It’s Black History Month

Celebrating some of our favorite Black heroes

February is Black History Month and recognized nationally for all Americans to take time and reflect on some of the achievements made by Black Americans throughout U.S history. The event that we know now today started when Carter G. Woodson and his organization the Association for the Study of Negro Life and History (ASNLH) created Negro History Week in February of 1925. The celebration and response to this creation flourished exponentially. In 1976 the ASALH expanded the event through all of February. 

Join us as we learn about important black figures from the past and today.

Kobe Bryant

Kobe Bryant is well known for his remarkable basketball career. His athletic journey was centered around Los Angeles as he played with the Lakers for 20 years. Bryant is not only known as an influential athlete, but as an inspirational role model to many reporters, players, coaches, and his fans. Bryant created what he called Mamba Mentality.

“Mamba mentality is all about focusing on the process and trusting in the hard work when it matters most,” Bryant said. Tragically, Bryant passed away in a helicopter accident on Jan. 26, 2020. Since his passing millions of people have reflected on the athlete’s positive impact and continue to carry out his legacy. 

Some of Bryant’s prominent accomplishments include:

  • NBA Championships
  • Two NBA Finals MVP
  • 2008 NBA MVP
  • 1997 Slam Dunk Champion award
  • 18-time NBA All-Star
  • 15-time All-NBA Team
  • 12-time NBA All-Defensive Team Selection
  • 2 Olympic Gold Medals in the 2008 and 2012 Olympics

 Barack Obama

Barack Obama was the first black president of the United States. He was in office from January 20, 2009, to January 20, 2017. Obama had been a sign of hope and representation for many black individuals across the country. Since his first day in office, Obama worked for the betterment of the nation’s black community. His strides to provide economic and educational opportunities, improve health care coverage, and work on the criminal justice system. Some of his efforts include:

Some of  Obama’s prominent accomplishments include:

  • Launching My Brother’s Keeper initiative to help create opportunities for boys and young men of color.
  • Increasing the real median income of black households by 4.1 percent between 2014 and 2015.
  • Decreasing the poverty rate by 2.1 percentage points in 2015, lower than any year since 1999.

Dr. Kizzmekia Corbett

Dr. Kizzmekia Corbett is an American viral immunologist. She earned her bachelor’s in Biological Sciences and Sociology at the University of Maryland in 2008. In 2014, she earned her Ph.D. in Philosophy in Microbiology and Immunology from the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill. Corbett used her skills and together she and her team were able to create mRNA-1273 for the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine. The sequence released was shown to be 94.1% effective in phase three of its clinical trial. This vaccine has been used in several countries. She has 15 years of experience in her field.

Some of Dr. Kizzmekia’s prominent accomplishments include:

  • Proclamation: “Dr. Kizzmekia ‘Kizzy’ Day” – January 28, 2021
  • Hall of Fame Honoree Feb. 2021
  • Key of Life Award Feb. 2021
  • Benjamin Franklin NextGen Award April 2021
  • Scroll of Merit Award April 2021

Viola Davis

Viola Davis is a famous black actress and a good one too. Davis is the first black actress in history to win an Oscar, a Tony, and an Emmy. Davis is not only known for her groundbreaking roles, but also for her passion for people and activism. Her passion is sparked by her real-life struggles of growing up in poverty and being a minority. Davis is a vocal advocate for the Rape Foundation and for the Hunger Is foundation. She is co-president and CEO for JuVee Productions. This studio produces narratives on race, gender, and politics. Davis’ compassion and talent have reached millions of people. 

Some of Davis’s prominent accomplishments include:

As of 2021, she is the most nominated black actress in the Academy Award’s history, with 4 nominations.