Lewis’ philanthropic endeavors continue. Lewis’ biography “Why Should White Guys Have All the Fun?” was co-authored by former USA Today business writer Blair Walker and made the Best Seller list of Business Week when published in 1994.. Source: http://www.biography.com/people/reginald-f-lewis



ENTREPRENUERS BERRY GORDY JR. Berry Gordy Jr. is an entrepreneur, successful media executive and businessman, and the founder of Motown Records. He tried many careers—boxing, record store ownership, assembly line worker and a tour in the U. S. Army during the Korean War—until he found a niche in the world of entertainment. A gifted songwriter, Berry penned or co-wrote hits for Jackie Wilson, including “Reet Petite,” “Lonely Teardrops” and “To Be Loved.” Despite this success, Berry was not content to write songs: He burned with the entrepreneurial spirit. With an $800 loan from the Gordy Family’s Ber-Berry Co-op, Berry set out in 1959 to apply some of the principles he learned in the auto plant to the production of records and the creation of music groups and solo artists. In 1960 Motown released the song “Shop Around,” written by Smokey Robinson and performed by him and the Miracles. The song sold more than a million copies, and with that record Gordy’s company launched the most successful and influential era in the history of popular music. Motown Records made more than 110 number-one hit songs and countless top-ten records. The same vision that conceived of Motown Records led Berry Gordy, Jr., into the movie industry in the 1970s. Although he had moved into a different medium, Berry’s eye for talent was evident in the casting of Billy Dee Williams opposite Diana Ross in two films, Lady Sings the Blues and Mahogany. Hit movies followed his move to Los Angeles, with Motown artists, like Diana Ross and Michael Jackson starring in films Gordy produced, including the film adaptation of the Broadway musical, The Wiz. In June 1988 Gordy sold his company to MCA, Inc. He kept control of Jobete, the music publishing operation, and Motown’s film division, but he sold the record company for $61 million.. Sources: motownmuseum.org/story/berry-gordy/, and notablebiographies.com/Gi-He/Gordy-Jr-Berry.html



ENTREPRENUERS OPRAH WINFREY Oprah Winfrey is an entrepreneur, successful media executive, cable television network owner, television host, actress, producer and philanthropist. In 1976 while living in Baltimore, Maryland, she hosted the TV chat show People Are Talking. The show became a hit and Winfrey stayed with it for eight years, after which she was recruited by a Chicago TV station to host her own morning show, A.M. Chicago. Her major competitor in the time slot was Phil Donahue. Within several months, Winfrey’s open, warm-hearted personal style had won her 100,000 more viewers than Donahue and had taken her show from last place to first in the ratings. The show earned several Emmy Awards. Winfrey formed her own television production company, Harpo Productions, Inc., in 1986, and a film production company, Harpo Films, in 1990. Winfrey broke new ground in 1996 by starting an on-air book club. She announced selections two to four weeks in advance and then discussed the book on her show with a select group of people. In 1998 Winfrey expanded her media entertainment empire when she co-founded Oxygen Media, which launched a cable television network for women. She brokered a partnership with Discovery Communications in 2008, through which the Oprah Winfrey Network (OWN) replaced the Discovery Health Channel in January 2011. Winfrey engaged in numerous philanthropic activities, including the creation of Oprah’s Angel Network, which sponsors charitable initiatives worldwide. In 2007 she opened a $40 million school for disadvantaged girls in South Africa. According to Forbes magazine, Oprah was the richest African American of the 20th century and at the time was the world’s only Black billionaire for three years running. Life magazine hailed her as the most influential woman of her generation. Sources: biography.com/people/oprah-winfrey-9534419?page=1 and britannica.com/biography/Oprah-Winfrey



ENTREPRENUERS JOHN H. JOHNSON John H. Johnson is widely regarded as the most influential African American publisher in American history. After graduating from high school, Johnson went to work for the Supreme Life Insurance Company while attending the University of Chicago. While with Supreme, he was given the job of compiling weekly news clippings for his boss, which eventually gave him the idea for his first publication, Negro Digest. In 1942, after graduating from the University of Chicago, he acted on this idea, and with a $500 loan against his mother’s furniture and $6,000 raised through charter subscriptions, Johnson launched Negro Digest, which later became Black World. Three years later, he launched Ebony, and in 1951, Johnson Publishing expanded again, with the creation of Jet, the world’s largest African American news weekly magazine. Johnson also expanded from magazine publishing into book publishing, and owned Fashion Fair Cosmetics, the largest black-owned cosmetics company in the world, Supreme Beauty Products, and produced television specials. Johnson also later became chairman and CEO of Supreme Life Insurance, where he had begun his career. In addition to his business and publishing acumen, Johnson was highly involved at both community and the national level. President John F. Kennedy sent Johnson to the Ivory Coast in 1961 as Special Ambassador to the independence ceremonies taking place there, and President Johnson sent him to Kenya in 1963 for the same purpose. After 71 years, in June 2016, Johnson Publishing sold both Jet and Ebony to private equity firm Clear View Group. The new publisher is known as Ebony Media Corporation, but retained its Fashion Fair Cosmetics business and its historic Ebony and Jet photo archives. In July 2019, three months after Johnson Publishing filed for Chapter 7 Bankruptcy liquidation, it sold its historic Ebony and Jet photo archives (prints and negatives) to a consortium of foundations to be made available to the public. Johnson passed away on August 8, 2005 at the age of 87. Sources: thehistorymakers.org/biography/john-h-johnson-40, and en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ebony_(magazine)



ENTREPRENUERS EARL G. GRAVES, SR Earl G. Graves, Sr. is an entrepreneur, publisher, businessman, philanthropist, and advocate for African American business. He is the founder of Black Enterprise magazine, a business-service publication targeted to black professionals, executives, entrepreneurs, and policy makers. He is also Chairman of Earl G. Graves, Ltd. media company. In 1972, he was named one of the 10 most outstanding minority businessmen in the country by the president of the United States and received the National Award of Excellence in recognition of his achievements in minority business enterprise. He is also listed in Who’s Who in America and was named one of 200 future leaders of the country by Time magazine in 1974. Earl G. Graves Sr. was previously chairman and CEO of Pepsi-Cola of Washington, D.C., L.P., the largest minority-controlled Pepsi-Cola franchise in the United States. Graves was also an administrative assistant to the late Senator Robert F. Kennedy from 1965 to 1968. After Senator Kennedy’s assassination, Graves formed his own management consulting firm to advise corporations on urban affairs and economic development. His firm’s clients included major multinational companies. In 2002, Fortune magazine named Graves one of the 50 most powerful and influential African Americans in corporate America. In 2007, Graves was inducted into the U.S. Business Hall of Fame, which recognizes the contributions of the nation’s most distinguished corporate professionals who have enriched the economy and inspired young people to pursue excellence in business and in life. During the span of his business and professional career, Graves has received numerous awards and honors for his outstanding business leadership and community service. Source: blackenterprise.com/management/earl-g-graves-sr/



ENTREPRENUERS CATHY HUGHES Cathy Hughes is a dynamic media pioneer who is the Founder and Chairperson of Urban One, Inc.(formerly known as Radio One), the largest African-American owned and operated, broadcast company in the nation. Hughes began her radio career in her hometown of Omaha, Nebraska, at KOWH (AM), a station owned by a group of African-American professionals. In 1971, she moved to Washington, D.C., and became a lecturer in the newly established School of Communications at Howard University. During her tenure, she served as General Sales Manager at WHUR, Howard University Radio, increasing the station’s revenue from $250,000 to $3 million in her first year. She also became the first woman Vice President and General Manager of a station in the nation’s capital and created the format known as the “Quiet Storm,” which revolutionized urban radio and was aired on over 480 stations nationwide. In 1980, Hughes purchased her flagship station WOL-AM, in Washington D.C., and pioneered yet another innovative format – “24-Hour Talk from a Black Perspective.” With the theme, “Information is Power,” she served as the station’s morning show host for 11 years. In 1999, Cathy Hughes became the first African-American woman to chair a publicly held corporation, following the sale of more than seven million shares of common stock to the public. Along with her son and business partner Alfred Liggins, III, she grew what was then Radio One into a multi-media company that became an urban radio market leader with more than 60 stations across the country. It became the first African-American company in radio history to dominate several major markets simultaneously, and Hughes became the first woman to own a radio station that was ranked number one in a major market. Radio One also diversified and launched the television network TV One in 2004 and entered the digital space with Interactive One, now iOne Digital, in 2007. In May 2017, Radio One’s name was changed to Urban One, to reflect the market it serves. Urban One, Inc. is now the parent corporation of several subsidiaries: TV One, the largest AfricanAmerican owned, cable television network in the country; Reach Media, which presents syndicated radio programs like the Rickey Smiley Morning Show and the Tom Joyner Morning Show; iOne Digital, home of several popular websites including Hello Beautiful and Cassius; and One Solution, a marketing firm that allows advertisers to take advantage of all of the assets under the Urban One brand. Source: http://cathyhughes.com/about/



ENTREPRENUERS ROBERT LOUIS JOHNSON Robert Louis Johnson is an African American entrepreneur, media magnate, executive, philanthropist, and investor. Out of the 2,043 people who appeared on the 2017 Forbes list of billionaires, only three were African-American: Oprah Winfrey, Robert Smith and Michael Jordan. But before any of them appeared on the list, Robert L. Johnson, 75, became the first African-American billionaire in 2001. Johnson created Black Entertainment Television (BET), a prominent cable station targeted toward an African-American audience, in 1980. In 1991, BET became the first black-owned company to be traded on the New York Stock Exchange, according to CNN Money. In 2001, Johnson became a billionaire after selling the station to Viacom for $3 billion, which catapulted his net worth to an estimated $1.3 billion. While Johnson is no longer a billionaire, according to Forbes’ estimates, he made history as the first African-American to join the exclusive billionaire’s club. Johnson became the first black majority owner of an NBA team with the purchase of the Charlotte Bobcats. In 2010, he sold his majority stake to Michael Jordan in a $275 million bid. Today, Johnson is the owner and chairman of asset management firm RLJ companies which he founded in 2004. The RLJ Companies is a holding company with a diverse portfolio including hotel real estate investment, private equity, financial services, asset management, automobile dealerships, sports and entertainment, and Video lottery terminal gaming. In 2016, Johnson finalized a partnership agreement with AMC Networks through his RLJ Company after launching his own video on demand streaming service, Urban Movie Channel (UMC) in 2014. According to the agreement, AMC will use its programming and distribution clout to benefit Acorn TV and UMC. Sources: cnbc.com/2018/02/26/what-to-know-about-robertjohnsonamericas-first-black-billionaire.html and en.wikipedia.org/ wiki/Robert_L._Johnson



ENTREPRENUERS DAVID L. STEWARD David L. Steward is an African American billionaire businessman. He is chairman and founder of World Wide Technology, Inc., one of the largest African-Americanowned businesses in America. After graduating from Central Missouri State University in 1973, Steward faced a new set of challenges. The country was in the midst of a huge recession and his family could not help him financially. Steward approached a local banker and managed to borrow $300. With all of his possessions in a knapsack, Steward hitchhiked to St. Louis and moved in with his sister. Steward joined Wagner Electric in 1974 but was laid off in 1975. In 1976 Steward accepted a marketing and sales position with the Missouri Pacific Railroad Company. It was the first time that the Railroad had employed a person of color to sell rail services and Steward stayed with the company until 1979 when he joined Federal Express. Dave served as a senior account executive for Fed Ex, where he was recognized as salesman of the year and was inducted into the company’s sales hall of fame in 1981. In 1984, he borrowed $2,000 from his father for a period of just three weeks, found the right target company and leveraged his railroad experience to purchase and launch Transportation Business Specialists, which audited and reviewed freight bill and overcharges for the railroad industry. In 1987, Transport Administrative Services was hired by Union Pacific Railroad to audit three years’ worth of freight bills for undercharges, which meant managing $15 billion of rate information for a single client. Steward’s company built a local area network to handle the data and completed the audit 40 times faster using new technology to revolutionize railroad audits. He quickly recognized he was not in the business of auditing freight bills… he was in the business of using technology in a new, innovative way and wanted to be a part of the technological revolution, changing the way people were doing business. In 1990, Steward founded World Wide Technology, Inc. Over the past two decades, Steward and his executive team have built what started as a small logistics/ transportation audit company into a leading systems integrator and supply chain solutions provider with over 4,000 employees in offices throughout the world. Steward is one of five black billionaires in America, being 745th in the Forbes Billionaires 2019 list. Source: wwt.com/profile/dave-steward



EXPLORERS MATTHEW HENSON American explorer Matthew Henson was 4 years old, when his father moved the family to Washington, D.C. in search for work opportunities. His father died there, leaving Henson and his siblings in the care of relatives. At age 12, he left to work as a cabin boy on a ship. Over the next six years and under the mentorship of Captain Childs, Henson learned literacy and navigation skills. After Captain Childs died, Henson met Robert E. Peary, an explorer and officer in the U.S. Navy Corps of Civil Engineers. On the recommendation of the store owner, Peary hired Henson as his valet for his travel expeditions. Peary and Henson would make multiple attempts to reach the North Pole. The team’s final attempt to reach the North Pole took place in 1908. On April 6, 1909, Peary, Henson, four Eskimos and 40 dogs finally reached the North Pole. In 1937, a 70-year-old Henson finally received the acknowledgements he deserved: The highly regarded Explorers Club in New York accepted him as an honorary member, and the U.S. Navy awarded him a medal in 1946. He also received a cherished gold medal from the Chicago Geographic Society. Source: biography.com/explorer/matthew-henson



EXPLORERS JEAN BAPTISTE POINT DU SABLE Jean Baptiste Point Du Sable is regarded as the first permanent resident of Chicago, Illinois. He has become known as the “Founder of Chicago.� His foresight in perceiving the importance of the site of Chicago, now one of the largest cities in the United States, was matched by his uncommon affinity with the local Native American tribes. Together, these factors led this visionary entrepreneur to establish the most important center of commerce, trade, and industry in the central United States. On the site of the current Tribune Tower in downtown Chicago, he established the first permanent home in the region. He added a trading post, a bake house, a smokehouse, a dairy, a mill, a horse stable, and a barn, in addition to miscellaneous out-buildings. This complex became the main trade and supply depot for trappers, woodsmen, pioneers, traders, and Native Americans. On October 25, 1968, Du Sable was officially recognized as the founder of Chicago by the city and the state of Illinois. Source: blackhistorynow.com/jean-baptiste-pointe-du-sable/



FREEDOM FIGHTERS HARRIET TUBMAN Harriet Tubman was an abolitionist and political activist. Born into slavery, Tubman escaped and subsequently made some 13 missions to rescue approximately 70 enslaved people, including family and friends, using the network of antislavery activists and safe houses known as the Underground Railroad. She earned the nickname “Moses� for her leadership. With the passage of the Fugitive Slave Law which stated that escaped slaves could be captured in the North and returned to slavery, Tubman re-routed the Underground Railroad to Canada. A survey at the end of the 20th century named her as one of the most famous civilians in American history before the Civil War, third only to Betsy Ross and Paul Revere. Source: biography.com

NAT TURNER Nat Turner was born into slavery but unlike most enslaved African Americans, Nat was able to attain the skills of reading and writing. Nat later became a preacher and revolutionary leader of other enslaved African Americans. He led a fourday rebellion of both enslaved and free black people in Southampton County, Virginia, beginning August 21, 1831. The rebellion caused the death of approximately 60 white men, women, and children. He was eventually caught and Turner pled not guilty during his trial, believing that his rebellion was the work of God. He was sentenced to death by hanging. Source: biography.com



FREDERICK DOUGLASS Frederick Douglass was an outspoken and eloquent speaker against slavery, and was a supporter of women’s rights. Frederick Douglass tried to escape from slavery twice before he succeeded. Eventually Douglass was asked to tell his story at abolitionist meetings, after which he became a regular anti-slavery lecturer. In addition to the abolition, Douglass became an outspoken supporter of women’s rights. In 1848, he was the only African American to attend the first women’s rights convention at Seneca Falls, New York. Elizabeth Cady Stanton asked the assembly to pass a resolution stating the goal of women’s suffrage. Many attendees opposed the idea. Douglass stood and spoke eloquently in favor, arguing that he could not accept the right to vote as a black man if women could not also claim that right. The resolution passed. By the time of the Civil War he was one of the most famous black men in the country. He conferred with President Lincoln on the treatment of black soldiers, and with President Andrew Jackson on the subject of black’s having the right to vote. In 1872 he became the first African American nominated to be vice president of the United States on the Equal Rights Party ticket. Nominated without his knowledge or consent, Douglass never campaigned. Source: biography.com/people/frederick-douglass-9278324

W.E.B. DU BOIS W.E.B. DuBois was co-founder of the N.A.A.C.P. He was also an author and outspoken social justice advocate. While growing up in a mostly European American town, he identified himself as “mulatto,” but freely attended school with whites and was enthusiastically supported in his academic studies by his white teachers. In 1885, he moved to Nashville, Tennessee, to attend Fisk University. It was there that he first encountered Jim Crow laws. For the first time, he began analyzing the deep troubles of American racism. After earning his bachelor’s degree at Fisk, Du Bois entered Harvard University. In 1895, he became the first African American to earn a doctorate from Harvard University. A year later (1896), Du Bois published his landmark study, The Philadelphia Negro, marking the beginning of his expansive writing career. In the study, he coined the phrase “the talented tenth,” a term that described the likelihood of one in 10 black men becoming leaders of their race. While working as a professor at Atlanta University, Du Bois rose to national prominence when he very publicly opposed Booker T. Washington’s “Atlanta Compromise,” an agreement that asserted that vocational education for blacks was more valuable to them than social advantages like higher education or political office. In 1903 he published his seminal work, “The Soul of Black Folks.” He was a proponent of Pan Africanism. Source: biography.com/people/web-du-bois-9279924



INVENTORS BRADLEY BENJAMIN Bradley Benjamin was born a slave in 1830. He showed a talent for invention and was referred by his master to the U.S. Naval Academy as an assistant in their science department. It was here that he invented the first steam engine for a ship. Since he was a slave, he was not allowed to patent his invention, however, he did sell the rights to it and bought his freedom. Source: interestingengineering.com/the-a-z-list-of-black-inventors

ELIJAH MCCOY Elijah McCoy was a master mechanic and engineer. In an effort to improve efficiency and eliminate the frequent stopping necessary for lubrication of the train, McCoy set out to create a method of automating the task. In 1872 he invented the “lubricating cup,” an automatic lubricating device for locomotive steam engines. McCoy later invented the “graphite lubricator” for superheater trains. Other inventors attempted to sell their own versions of the device but most companies wanted the authentic device, requesting “the Real McCoy,” which is where this term originated. Owner of 57 U.S. Patents. Source: blackinventor.com/pages/elijah-mccoy.html



INVENTORS GARRETT MORGAN Invented the traffic light and the forerunner of the gas Mask. Developed first human hair straightener. On July 24, 1916 when an explosion occurred in a tunnel being dug under Lake Erie by the Cleveland Water Works, the tunnel quickly filled with smoke, dust and poisonous gases and trapped 32 workers underground. Garrett and his brother Frank quickly arrived at the scene, put on the Safety Hood and entered the tunnel. After Morgan saved many of the workers trapped in the tunnel using his gas mask, orders came in from fire and police departments across the country for the device. However many orders were canceled when it was discovered that Morgan was black. Morgan never forgot that his fellow Blacks still suffered injustices and difficulties, to address these as he started a newspaper called the Cleveland Call (later renamed as the Call & Post.) Source: blackinventor.com/pages/garrett-morgan.html

GRANVILLE WOODS Granville Woods Known as the black Thomas Edison, Woods manufactured and sold telephone, telegraph and electrical equipment. Invented the telegraphony device; allowed transmission of voice and telegraph messages over single line. Also invented Synchronous Multiplex Railway Telegraph and was the owner of more than 50 patents. Source: biography.com



MEDICAL PIONEERS DANIEL HALE WILLIAMS Daniel Hale Williams was an African American general surgeon, who in 1893 performed the first documented, successful pericardium surgery (open heart surgery) in the United States, without the benefits of a blood transfusion or modern surgical procedures. Due to the discrimination of the day, African American citizens were still barred from being admitted to hospitals and black doctors were refused staff positions. So, in 1891 Dr. Williams founded a hospital with an interracial staff. In 1895, he co-founded the National Medical Association, a professional organization for black medical practitioners, as an alternative to the American Medical Association, which didn’t allow African American membership. Source: biography.com/people/daniel-hale-williams-9532269t

CHARLES DREW Charles Drew was an African American surgeon and medical researcher. He researched in the field of blood transfusions. He developed a method of processing and store blood plasma in blood banks. He organized the first large-scale blood bank in the U.S. He managed two of the largest blood banks, for the United States and Great Britain, during World War II. He was Chief Surgeon at Freedman’s Hospital and was a professor at Howard University. He resigned after a ruling that the blood of African-Americans would be segregated. Source: biography.com/people/charles-drew-9279094?page=1



SCIENTISTS GEORGE WASHINGTON CARVER George Washington Carver was an agricultural scientist and inventor. He was the first black student at Iowa State. After graduating he became a teacher and research scientist. He was hired in 1896 by Booker T. Washington to run the agricultural department at Tuskegee Institute. He discovered over 300 uses for the peanut. He actively promoted alternative crops to cotton and methods to prevent soil depletion. He was the most prominent black scientist of the early 20th century. Source: biography.com/scientist/george-washington-carver

BENJAMIN BANNEKER Benjamin Banneker was a free African-American almanac author, surveyor, astronomer, and inventor. Banneker had little formal education and was largely self-taught. He was approached in February 1791 by his friend Andrew Ellicott to survey the land staked out for the new United States capital. When L’Enfant, the civil engineer commissioned to design the capitol left the project, he took all the designs with him, leaving the project in disarray. According to writer Gaius Chamberlain, “Banneker surprised them when he asserted that he could reproduce the plans from memory and in two days did exactly as he had promised.” Source: biography.com/people/benjamin-banneker-9198038




COLIN KAEPERNICK Colin Kaepernick is a professional NFL Super Bowl quarterback who fights oppression globally. Originally fully funded by Kaepernick, he founded the global Know Your Rights Camps to advance the liberation of Black and Brown people through education, self-empowerment, mass-mobilization and the creation of new systems that elevate the next generation of change leaders. In 2018, he completed his Million Dollar Pledge, where he personally donated one million dollars to thirty-seven different organizations fighting for justice. He also rallied the support of many friends including Alicia Keys, J. Cole, Kobe Bryant, Serena Williams, Steph Curry, Zendaya and more, who matched his donations to raise an additional $400,000+ for these organizations to continue their work on the ground in the communities. He has done previous work with Camp Taylor, an organization helping children with congenital heart defects after being adopted by parents who lost two children due to heart defects. Kaepernick has received the Sports Illustrated Muhammad Ali Legacy Award, ACLU’s Eason Monroe Courageous Advocate Award, The Puffin/Nation Prize for Creative Citizenship, Amnesty International’s Ambassador of Conscience Award, The W.E.B. Du Bois Medal from Harvard University’s Hutchins Center and was awarded the Len Eshmont by his NFL teammates, which is considered the most prestigious honor the players vote on.. Source: hhttps://kaepernick7.com/pages/mission



POLITICAL TRAILBLAZERS BARACK OBAMA Barack Hussein Obama was elected the 44th President of the United States on November 4, 2008, and sworn in on January 20, 2009. He is the first African American to hold the office of President of the United States. With a father from Kenya and a mother from Kansas, President Obama was born in Hawaii on August 4, 1961. After working his way through college with the help of scholarships and student loans, President Obama moved to Chicago, where he worked with a group of churches to help rebuild communities devastated by the closure of local steel plants. He attended Harvard Law School, where he became the first African-American president of the Harvard Law Review. President Obama’s years of public service are based around his unwavering belief in the ability to unite people around a politics of purpose. In the Illinois State Senate, he passed the first major ethics reform in 25 years, cut taxes for working families, and expanded health care for children and their parents. As a United States Senator, he reached across the aisle to pass groundbreaking lobbying reform, lock up the world’s most dangerous weapons, and bring transparency to government by putting federal spending online. President Obama was named the 2009 Nobel Peace Prize laureate. He was re-elected president in November 2012. Source: http://www.whitehouse.gov/administration/president-obama



POLITICAL TRAILBLAZERS BARBARA JORDAN Barbara Jordan was a groundbreaking African American politician who grew up in a poor black neighborhood in Houston, Texas. After graduating from Texas Southern University in 1956, Jordan continued her studies at Boston University Law School. She was one of the few black students in the program. Jordan returned to Texas after earning her degree and set up her law practice. Before long, Jordan became active in politics, and in 1962, Jordan launched her first bid for public office, seeking a spot in the Texas legislature. It took two more tries for her to make history. In 1966, Jordan finally won a seat in the Texas legislature, becoming the first black woman to do so. Advancing in her career, Jordan won election to the U.S. House of Representatives in 1972. As a member of the House Judiciary Committee, she was thrust into the national spotlight during the Watergate scandal. Jordan stood as a moral compass during this time of crisis, calling for the impeachment of President Richard M. Nixon for his involvement in this illegal political enterprise. At the 1976 Democratic National Convention, Jordan once again captured the public’s attention with her keynote address. She told the crowd, “My presence here . . . is one additional bit of evidence that the American dream need not forever be deferred.” Announcing that she wouldn’t seek reelection, Jordan finished up her final term in 1979. Some thought that she might have gone farther in her political career, but it was later revealed that Jordan had been diagnosed with multiple sclerosis around this time. In 1994, President Bill Clinton appointed Jordan to head up the Commission on Immigration Reform. He also honored her with the Presidential Medal of Freedom that same year. She passed away two years later, on January 17, 1996, in Austin, Texas. Jordan died of pneumonia, a complication of her battle with leukemia. Sources: biography.com/people/barbara-jordan-9357991



POLITICAL TRAILBLAZERS COLIN LUTHER POWELL Colin Luther Powell is an American politician and retired four-star general in the United States Army. It was at City College of New York, where Powell studied geology, that he found his calling-in the Reserve Officers’ Training Corps (ROTC). He soon became commander of his unit. This experience set him on a military career and gave him structure and direction in his life. After graduation in 1958, Powell was commissioned as a second lieutenant in the U.S. Army. His long and distinguished career includes service during the Vietnam War, in Korea, and also includes numerous promotions and commendations. In 1987, Powell became national security adviser, a post he held for the duration of the Reagan administration. In 1989, President George H. W. Bush appointed General Colin Powell as Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. The post is the highest military position in the Department of Defense, and Powell was the first African-American officer to receive that distinction. In 2000, President George W. Bush appointed Colin Powell secretary of state, and Powell was unanimously confirmed by the U.S. Senate. At that time, this was the highest rank in civilian government ever held by an African-American. During his tenure, Powell came under fire for his role in building the case for the 2003 invasion of Iraq. Initially, Powell had serious misgivings about President Bush’s plan to invade Iraq and overthrow Saddam Hussein. Bush decided to go to war and, in a crucial moment, Powell agreed to support the president. To advance the case for war with the international community, Powell appeared before the U.N. Security Council in February 2003 to present evidence that Iraq had concealed an ongoing weapons development program. Powell’s reputation for integrity helped convince many in Congress and the country that Iraq posed an imminent threat. In September 2004, he testified before Congress that the intelligence sources he used in his February presentation to the United Nations were “wrong” and it was unlikely that Saddam had any stockpiles of weapons of mass destruction. In 2004, after acknowledging it was unlikely that Iraq possessed stockpiles of weapons of mass destruction, Powell announced his resignation as secretary of state. In October 2008, Colin Powell made headlines again when he announced his endorsement of Barack Obama for president. Colin Powell has spent much of his life inspiring many with his leadership skills and life experiences. Along with his wife, Powell began America’s Promise Alliance, as part of their dedication to the wellbeing of children and youth of all socioeconomic levels and their commitment to seeing that young people receive the resources necessary to succeed. Source: biography.com/people/colin-powell-9445708



POLITICAL TRAILBLAZERS CONDOLEEZZA RICE Condoleezza Rice is an American political scientist, diplomat, civil servant, and professor. She served as the 66th United States Secretary of State. In 1993, Rice became the first woman and first African American to serve as provost of Stanford University, a post she held for six years. During that time, she also served as the university’s chief budget and academic officer. In 200, Rice was appointed national security adviser by President George W. Bush, becoming the first black woman (and second woman) to hold the post. She went on to become the first black woman to serve as U.S. Secretary of State in 2004, following Colin Powell’s resignation, and served from January 2005 to 2009. As Secretary of State, Rice dedicated her department to “Transformational Diplomacy,” with a mission of building and sustaining democratic, well-governed states around the world and the Middle East in particular. To that end, she relocated American diplomats to such hardship locations as Iraq, Afghanistan and Angola, and required them to become fluent in two foreign languages. She also created a high-level position to de-fragment U.S. foreign aid. In March 2009, Rice returned to Stanford University as a political science professor and the Thomas and Barbara Stephenson Senior Fellow on Public Policy at the Hoover Institution. In September 2010, she became a faculty member of the Stanford Graduate School of Business and a director of its Global Center for Business and the Economy. She is currently the Denning Professor in Global Business and the Economy. Rice speaks five languages fluently, she is an accomplished concert pianist, has a reputation as a shopaholic and reportedly loves expensive designer clothes by Armani and Oscar de la Renta. Sources: biography.com/people/condoleezza-rice-9456857?page=1 and gsb.stanford.edu/faculty-research/faculty/condoleezza-rice


POLITICAL TRAILBLAZERS HAROLD WASHINGTON Harold Washington was an African American politician who gained national prominence as the first African American mayor of Chicago. He served in the Illinois House of Representatives, the Illinois State Senate, and the U.S. House of Representatives. During his second term in Congress, Washington was persuaded by black leaders to enter the 1983 mayoral race in Chicago. Campaigning for reform and an end to city patronage, he won the Democratic nomination by upsetting incumbent Mayor Jane Byrne and Richard M. Daley, the son of four-term mayor Richard J. Daley. In the general election, Washington narrowly defeated Bernard Epton, a virtually unknown white Republican, in a record voter turnout tinged with racial overtones. Washington was often unable to implement his programs during his first term in office because the opposition in City Council controlled a majority of the 50 council seats. Washington ruled by veto. After a court ruled that several ward boundaries violated the law by disfranchising minority voters, new elections in those wards finally gave him control of the council in 1986. The following year he was easily reelected to a second term even though he had pushed through an unpopular $70 million property tax increase. By the final months of 1987, Mayor Harold Washington was finally having things his own way. Elected to a second term earlier in the year, Washington had a majority of the city’s 50 aldermen working with him. During his time as mayor, Washington had chipped away at the Democratic machine’s patronage system by appointing professionals, minorities and women to city positions. He had worked for economic development in neighborhoods rather than just downtown. Sitting in his fifth-floor office in City Hall one morning, talking to a press aide, he suddenly slumped over, his face resting on the desktop. He had suffered a heart attack and died in office. britannica.com/biography/Harold-Washington and en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Harold_Washington

From left, Kaliegh Garris, Miss Teen USA; Nia Franklin, Miss America; Cheslie Kryst, Miss USA; Zozibini Tunzi, Miss Universe; and Toni-Ann Singh, Miss World.Credit...Paras Griffin/Getty Images; Steven Ferdman/Getty Images; Stephen R. Sylvanie/ USA Today Sports, via Reuters; Paras Griffin/Getty Images; Daniel Leal-Olivas/Agence France-Presse — Getty Images

In 2019, For the First Time, Black Women Have Simultaneously Held Titles of Five of the World’s Top Beauty Pageants


WAR HERO DORIS “DORIE” MILLER During a short-lived but distinguished Navy career, Doris “Dorie” Miller, with limited training and on his own volition, fought at Pearl Harbor against attacking Japanese planes with anti-aircraft guns to defend his ship and his country. Miller did his basic training at the Naval Training Station in Norfolk, Virginia, and reported to his first duty station in November 1939. He served as a mess attendant, for the most part waiting on tables in the dining facilities of the ammunition ship USS Pyro. Soon after, he transferred to the battleship USS West Virginia. There, he also became the West Virginia’s heavyweight boxing champion. A two-month temporary tour of duty in June and July of 1940 took Miller to the Secondary Battery Gunnery School aboard the USS Nevada, after which he returned to the West Virginia in August 1940. On December 7, 1941, Miller was serving aboard the West Virginia, anchored in Pearl Harbor, Hawaii. The Japanese attacked the U.S. fleet that day. Within minutes the entire U.S. fleet was engulfed in a massive offensive by Japanese torpedo planes, bombers, and kamikaze fighters. B efore trained gunners could arrive, Miller manned one of the 50-caliber Browning anti-aircraft machine guns on deck. Despite his lack of training, he drew on his early experience shooting rifles on the family farm, and by his own account, it came naturally: “It wasn’t hard. I just pulled the trigger and she worked fine.” Witnesses say his marksmanship was outstanding. He is generally credited with shooting down three Japanese planes, and some accounts estimate as many as six. He died two years later aboard the USS Liscome Bay when the ship was hit by a torpedo and sank off Butaritari atoll, according to the Navy. For his courage during the attack on Pearl Harbor in 1941, Miller became the first African American to receive the Navy Cross. Along with the Navy Cross, Miller was awarded the Purple Heart; the American Defense Service Medal, Fleet Clasp; the Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal; and the World War II Victory Medal. On Jan. 20, 2020 —the holiday marking the birthday of the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.— the U.S. Navy officially named its newest aircraft carrier, the future USS Doris Miller. USS Doris Miller will be the first aircraft carrier named for an enlisted Sailor and the first named for an African American. Source: http://blackhistorynow.com/doris-miller/



DEPUTY U.S. MARSHAL BASS REEVES During the late 19th Century no area in the United States was a haven and a refuge for criminals like the Indian Territory, pre–statehood Oklahoma. In 1875, Judge Isaac C. Parker, was given the task of cleaning up the territory by President Ulysses Grant. One of the first of the deputies hired by Judge Parker’s court was a former slave from Texas (born in Arkansas) named Bass Reeves. Reeves was an imposing figure said to have superhuman strength, and at 6’2, 180 lbs. he made even the most violent outlaws think twice before they resisted arrest. This, along with the fact that he was a skilled, ambidextrous gunslinger, could account for Reeves’ extraordinary ability to round up and bring in multiple prisoners at once. He was known to work in disguise in order to get information and affect the arrest of fugitives he wanted to capture. Being a former slave, Reeves was illiterate. He would memorize his warrants and writs. In those thirty–two years it is said he never arrested the wrong person due to the fact he couldn’t read. Bass Reeves escaped numerous assassination attempts on his life, he was the most feared deputy U.S. marshal to work the Indian Territory. He brought in outlaws by the dozens from all over Indian Territory. Belle Star, infamous bandit, bootlegger and horse thief, is said to have turned herself in when she found out Reeves had the warrant for her arrest. On one occasion he herded nineteen horse thieves to the federal jail in Fort Smith, Arkansas, by himself. During his long career, he was credited with arresting more than 3,000 felons. Historian Art Burton postulated the theory that Bass Reeves may have served as inspiration for the character of the Lone Ranger.. Source: http://www.nps.gov/fosm/learn/historyculture/bass_reeves.htm



SPACE EXPLORERS MAE CAROL JEMISON, PH.D. Mae Carol Jemison is an American engineer, physician, and former NASA astronaut. She became the first black woman to travel into space when she served as a mission specialist aboard the Space Shuttle Endeavour. During her time at Morgan Park High School in Chicago, Illinois, she became convinced she wanted to pursue a career in biomedical engineering, and when she graduated in 1973 as a consistent honor student, she entered Stanford University on a National Achievement Scholarship. At Stanford, Jemison received a B.S. in chemical engineering in 1977. Upon graduation, she entered Cornell University Medical College to work toward a medical degree. When she obtained her M.D. in 1981, she interned at Los Angeles County/University of Southern California Medical Center and later worked as a general practitioner. For the next two and a half years, she was the area Peace Corps medical officer for Sierra Leone and Liberia where she also taught and did medical research. Following her return to the United States in 1985, she made a career change and decided to follow a dream she had nurtured for a long time. In October of that year she applied for admission to NASA’s astronaut training program. When Jemison was chosen on June 4, 1987, she became the first African American woman ever admitted into the astronaut training program. On September 12, 1992, Jemison finally flew into space with six other astronauts aboard the Endeavour on mission STS47. During her eight days in space, she conducted experiments on weightlessness and motion sickness on the crew and herself. Altogether, she spent slightly over 190 hours in space before returning to Earth on September 20. Source: biography.com/people/mae-c-jemison-9542378?page=1



SPACE EXPLORERS GUION STEWART BLUFORD JR., PH.D. Guion Stewart Bluford Jr., Ph.D., is an American aerospace engineer, retired U.S. Air Force officer and fighter pilot, and former NASA astronaut, who is the first African American and the second person of African descent to go to space. A distinguished U.S. Air Force Reserve Officers’ Training Corps member in college, he joined the U.S. Air Force and served in the Vietnam War. Flying more than 140 combat missions, he won several medals, including the Vietnam Cross of Gallantry with Palm. After the war, Bluford enrolled at the Air Force Institute of Technology, where he received a master’s degree in aerospace engineering in 1974. He went on to earn a Ph.D. in the same subject in 1978, the same year that he was picked for the National Aeronautics and Space Administration’s space program. Guion S. Bluford made history on August 30, 1983, when he became the first African American to experience space travel. Bluford was a mission specialist aboard the space shuttle Challenger. He conducted several experiments during the mission, which included 98 Earth orbits in 145 hours and ended on September 5, 1983, when the spacecraft landed at Edwards Air Force Base in California. Bluford later joined crews of three other space missions: He boarded Challenger again in October 1985 for a mission that included 111 Earth orbits in 169 hours and concluded the following month, when Challenger returned to Edwards Air Force Base. His last two missions, in 1991 and 1992, were both completed aboard the orbiter Discovery. Source: biography.com/people/guion-s-bluford-213031



SPORTS ICONS MUHAMMAD ALI Muhammad Ali (original name Cassius Marcellus Clay, Jr. was an American professional boxer, activist, and philanthropist. Nicknamed “The Greatest,” he is widely regarded as one of the most significant and celebrated sports figures of the 20th century and as one of the greatest boxers of all time. After advancing through the amateur ranks, he won a gold medal in the 175-pound division at the 1960 Olympic Games in Rome and began a professional career. Purists cringed when Clay predicted the round in which he intended to knock out an opponent, and they grimaced when he did so and bragged about each new conquest. On February 25, 1964, Clay challenged Sonny Liston for the heavyweight championship of the world. Liston was widely regarded as the most intimidating, powerful fighter of his era. Clay was a decided underdog. But in one of the most stunning upsets in sports history, Liston retired to his corner after six rounds, and Clay became the new champion. Two days later Clay shocked the boxing establishment again by announcing that he had accepted the teachings of the Nation of Islam. On March 6, 1964, he took the name Muhammad Ali, which was given to him by his spiritual mentor, Elijah Muhammad. Then, on April 28, 1967, citing his religious beliefs, Ali refused induction into the U.S. Army at the height of the war in Vietnam. Ali was stripped of his championship and precluded from fighting by every state athletic commission in the United States for three and a half years. In addition, he was criminally indicted and, on June 20, 1967, convicted of refusing induction into the U.S. armed forces and sentenced to five years in prison. Although he remained free on bail, four years passed before his conviction was unanimously overturned by the U.S. Supreme Court on a narrow procedural ground. In October 1970, Ali was allowed to return to boxing, and on March 8, 1971, he challenged Joe Frazier, who had become heavyweight champion during Ali’s absence from the ring. It was a fight of historic proportions, billed as the “Fight of the Century.” Frazier won a unanimous 15-round decision. On October 30, 1974, Ali challenged George Foreman, who had dethroned Frazier in 1973 to become heavyweight champion of the world. The bout took place in Zaire (now the Democratic Republic of the Congo), and Ali knocked out Foreman in the eighth round to regain the heavyweight title. Ali was a member of the inaugural class of the International Boxing Hall of Fame in 1990, and in 2005 he was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom..

Source: britannica.com/biography/Muhammad-Ali-boxer



SPORTS ICONS JOE LOUIS Joseph Louis Barrow, known professionally as Joe Louis, was an American professional boxer. He reigned as the world heavyweight champion from 1937 to 1949, and is considered to be one of the greatest heavyweight boxers of all time. Nicknamed the “Brown Bomber,” his knockout of Germany’s Max Schmeling in 1938 made him a national hero, and he established a record by retaining the championship for nearly 12 years. Joe Louis hit the ground running as a professional in 1934, obliterating opponents with his powerful jab and devastating combos. By the end of 1935, the young fighter had already dispatched former heavyweight champions Primo Carnera and Max Baer. However, he reportedly did not train hard for his first fight against former heavyweight champion Max Schmeling of Germany, and on June 19, 1936, Schmeling scored a 12th-round knockout to hand Louis his first professional defeat. On June 22, 1938, Louis got the chance at a rematch with Schmeling. This time the stakes were higher: With Schmeling hailed as an example of Aryan supremacy by Adolph Hitler, the bout took on heightened nationalistic and racial overtones. This time Louis annihilated his German opponent with a first-round knockout, making him a hero to both black and white Americans. Of his 25 successful title defenses, nearly all came by knockout. After reigning as heavyweight champion for 11 years and eight months, a record, Louis retired on March 1, 1949. Saddled with financial problems, Louis returned to the ring to face new heavyweight champ Ezzard Charles in September 1950, dropping a 15-round decision. He compiled a new winning streak against a series of lesser opponents, but was no match for top contender Rocky Marciano; following their bout on October 26, 1951, which ended in a brutal eighth-round TKO, Louis retired for good with a career record of 68-3, including 54 knockouts. He was inducted into The Ring Magazine Boxing Hall of Fame in 1954 and the International Boxing Hall of Fame in 1990. He was posthumously awarded a Congressional Gold Medal in 1982, and in 1993 he was the first boxer to appear on a commemorative postage stamp. Louis passed away from cardiac arrest on April 12, 1981. Source: biography.com/people/guion-s-bluford-213031



SPORTS ICONS SATCHEL PAIGE He began his professional career in the Negro leagues in the 1920s and quickly became the biggest drawing card in Negro baseball. At the age of 42, Paige made his big league debut when Bill Veeck signed him to a contract with the Indians on July 7, 1948. Two days later, Paige made his debut for a Cleveland club involved in one of the tightest pennant races in American League history. On August 20, 1948, a 42-year-old Satchel Paige pitched the Indians to a 1-0 victory over the White Sox in front of 78,382 fans, a night-game attendance record that still stands. That summer and fall, Paige went 6-1 with three complete games and a save and a 2.47 earned-run average. Cleveland won the AL pennant in a one-game playoff against Boston, then captured the World Series title in six games against the Braves. Paige became the first African-American pitcher to pitch in the World Series when he worked twothirds of an inning in Game 5. Paige pitched for the Indians again in 1949, then spent three seasons with the St. Louis Browns from 1951-53, earning two All-Star Game selections. He then returned to life in the minors and barnstorming, resurfacing in the majors at the age of 59 in a one-game stint with the Athletics. He pitched three shutout innings. Paige was elected to the Hall of Fame in 1971 as the first electee of the Committee on Negro Baseball Leagues. He passed away on June 8, 1982. Source: biography.com/musician/beyonce-knowles



SPORTS ICONS JOSHUA GIBSON “There is a catcher that any big league club would like to buy for $200,000. His name is Gibson. He can do everything. He hits the ball a mile. He catches so easy he might as well be in a rocking chair. Throws like a rifle. Too bad this Gibson is a colored fellow.” Walter Johnson Joshua Gibson was an American Negro league baseball catcher. Baseball historians consider Gibson to be among the very best power hitters and catchers in the history of any league, including Major League Baseball. He was referred to as the black Babe Ruth, but some – then and now – believe it might be just as accurate to call the Bambino the white Josh Gibson1. “There exists no official source of statistics…no compilations of scorecards.…Many gaps exist in the historical record,” an authority on the Negro Leagues points out. The record-keeping was incomplete and non-standardized, so the actual total is unclear and probably unknowable. That reality, that statistics cannot be usefully compared between the Negro Leagues and the pre-integration major leagues, is an unfortunate one, yet it is also largely irrelevant. Josh Gibson was, by so many accounts as to make the claim indisputable, one of the greatest sluggers who ever stepped into a batter’s box. For his “official” career, Josh Gibson hit 107 home runs and batted .350. His Grays teams won nine consecutive league titles at one point, and he played on too many all-star teams to count. Unofficially, he may have homered close to 900 times in various settings. Gibson’s National Baseball Hall of Fame plaque credits him with “almost 800 homers” in a 17-year career, but it is the testimony of his peers that truly underscores Josh Gibson’s prowess. “I played with Willie Mays and against Hank Aaron,” said Monte Irvin. “They were tremendous players but they were no Josh Gibson.” Josh Gibson was elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1972, part of the inaugural induction of former Negro League stars. He was, truly, worthy of the honor. Source: Excerpts from Society for American Baseball Research written by Bill Johnson https://sabr.org/ bioproj/person/df02083c#sdendnote39anc 1 Ken Burns, volume 5 of the documentary series Baseball (“Shadow Ball”, 1994. 2 Lawrence Hogan, Shades of Glory (New York: National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum, 2006): 380



SPORTS ICONS JESSE OWENS James Cleveland “Jesse” Owens was an American track and field athlete and four-time gold medalist in the 1936 Olympic Games. Owens specialized in the sprints and the long jump, and was recognized in his lifetime as “perhaps the greatest and most famous athlete in track and field history”. In 1935, Jesse Owens made sporting history when he broke five world records and equaled a sixth in the space of 45 minutes. One of these world records, 8.13m in the long jump, would last for 25 years. At the 1936 Berlin Games, Owens won four gold medals, in the 100m, 200m, 4x100m relay and the long jump. He managed to break or equal nine Olympic records and also set three world records. One of those world records was in the 4x100m relay. The quartet set a time that wouldn’t be bettered for 20 years. Adolf Hitler hoped that the 1936 Berlin Games would prove his theory of Aryan racial superiority. Instead, Owens’ achievements led the people of Berlin to hail him, an African-American, as a hero. Jesse Owens died of lung cancer in 1980. Since then a street and a school have been named after him in Berlin, two US postage stamps have been issued in his honour, and a memorial park has been opened in Alabama, amongst other tributes.

Source: olympic.org/jesse-owens



SPORTS ICONS JACKIE ROBINSON Jack Roosevelt Robinson was an American professional baseball player who became the first African American to play in Major League Baseball (MLB) in the modern era. Robinson broke the baseball color line when he started at first base for the Brooklyn Dodgers on April 15, 1947. Growing up in a large, single-parent family, Jackie excelled early at all sports and learned to make his own way in life. At UCLA, Jackie became the first athlete to win varsity letters in four sports: baseball, basketball, football and track. In 1941, he was named to the AllAmerican football team. In 1945, Jackie played one season in the Negro Baseball League, traveling all over the Midwest with the Kansas City Monarchs. In 1947, Brooklyn Dodgers president Branch Rickey approached Jackie about joining the Brooklyn Dodgers. The Major Leagues had not had an African-American player since 1889, when baseball became segregated. When Jackie first donned a Brooklyn Dodger uniform, he pioneered the integration of professional athletics in America. By breaking the color barrier in baseball, the nation’s preeminent sport, he courageously challenged the deeply rooted custom of racial segregation in both the North and the South. At the end of Robinson’s rookie season with the Brooklyn Dodgers, he had become National League Rookie of the Year with 12 homers, a league-leading 29 steals, and a .297 average. In 1949, he was selected as the NL’s Most Valuable player of the Year and also won the batting title with a .342 average that same year. As a result of his great success, Jackie was eventually inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1962. Jackie Robinson’s life and legacy will be remembered as one of the most important in American history. In 1997, the world celebrated the 50th Anniversary of Jackie’s breaking Major League Baseball’s color barrier. On the date of Robinson’s historic debut, all Major League teams across the nation celebrated this milestone. Robinson’s No. 42 is the only number to be retired across baseball. Since 2009, MLB honored Robinson on the anniversary of his debut by having all players and staff wear his number, hence the matching uniform numbers every year across baseball..

Source: jackierobinson.com/




SIMONE BILES Simone Biles is a five-time Olympic medalist (4 gold, 1 bronze). She is the holder of twenty-five world championship medals, the most among men and women. She is the first woman gymnast to win three consecutive World all-around titles. She has won the most World Championship gold medals won by a female gymnast in history (10). She is the most decorated World Championship American gymnast with 14 total medals (10 gold, two silver, two bronze). Simone is the first woman to capture four gold medals at a single World Championships (2014 & 2015) since the Soviet Union’s Ludmilla Tourischeva in 1974. She is the first American woman in 23 years to win three all-around national titles. Simone is the first female African American all-around world champion. She was honored as the 2014 Women’s Sports Foundation’s “Sportswoman of the Year,” and in 2016 was named Associated Press Female Athlete of the Year and the BBC Overseas Sports Personality of the Year. She is considered by many to be the greatest gymnast of all time. Source: simonebiles.com/bio




SERENA WILLIAMS Serena Jameka Williams is an African American professional tennis player and former world No. 1 who revolutionized women’s tennis with her powerful style of play. She has won 23 major singles titles, the most by any man or woman in the Open Era. The Women’s Tennis Association ranked her world No. 1 in singles on eight separate occasions between 2002 and 2017. She held the WTA No. 1 ranking in the world for 186 consecutive weeks, which ties Steffi Graf’s record for longest consecutive weeks ranked No. 1. She is a fourtime Olympic gold medalist. In 2008 she established the Serena Williams Foundation, to assist American youth touched by violent crime and also underprivileged children around the world. At age 31 she becomes the oldest female tennis player to be ranked No. 1 since computer rankings began in 1975. Source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Serena_Williams and https://cnn.com/2013/09/13/us/serena-williams-fast-facts/index.html




TIGER WOODS Eldrick Tont “Tiger” Woods is an American professional golfer. He is tied for first in PGA Tour wins and ranks second in men’s major championships, and also holds numerous golf records. Woods is widely regarded as one of the greatest golfers, and one of the most famous athletes of all time. In 1997, he became the youngest man and the first African American to win the U.S. Masters. Woods won another 13 majors and was named the PGA Player of the Year 10 times over the next 12 years, but he struggled to regain his top form after personal problems surfaced in 2009. With his victory at the 2019 Masters, Woods claimed his first major title in nearly 11 years, and he went on to tie Sam Snead’s career record of 82 PGA Tour wins later that year. Source: https://www.biography.com/athlete/tiger-woods




MICHAEL JORDAN Michael Jeffrey Jordan is a professional American basketball player, Olympic athlete, businessperson and actor. Considered one of the best basketball players ever, he dominated the sport from the mid-1980s to the late 1990s. Jordan led the Chicago Bulls to six National Basketball Association championships and earned the NBA’s Most Valuable Player Award five times. With five regular-season MVPs and three All-Star MVPs, Jordan became the most decorated player in the NBA. Outside of his career in basketball, Jordan has been involved in a number of profitable business and commercial ventures. Between his profitable Nike partnership and his ownership of the NBA Charlotte Hornets, Forbes estimated Jordan’s net worth to be over $1 billion in 2018. Source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Serena_Williams and https://cnn.com/2013/09/13/us/serena-williams-fast-facts/index.html




WILMA RUDOLPH Wilma Glodean Rudolph was an African-American sprinter who became a world-record-holding Olympic champion and international sports icon in track and field following her successes in the 1956 and 1960 Olympic Games. In 1960, Rudolph became the first American woman to win three gold medals in track and field at a single Olympics. Held in Rome, Italy, the 1960 Olympic Games were a golden time for Rudolph. After tying a world record with her time of 11.3 seconds in the 100-meter semifinals, she won the event with her windaided mark of 11.0 seconds in the final. Similarly, Rudolph broke the Olympic record in the 200-meter dash (23.2 seconds) in the heats before claiming another gold medal with her time of 24.0 seconds. She was also part of the U.S. team that established the world record in the 400-meter relay (44.4 seconds) before going on to win gold with a time of 44.5 seconds. Source: https://www.biography.com/athlete/wilma-rudolph Photo: www.si.com




ALTHEA GIBSON Althea Neale Gibson was an African American tennis player and professional golfer, who dominated women’s tennis competition in the late 1950s. She was one of the first Black athletes to cross the color line of international tennis. In 1956, she became the first African American to win a Grand Slam title. She was the first black player to win the French (1956), Wimbledon (1957–58), and U.S. Open (1957–58) singles championships. in 1957 Gibson was voted Female Athlete of the Year by the Associated Press, becoming the first African American to receive the honor; she also won the award the following year. Gibson took up professional golf in 1964 and was the first African American member of the Ladies Professional Golf Association. In 1971 she was elected to the International Tennis Hall of Fame. Source: https://www.britannica.com/biography/Althea-Gibson




JIM BROWN James Nathaniel Brown is an African American former professional football player, sports analyst and actor. He was a fullback for the Cleveland Browns of the National Football League from 1957 through 1965. In college, Brown dominated the competition, both on the football field and on the basketball court. He also ran track and was a talented lacrosse player. Along with his acting ambitions, Brown sought to use his fame and influence in the service of African American causes. In the 1960s, he threw his support behind blackowned businesses by helping to create the Negro Industrial Economic Union. In the late 1980s, he started the Amer-I-Can program, which aimed to turn the lives of young gang members around. In 2002, Brown was named the greatest football player of all time by The Sporting News. In SPRING 2020, during halftime of the college football national championship game, he was recognized as the top college football player ever. He was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1971. Source: https://www.biography.com/athlete/jim-brown Photo: athlonsports.com




HANK AARON Hank Aaron ascended the ranks of the Negro Leagues to become a Major League Baseball icon. He spent most of his 23 seasons as an outfielder for the Milwaukee and Atlanta Braves, during which time he set many records, including a career total of 755 home runs. Aaron ranks second all-time in home runs (755), third in hits (3,771), third in games played (3,298) and fourth in runs scored (2,174). Over the course of his career, he won two batting titles, led his league in homers and RBIs four times each, and won three Gold Gloves for fielding excellence. In 1999, Major League Baseball introduced the Hank Aaron Award to honor the top hitter in each league. The iconic Babe Ruth finished his career in 1935 with 714 home runs, a record considered untouchable until Aaron tied Ruth’s record in 1974, and then on April 8, 1974, he banged out his record 715th home run breaking the legendary Babe Ruth’s almost 40 year old record. After retiring as a player, Aaron moved into the Atlanta Braves front office as executive vice president, where he became a leading spokesman for minority hiring in baseball. He was elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1982. Source: https://www.biography.com/athlete/hank-aaron Photo: sportingnews.com




BILLIE HOLIDAY Eleanora Fagan, professionally known as Billie Holiday, was an African American jazz singer with a career spanning nearly thirty years. Also known as Lady Day, she had a seminal influence on jazz music and pop singing. At the age of 18, Holiday was discovered by producer John Hammond while she was performing in a Harlem jazz club. Hammond was instrumental in getting Holiday recording work with an up-and-coming clarinetist and bandleader, Benny Goodman. Holiday later toured with the Count Basie Orchestra in 1937. The following year, she worked with Artie Shaw and his orchestra. Holiday broke new ground with Shaw, becoming one of the first female African American vocalists to work with a white orchestra. Promoters, however, objected to Holiday—for her race and for her unique vocal style—and she ended up leaving the orchestra out of frustration. Holiday married James Monroe in 1941. Already known to drink, Holiday picked up her new husband’s habit of smoking opium. That same year, Holiday had a hit with “God Bless the Child.” Holiday gave her final performance in New York City on May 25, 1959. Not long after this event, Holiday was admitted to the hospital for heart and liver problems. She was so addicted to heroin that she was even arrested for possession while in the hospital. On July 17, 1959, Holiday died from alcohol- and drug-related complications. Her autobiography was made into the 1972 film Lady Sings the Blues with famed singer Diana Ross playing the part of Holiday. In 2000, Holiday was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Source: https://www.biography.com/musician/billie-holiday Photo: ethnicseattle.com




ARETHA FRANKLIN Aretha Louise Franklin was an American singer, songwriter, pianist, and civil rights activist, who defined the golden age of soul music of the 1960s. Franklin began her career as a child singing gospel at New Bethel Baptist Church in Detroit, Michigan, where her father C. L. Franklin was minister. Franklin’s musical gifts became apparent at an early age. Largely self-taught, she was regarded as a child prodigy. A gifted pianist with a powerful voice. At age 18, with her father’s blessing, Franklin switched from sacred to secular music. She moved to New York City, where Columbia Records executive John Hammond arranged her recording contract. While Franklin’s career did not immediately flourish, she found acclaim and commercial success after signing with Atlantic Records in 1966, where producer Jerry Wexler allowed her to sculpt her own musical identity. At Atlantic, Franklin returned to her gospel-blues roots, and the results were sensational. By the end of the 1960s, Aretha Franklin had come to be known as “The Queen of Soul”. In 1987 she became the first female artist to be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, and in 2008 she won her 18th Grammy Award, making her one of the most honored artists in Grammy history. Source: https://www.biography.com/musician/aretha-franklin and https://www.britannica.com/biography/Aretha-Franklin Photo: thetimes.co.uk




SAM COOKE Sam Cooke was an African American singer, songwriter, civil-rights activist and entrepreneur. He is commonly known as the King of Soul for his distinctive vocals and importance within popular music. Forging a link between soul and pop, he had a diverse repertoire that attracted both black and white audiences. He established his own publishing company for his music in 1959 and negotiated an impressive contract with RCA in 1960, that included ownership of his master recordings after 30 years. He continued to be a pioneer behind the scenes, founding his own record label in the early 1960s. No one knows for certain what exactly happened in the early hours of December 11, 1964. Cooke and a woman he was with at the Hacienda Motel, named Elisa Boyer, had some type of altercation in their room, and Cooke then ended up in the motel’s office. He reportedly clashed with the motel’s manager, and the manager shot Cooke. Cooke died from his injury. It was later ruled justifiable homicide. Cooke was inducted into the Rock and Rock Hall of Fame in 1986. Source: https://www.biography.com/musician/sam-cooke




SAMMIE DAVIS JR. Samuel George Davis Jr. was an American singer, musician, dancer, actor, vaudevillian, comedian and activist known for his impressions of actors, musicians and other celebrities. At age three, Davis Jr. began his career in vaudeville with his father Sammy Davis Sr. and the Will Mastin Trio, which toured nationally. Davis studied tap dancing under Bill “Bojangles� Robinson but never received a formal education. After serving in the U.S. Army he became the central figure of the Mastin Trio, not only singing and dancing but also playing trumpet, drums, piano, and vibraphone; moreover, he was an accomplished mime and comedian. He encountered virulent racial prejudice early in his career, but he endured to become one of the first African American stars to achieve wide popularity. As his fame grew, his refusal to appear in any clubs that practiced racial segregation led to the integration of several venues in Miami Beach and Las Vegas. Along with his extremely successful nightclub career, Davis was also a popular recording artist, and he was successful on Broadway. Davis was a heavy smoker, and in 1989 doctors discovered a tumor in his throat. Although Davis underwent radiation therapy and the disease appeared to be in remission, but it was later discovered to have returned. On May 16, 1990, Sammy Davis Jr. passed away at his home in Beverly Hills, California, at the age of 64. Source: britannica.com/biography/Sammy-Davis-Jr



ENTERTAINMENT ICONS BEYONCÉ Beyoncé Giselle Knowles-Carter is a multi-platinum, Grammy Award-winning recording artist, songwriter, record producer, and actress who’s acclaimed for her thrilling vocals, videos and live shows. Beyoncé first captured the public’s eye as lead vocalist of the R&B group Destiny’s Child. She later established a solo career with her debut album Dangerously in Love, becoming one of music’s top-selling artists with sold-out tours and a slew of awards. Beyoncé is the first female artist to debut at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 with her first five studio albums. Her selftitled fifth studio album was the fastest-selling album distributed in iTunes history, having sold more than 80,000 copies in three hours, and more than 800,000 copies throughout the weekend it was released alone. Knowles has also starred in several films, including Dream Girls. She married hip-hop recording artist Jay-Z in 2008 and the couple has three children. At the 2010 Grammy Awards, Knowles walked away with six honors — the most wins in a single night by a female artist at the time. By 2013, Knowles had won 16 Grammys. One year after she canceled a planned appearance at Coachella because of her pregnancy, Knowles took the stage for an eagerly anticipated performance at the April 2018 music festival. The first black woman to headline the event, Knowles wowed attendees and critics alike. In addition to acting and performing, Knowles ran a clothing line called House of Dereon with her mother. She also launched her own fragrance, Heat, in 2010. Throughout her career, Knowles has served as a spokesperson and model for several other brands, including L’Oreal and Tommy Hilfiger. Source: biography.com/musician/beyonce-knowles




WHITNEY HOUSTON Whitney Elizabeth Houston was cited as the most awarded female artist of all time by Guinness World Records and remains one of the best-selling music artists of all time with 200 million records sold worldwide. Music historians cite Whitney’s record-setting achievements: the only artist to chart seven consecutive #1 Billboard Hot 100 hits; the first female artist to enter the Billboard 200 album chart at #1; and the only artist with eight consecutive multi-platinum albums. In fact, The Bodyguard soundtrack is one of the top 5 biggest-selling albums of all-time (at 18x-platinum in the U.S. alone), and Whitney’s career-defining version of Dolly Parton’s “I Will Always Love You” is the biggestselling single of all time by a female artist (at 8x-platinum for physical and digital in the U.S. alone). After establishing her screen appeal in her well-received music videos, Whitney finally made her movie debut in The Bodyguard (November 1992). The film broke box office records worldwide. Guinness World Records lists Whitney as music’s “most awarded female artist of all time,” with an amazing tally of 411 awards (as of 2006), including six GRAMMY Awards, 16 Billboard Music Awards, 22 American Music Awards, two Emmy Award nominations and one win, as well as MTV VMAs in the U.S. and Europe, NAACP Image Awards, BET Awards, Soul Train Music Awards, and so on. Nearly 35 years after the release of her debut album, Whitney was honored with induction into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Class of 2020. Source: whitneyhouston.com/biography/




RAY CHARLES Ray Charles Robinson was an American singer, songwriter, pianist, and composer. He was often referred to as “The Genius.” He was a pioneer of soul music, integrating R&B, gospel, pop and country. he is considered one of the greatest artists of all time. Charles started losing his vision at the age of 6 due to glaucoma. He was blind by the age of 7, and his mother sent him to a state-sponsored school, where he learned to read, write and arrange music in Braille. He also learned to play piano, organ, sax, clarinet and trumpet. The year 1960 brought Charles his first Grammy Award for “Georgia on My Mind,” followed by another Grammy for the single “Hit the Road, Jack.” Charles avoided jail after his arrest for possession by finally kicking the habit at a clinic in Los Angeles. During his lifetime, Charles recorded more than 60 albums and performed more than 10,000 concerts. Charles won 17 Grammy Awards, he was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1986 and received the Songwriters’ Hall of Fame 1993 Lifetime Achievement Award. Charles learned he was suffering from liver disease, and he died on June 10, 2004, at his home in Beverly Hills, California. Source: biography.com/musician/ray-charles




STEVIE WONDER Stevland Hardaway Morris, better known by his stage name Stevie Wonder, is an African American singer, songwriter, musician, multi-instrumentalist and record producer. He was born six weeks early with retinopathy of prematurity, an eye disorder which was exacerbated when he received too much oxygen in an incubator, leading to blindness. Stevie Wonder made his recording debut at age 11 when he was discovered by Ronnie White of the Motown recording group The Miracles. An audition followed with Motown founder Berry Gordy Jr., who didn’t hesitate to sign the young musician to a record deal. Over the next decade, Wonder had an array of No. 1 songs on the pop and R&B charts. In 1971, Wonder negotiated a new contract with Motown that gave him almost total control over his records and greatly increased his royalty rate. Wonder continued to churn out hits into the 1980s. In addition to his acclaimed artistry, Wonder has routinely tackled social issues through his music and appearances. He successfully spearhead a movement to create a national holiday recognizing the birthday of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. On March 25th 1985, Wonder dedicated his Oscar win for Best Original Song with “I Just Called To Say I Love You,” featured in the movie The Woman In Red, to anti-apartheid activist/future president Nelson Mandela. He was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1989. Wonder has won 25 Grammy Awards, as well as a Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award in 1996. He is one of only two artists and groups who have won the Grammy for Album of the Year three times as the main credited artist, along with Frank Sinatra. In 2014, Wonder received the Presidential Medal of Freedom from President Barack Obama. Source: biography.com/musician/stevie-wonder




MICHAEL JACKSON Michael Joseph Jackson was an African American singer, songwriter, and dancer regarded as one of the most significant cultural figures of the 20th century and one of the greatest entertainers in the history of music. Jackson released several solo albums in the ’70s, but his great breakthrough came in 1979 with Off the Wall. He became the first solo artist to score four Top 10 hits from one album. His next album, Thriller (1983), became the biggest selling album up to that time, selling some 45 million copies around the world. This time, he scored seven Top 10 singles, and the album won eight Grammys. The album stayed on the charts for 80 weeks, holding the No. 1 spot for 37 weeks. In 1991, Jackson signed an unprecedented $65 million record deal with Sony. Jackson underwent a facelift and nose job and was rumored to have lightened his skin through chemical treatment. In 1993, Jackson agreed to a rare television interview with Oprah Winfrey to quell rumors. He explained that the change in his skin tone was the result of a skin condition known as vitiligo, and he opened up about the abuse he suffered from his father. Michael Jackson was inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame as a member of Jackson 5 in 1997, and later as a solo artist in 2001. Michael Jackson died on June 25, 2009, in Los Angeles, California.. Source: history.com/this-day-in-history/michael-jackson-is-born, en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Michael_Jackson, and biography.com/ musician/michael-jackson




PRINCE Prince Rogers Nelson was an African American singer, songwriter, musician, record producer, dancer, actor, and filmmaker. Prince is regarded as one of the greatest musicians in the history of popular music. Prince taught himself how to play the piano, guitar and drums and was a rare composer who could perform at a professional level on virtually all the instruments he required, and a considerable number of his recordings feature him in all the performing roles. With his band the Revolution, Prince went on to create the classic album Purple Rain (1984), which also served as the soundtrack to the film of the same name, grossing almost $70 million at the U.S. box office. The movie garnered an Academy Award for Best Original Song Score. In the fall of 1992 Prince signed a record $100 million dollar deal with Warner Bros., which was considered “the largest recording and music publishing contract in history� at the time. Prince has sold over 100 million records worldwide, he was nominated for 38 Grammy Awards over the years and won a grand total of seven. Prince was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2004. Prince was found dead at his Paisley Park estate on April 21, 2016. An autopsy later revealed that he had died from an accidental overdose of fentanyl, a powerful opioid.. Source: biography.com/musician/prince, en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Prince_(musician), britannica.com/biography/Prince-singer-andsongwriter


MILLENIALS CHAN T h is yea r let’s not on ly remember t hose t hat paved a way for us, but let’s

FREDDIE FIGGERS Founder of Figgers Communication First Ever Black-Owned 4G LTE Smart Phone

ANGEL RICH Founder, The Wealth Factory, Inc., which designs financial literacy and workforce development education technology. Creator, Credit Stacker app. Named by Forbes Magazine as “The Next Steve Jobs.”


wanted little brown girls to be able to see themselves in the books they read, so she founded #1000BlackGirlBooks, a social media campaign to collect and donate children’s books with black girl protagonists. The youngest person on Forbes’ 30 Under 30 list.


a lso support those that a re still here pav ing a way for the black communit y


is an African American activist who was one of the leading organizers of the 2017 Women’s March, for which she and her three other cochairs were recognized in the Time 100 year. Mallory is a proponent of gun control, feminism, and the Black Lives Matter movement.


is the founder and CEO of DC Design, a social impact design firm that uses Human-Centered Design to co-develop validated, long lasting solutions to complex social problems, such as new approaches to criminal justice reform and developing new educational models for the 21st century.

MORGAN DEBAUN is an African American entrepreneur who is the cofounder and CEO of Blavity, the largest media company for black millennials. Blavity’s network includes five websites including Blavity.com, 21ninety. com, Travelnoire.com, AfroTech. com, and Shadowandact.com.


Crispus Attucks becomes one of the first casualties of the American Revolution.

Mar. 13, 1773

Jean Baptiste Pointe DuSable, Black pioneer and explorer, founded the city of Chicago.

June 17, 1775

Peter Salem, a Minuteman, fights in the battle of Bunker Hill.

Feb. 2, 1807

Congress bans foreign slave trade.

May 24, 1854

Lincoln University of Pennsylvania, the first Black college in the U. S. is founded.

Sept. 22, 1862

The Emancipation Proclamation is announced.

Jan. 1, 1863

President Abraham Lincoln issues Emancipation Proclamation.

Jan 24, 1865

Congress passes 13th Amendment, which on ratification abolished slavery.

June 19, 1865

Blacks in Texas notified of Emancipation Proclamation; Juneteenth now marks this event.

Jan 9, 1866

Fisk University is founded in Nashville, Tennessee.

Mar. 2, 1867

U. S. Congress enacts charter to establish Howard University.

Nov. 28, 1868

14th Amendment, granting Blacks full citizenship rights, becomes part of the Constitution.

Mar. 30, 1870

15th Amendment ratified, guaranteeing voting rights to African Americans.

July 2, 1872

Elijah McCoy patents his first self-lubricating locomotive engine. The quality of his inventions helped coin the phrase “The Real McCoy.�

Dec. 9, 1872

P.B.S. Pinchback from Louisiana becomes first African American governor in U. S.

Feb. 14, 1879

B. K. Bruce becomes first African American to preside over U. S. Senate.

Dec. 2, 1884

Granville T. Woods patents telephone transmitter.

Apr. 7, 1885

Granville T. Woods patents Synchronous Multiplex Railway Telegraph.

Sept. 13, 1886

Alain Locke, literary critic and first African American Rhodes Scholar, is born.



Granville T. Woods patents telephone system and apparatus.

May 14, 1888

Slavery abolished in Brazil.

July 5, 1892

Andrew J. Beard patents rotary engine.

July 9, 1893

Dr. Daniel Hale Williams performs first successful open-heart operation.

Sept. 18, 1895

Booker T. Washington delivers famous Atlanta Exposition speech.

May 18, 1896

Plessy vs. Ferguson, U. S. Supreme Court upholds the doctrine of "separate but equal" education and public accommodations.

Oct. 20, 1898

The first African American owned insurance company, North Carolina Life Insurance Company, is founded.

May 23, 1900

Sgt. William H. Carney, first African American awarded Congressional Medal of Honor for valor at Fort Wagner, S. C., 1863.

Nov. 6, 1901

James Weldon Johnson and J. Rosamond Johnson compose "Lift Every Voice and Sing", widely regarded as the Black national anthem.

Feb. 12, 1909

NAACP founded in New York City.

Apr. 6, 1909

Matthew A. Henson, Black explorer, becomes first to reach North Pole.

Sept. 29, 1910

National Urban League founded in New York City.

July 25, 1916

Garrett Morgan, inventor of the gas mask, rescues six people from gasfilled tunnel in Cleveland, OH.

Aug. 26, 1920

19th Amendment, giving women the right to vote is ratified.

Feb. 19, 1923

In Moore vs. Dempsey decision, U. S. Supreme Court guarantees due process of law for Blacks in state courts.

Jan. 29, 1926

Violette Nealy Anderson becomes the first Black woman lawyer to argue a case before the U.S. Supreme Court.

Aug. 23, 1926

Carter G. Woodson, educator, historian and author, inaugurates Negro History Week.

May 16, 1927

William H.Barnes becomes the first African American certified by any American Surgical Board.

Dec. 6, 1932

Richard B. Spikes patents automatic gearshift.


July 22, 1939

Jane M. Bolin from New York City, appointed first African American female judge.

Mar. 9, 1941

Amistad defendants freed by U.S. Supreme Court.

Dec. 22, 1943

W.E.B. DuBois, first African American elected to National Institute of Arts & Letters.

Dec. 13, 1944

First African American servicewomen sworn into the WAVES.

June 21, 1945

Col. Benjamin O. Davis, Jr. becomes first African American to command U.S. Army Corps base.

Apr. 10, 1947

Jackie Robinson first African American to play baseball in major leagues.

Jan. 12, 1948

Supreme Court rules African Americans have right to study law at state institutions.

July 12, 1949

Frederick M. Jones patents air conditioning unit used in food transportation vehicles.

Dec. 10, 1950

Dr. Ralph J. Bunche becomes the first Black to be awarded the Nobel Peace Prize.

May 17, 1954

U. S. Supreme Court declares segregation in public schools unconstitutional in Brown vs. Board of Education decision.

Sept. 7, 1954

Washington, D.C. and Baltimore, MD public schools integrated.

Oct. 27, 1954

Benjamin O. Davis, Jr. becomes first African American general in the U.S. Air Force.

Dec. 5, 1955

Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. organizes Birmingham bus boycott.

Oct. 3, 1956

Nat King Cole becomes first Black performer to host his own TV show.

Sept. 24, 1957

Federal troops enforce court-ordered integration as nine children, who become known as the Little Rock Nine, integrate Central High School in Little Rock, AR.

Feb. 1, 1960

Four students at North Carolina Agricultural and Technical College in Greensboro, N.C., begin a sit-in at Woolworth's Drug Store.

May 4, 1961

Freedom Riders begin protesting segregation of interstate bus travel in the South.

Aug. 5, 1962

Nelson Mandella, South African freedom fighter, imprisoned. He was not released until 1990.

Sept. 30, 1962

Under protection of federal marshalls, James Meredith enrolls as the first African American student at University of Mississippi.

June 12, 1963

Medgar W. Evers, civil rights leader, is assassinated in Jackson, MS.

Aug. 28, 1963

The March on Washington becomes the largest civil rights demonstration in U.S. history. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. delivers famous “I Have A Dream� speech.


Sept. 15, 1963

Four African American girls killed in Birmingham, AL church bombing.

June 24, 1964

Carl T. Rowan appointed the Director of the U.S. Information Agency.

Oct. 14, 1964

At 35, Dr. M. L. King, Jr., becomes youngest man ever to win Nobel Peace Prize.

Feb. 21, 1965

Malcolm X assassinated in New York.

Mar. 14, 1965

Montgomery bus boycott ends when municipal bus service is desegregated.

Mar. 21, 1965

Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. leads voting rights march from Selma to Montgomery, AL.

July 13, 1965

Thurgood Marshall becomes first African American appointed U.S. Solicitor General.

Jan. 3, 1967

Edward William Brooke III becomes the first black senator (Massachusetts) since Reconstruction.

June 13, 1967

Thurgood Marshall becomes first African American appointed to U.S. Supreme Court.

Apr. 4, 1968

Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. assassinated in Memphis.

Nov. 5, 1968

Shirley Chisholm of Brooklyn, NY, becomes first African American woman elected to Congress.

Feb. 13, 1970

Joseph L. Searles becomes first African American member of NY Stock Exchange.

Nov. 26, 1970

Charles Gordone becomes first Black playwright to receive the Pulitzer Prize for drama for his play No Place to Be Somebody.

Jan. 4, 1971

Congressional Black Caucus formed

Jun. 2, 1971

Samuel L. Gravely, Jr. becomes first African American admiral in U.S. Navy.

May 29, 1973

Tom Bradley elected mayor of Los Angeles.

Oct. 16, 1973

Maynard Jackson elected mayor of Atlanta.

Apr. 8, 1974

Hank Aaron breaks Babe Ruth's career all-time home run record.

July 5, 1975

Arthur Ashe becomes the first African-American male to win the British Men's Singles championship at Wimbledon.

Feb. 3, 1977

The eighth and final episode of the mini-series, Roots, based on Alex Haley’s novel, airs, receiving the highest ratings for a single program.

Jan. 16, 1978

NASA names Black astronauts: Maj. Frederick D. Gregory, Maj. Guion S. Bluford, and Dr. Ronald McNair.

Nov. 30, 1982

Michael Jackson releases Thriller; with sales of $110 million, it becomes the best-selling recording of all time.


Apr. 12, 1983

Harold Washington becomes first African American mayor of Chicago.

Apr. 18, 1983

Alice Walker's The Color Purple wins the Pulitzer Prize for fiction.

June 22, 1983

The State Legislature of Louisiana repeals the last racial-classification law in the U.S.

Aug. 30, 1983

Lt. Col. Guion S. Bluford becomes first African American astronaut in space.

Sept. 17, 1983

Vanessa Williams becomes first African American woman to win Miss America.

Aug. 10, 1984

Carl Lewis wins four gold medals at the L.A. Olympics, matching Jesse Owens' record of 1936.

Jan. 20, 1986

First Martin Luther King Day celebrated.

Sept. 8, 1986

The Oprah Winfrey Show is syndicated in more than 120 American cities.

June 5, 1987

Dr. Mae C. Jemison becomes first Black woman astronaut.

Mar. 31, 1988

Toni Morrison wins Pulitzer Prize for Beloved.

July 20, 1988

Jesse Jackson receives 1,218 delegate votes at the Democratic National Convention.

Feb. 22, 1989

Col. Frederick D. Gregory becomes the first African American to command a space shuttle mission.

Apr. 20, 1989

Five black and Latino teens (Antron McCray, Kevin Richardson, Yusef Salaam, Raymond Santana, and Korey Wise), who became known as the Central Park Five, were arrested for the assault and rape of Trisha Meili, a 28-year-old white investment banker. In 2002, the five were later exonerated and their charges were vacated.

Aug. 10, 1989

Gen. Colin Powell is nominated Chairman, Joint Chiefs of Staff, the first African American to hold the post.

Jan. 13, 1990

L. Douglas Wilder becomes first African American U. S. governor (Virginia) since Reconstruction.

Feb. 11, 1990

Nelson Mandela is freed after 27 years in prison.

Apr. 13, 1990

African-American playwright August Wilson wins Pulitzer Prize for The Piano Lesson.

Nov. 6, 1990

Sharon Pratt Kelley elected mayor of Washington, D.C., the first AfricanAmerican female to head a major city.

Mar. 3, 1991

Rodney King brutally beaten in San Fernando Valley by L.A. police officers, sparking riots, an investigation and subsequent trial.

Sept. 12, 1992

Dr. Mae C. Jemison becomes first African American woman to travel in space.


Oct. 7, 1993

Toni Morrison becomes the first African American to win the Nobel Prize for literature.

Oct. 16, 1995

Million Man March held in Washington, D.C.

July 9, 2000

Venus Williams becomes the first black woman to win the Women's Singles title at Wimbledon since Althea Gibson in 1957 and 1958.

Dec. 16, 2000

President George W. Bush appoints Colin L. Powell as secretary of state.

Dec. 17, 2000

President George W. Bush appoints Condoleezza Rice as national security adviser.

July 3, 2001

Ruth Simmons becomes first black president of an Ivy League university, Brown University.


Four black men — Kenneth Chenault (American Express), Richard Parsons (Time Warner), Franklin Raines (Fannie Mae) and E. Stanley O'Neal (Merrill Lynch) — have become CEOs of Fortune 500 companies.

Nov. 7, 2006

Deval Patrick is elected first African American governor of Massachusetts.

Nov. 4, 2008

Barack Hussein Obama elected first African American president of the U.S.

Feb. 2, 2009

The U.S. Senate confirms, with a vote of 75 to 21, Eric H. Holder Jr. as attorney general of the United States. Holder is the first African American to serve as attorney general.

June 25, 2009

Michael Jackson, the "King of Pop," dies of a drug overdose.

Nov. 10, 2009

President Obama delivers his acceptance speech in Stockholm, Sweden on receiving the Nobel Peace Prize.

Aug. 22, 2011

The Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial on the National Mall in Washington, D.C. opens to the public, and is officially dedicated on October 16.

Jan. 20, 2013

Barack Obama is sworn in for his second term as president.

This timeline is not intended to be an all-inclusive listing of all historical events involving African Americans, but is a compilation of the achievements of many great black Americans and some of the major events in black American history gathered from various sources.




August 23, 1978 - January 26, 2020

GIA N NA “GIGI” BRYA N T May 1, 2006 - January 26, 2020

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