Posts tagged with "Black History Month"

New Sites on Historic Civil Rights Trail

Memphis’ Beale Street Historic District and WDIA Radio Station Added to U.S. Civil Rights Trail

Beale Street Historic District joins together the Historic Daisy Theater/Randle Catron Interpretive Center, the Withers Collection Museum and Gallery, Historic First Baptist Beale Street Church and Robert R. Church Park.

WDIA Radio and the Beale Street Historic District are now stops on the U.S. Civil Rights Trail as announced today by Gov. Bill Lee; Commissioner Mark Ezell, Tennessee Dept. of Tourist Development and Secretary/Treasurer of the U.S. Civil Rights Trail Marketing Alliance; Memphis Mayor Strickland; Shelby County Mayor Lee Harris; and President and CEO of Memphis Tourism Kevin Kane. The announcement was made during a press event hosted by Memphis Tourism at the original B.B. Kings on Beale Street.

“Today is a special day as Tennessee shines a brighter light on the brave men and women who stood up for equal rights,” said Gov. Bill Lee. “I am proud that with the addition of these two sites, travelers from around the world will have the opportunity to learn more about Memphis’ deep civil rights history.”

This acceptance is in large part due to Memphis Tourism’s efforts alongside Tennessee Department of Tourist Development’s continued leadership and their sustaining membership of the U.S. Civil Rights Trail Marketing Alliance.

WDIA Radio was the first radio station in the country programmed entirely for African Americans. Efforts to break down racial boundaries pushed WDIA Radio to the top of the charts, both on the air and in the Memphis community.

The Beale Street Historic District is a National Historic Landmark. The 15-block area was a hotbed for several African American businesses, a Freedman’s Bank, the headquarters of Ida B. Wells’ anti-segregationist newspaper, “Free Speech,” and churches after the Civil War. African Americans came to work, entertain and be entertained, shop and strategize during the Civil Rights Movement.

“The addition of Beale Street and WDIA to the U.S. Civil Rights Trail will help spread the word of the historical significance of this community to our country’s long journey to equality and human rights,” said Mayor Lee Harris, Shelby County Mayor. “Both these sites will be invaluable additions to the trail and these additions will lead to countless conversations and learning opportunities for visitors and our residents.”

WDIA Radio and the Beale Street Historic District join original stops in Memphis which include Clayborn Temple, Mason Temple Church of God in Christ and the National Civil Rights Museum at the Lorraine Motel.

The U.S. Civil Rights Trail is a collection of churches, courthouses, schools, museums and other landmarks in the Southern states and beyond that played a pivotal role in advancing social justice in the 1940s, 1950s and 1960s, shifting the course of history.

With the newly-added stops, Tennessee now has 12 stops on the U.S. Civil Rights Trail including Fisk University and Woolworth’s on 5th in Nashville and Green McAdoo Cultural Center in Clinton. Visitors from around the world travel to Tennessee to explore where history was made.

For more information on Tennessee’s trail sites, visit www.tncivilrightstrail.com.

To learn about other states’ sites on the U.S. Civil Rights Trail, visit civilrightstrail.com.

About the U.S. Civil Rights Trail
The U.S. Civil Rights Trail is a collection of churches, courthouses, schools, museums and other landmarks primarily in the Southern states where activists challenged segregation in the 1940s, 1950s and 1960s to advance social justice. Famous sites such as the Edmund Pettus Bridge in Selma, Alabama; Little Rock Central High School in Arkansas; the Greensboro, North Carolina, Woolworth’s where sit-ins began; the National Civil Rights Museum at the Lorraine Motel in Memphis, Tennessee; and Dr. King’s birthplace in Atlanta, to name a few. The people, locations and destinations included in the Civil Rights Trail provide a way for families, travelers, and educators to experience history firsthand and tell the story of how “what happened here changed the world.” For details about dozens of significant sites and to see interviews with civil rights foot soldiers, visit civilrightstrail.com.

About Memphis
Memphis is a world-class sports destination that is complemented by the legendary food and music the city is known for around the world. The city is headlined by live music and full of one-of-a-kind experiences that include Beale Street, National Civil Rights Museum, Stax Museum of American Soul Music, Sun Studio, Elvis Presley’s Graceland and Memphis Zoo, home to two giant pandas. Stunning Mississippi River views, mouthwatering barbecue, lively festivals, and intriguing galleries and museums round out the many attractions and activities for visitors to experience in Memphis. These only begin the list of what’s so great about the Home of the Blues, Soul and Rock ‘n’ Roll. For more information, visit www.memphistravel.com

About the Tennessee Department of Tourist Development
Tennessee is the home of the blues, bluegrass, country, gospel, soul, rockabilly and rock ‘n’ roll-delivering an unparalleled experience of beauty, history and family adventure, infused with music that creates a vacation that is “The Soundtrack of America. Made in Tennessee.” In 2018, Tennessee’s tourism industry generated $22.02 billion in economic impact, more than $1.81 billion in state and local tax revenue and more than 187,757 tourism-related jobs. Explore more at tnvacation.com and join other Tennessee travelers by following “tnvacation” on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram and YouTube or “Tennessee” on Snapchat.

Not Me App

Women of color experience harassment at greater rates than other women –studies show that 25% of all black women are harassed. Blacks also reported a 60% higher rate of discrimination compared to whites.
 
Ninety percent of employees who are the victims of harassment never file a formal complaint, now with the #NotMe App, safety is literally in everyone’s hands.
 
#NotMe is a free mobile misconduct solution that supports anyone who needs help. The open platform empowers anyone to safely report misconduct they’ve witnessed or experienced, in real time, right on their mobile device in as little as 3 minutes. Reporting can also be anonymous, eliminating fear of retaliation in the workplace.

Qatar Airways and Brooklyn Nets x Black History Month

Qatar Airways and Brooklyn Nets Celebrate Black History Month

To tip off the month, Qatar Airways hosted students and former Tuskegee
Airman for a series of events

On Monday, Qatar Airways, official airline partner of the Brooklyn Nets, celebrated Black History Month
by honoring the historical achievements of African Americans during the Nets game at Barclays Center.
The luxury airline invited Tuskegee Airman Willie Jackson, local community organization, United Youth
Aviators, and students and alumni from Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) to enjoy a
series of activities throughout the evening.

To tip off the night, Qatar Airways presented former Tuskegee Airman and President of the 369th
Regiment Sergeant (ret.) Willie Jackson, with a special game ball delivery. The evening also included an
on-court, around the world competition with an HBCU alumni, for the opportunity to win roundtrip tickets
to incredible Qatar Airways destinations. Additionally, the airline highlighted stories of seven Black
aviation pioneers throughout the arena during the night and distributed Black History Month themed rally
towels to the first 5,000 fans in attendance.

“Black History Month is a time of reflection and an important reminder of the work we have left to do,”
says Senior Vice President of the Americas Eric Odone. “At Qatar Airways, we are fortunate to have
opportunities to engage with the community, and we’re grateful that our partnership with the Brooklyn
Nets and Barclays Center allows us to take these educational commitments further.”
Leading up to Black History Month, in partnership with Qatar Airways, Nets player Nic Claxton visited the
Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum along with 20 children from United Youth Aviators. United Youth
Aviators is a specially-curated program that offers students from New York City the opportunity to learn
about aviation from an early age and ultimately how to fly a plane. Representatives from Qatar Airways
accompanied the group on their private tour around the museum, where they experienced the rich
aviation history and cultural significance.

The Doha-based airline also hosted the group from United Youth Aviators in a private suite at the Nets
game on February 3 where they participated in a Q&A session with Willie Jackson on his experience with
the Tuskegee Airmen. The children were also invited to stand on-court with Nets players during the
national anthem.

The month-long celebration of African American history is part of Qatar Airways’ corporate social
responsibility efforts aimed at building stronger communities and providing youth with meaningful
educational opportunities.

A multiple award-winning airline, Qatar Airways was named ‘World’s Best Airline’ by the 2019 World
Airline Awards, managed by Skytrax. It was also named ‘Best Airline in the Middle East’, ‘World’s Best
Business Class’, and ‘Best Business Class Seat’, in recognition of its ground-breaking Business Class
experience, Qsuite. It is the only airline to have been awarded the coveted ‘Skytrax Airline of the Year’
title, which is recognized as the pinnacle of excellence in the airline industry, a record five times.
Qatar Airways operates a modern fleet of more than 250 aircraft via its hub, Hamad International Airport
(HIA), to more than 160 destinations worldwide. The world’s fastest-growing airline added several new
destinations to its network last year, including Rabat, Morocco; Izmir, Turkey; Malta; Davao, Philippines;
Lisbon, Portugal; Mogadishu, Somalia; Langkawi, Malaysia; and Gaborone, Botswana. The airline will
add Santorini, Greece; Dubrovnik, Croatia; Osaka, Japan; Nur-Sultan and Almaty, Kazakhstan; Cebu,
Philippines; Accra, Ghana; Trabzon, Turkey; Lyon, France; Luanda, Angola; and Siem Reap, Cambodia,
to its extensive route network in 2020.

T.I. Launches Tech Cypha

This February, Hip-Hop Entrepreneurs are making black history by advancing the technology industry. Clifford Harris Jr, known as “T.I.,” launches a new syndicated investment vehicle called Tech Cypha with business partner Jason Geter and Brandon “BL” Lewis; son of late great boxing promoter and entrepreneur Butch Lewis. Leveraging technologies such as Airbnb, Lyft and Lime through the eyes of hip-hop culture, the team also launched a Los Angeles-based entertainment startup called Culture Genesis. Together, the new collaborative investment strategy allows high-net-worth individuals to participate in trending tech startup deals.

The strategy evolved when Geter and Harris made their first investment 12 years ago into a company called Streetcred.com, a site that allowed fans to go online and share opinions about street culture. While that first deal didn’t work out, Geter and Harris maintained interest in the technology and startup scene to create opportunities for their networks and promote new businesses.

“We learned a lot,” says Harris. “Now, we know where our demographic is.”

For Geter, that demographic is taking advantage of Atlanta’s surging position as a cultural and technological mecca in the United States. Indeed, Atlanta-area startups raised roughly $1.15 billion in 2018, a record for the region, according to data from PitchBook and the National Venture Capital Association.

“Being in the city of Atlanta and with Georgia Tech producing so much talent, and coming from us being within the hip-hop culture, which is always influencing and promoting things, we saw an opportunity,” says Geter. “In the past, we were always looking through the glass window and looking at ways we can participate earlier. And that’s by coming together to pool our resources so we can invest more.”

Through informed mentorship programs and partnerships, Tech Cypha will include using influencers in various fields. Currently, the syndicate includes Lil Duval, Killer Mike, Tamika ‘Tiny’ Harris, Tai Green, Korey Roberson, Stephanie Shirley, and BJ Kerr among others. As an industry leader, Lewis is known for his talent in branding, marketing and partnership deals.

“Often times, we drive technology like social media and apps, but we are never apart of the ownership,” Lewis continues, “Tech Cypha is going to be an investment vehicle looking for promising, early and late-stage startups to invest capital in, assist with marketing and give branding directions. It’s our way of bridging the gap between the culture and technology.”

Solange Highlight’s African American Disabilities

As we celebrate Black History Month, which takes place every February, RespectAbility recognizes the contributions made and the important presence of African Americans to the United States. It is important to note this includes more than 5.6 million African Americans living with a disability in the U.S., 3.4 million of which are working-age African Americans with disabilities. Therefore, we would like to reflect on the realities and challenges that continue to shape the lives of African Americans with disabilities. The full piece provides statistics relating to employment, education, criminal justice and more.

Some celebrities and business leaders are using their voice to share their stories, educating people about both visible and invisible disabilities. They are defying the statistics and have remained highly successful with their disabilities. These role models make a big difference in setting high expectations for youth with disabilities. RespectAbility will be sharing content throughout this month – and throughout the entire year – highlighting additional African Americans with disabilities, including some personal pieces from our own team members.     

INCREASING DISABILITY INCLUSION IN HOLLYWOOD

Maya Angelou, Legendary Poet and Civil Rights Activist Who Had Disability, Inspires Generations

– Tameir Yeheyes, RespectAbility Spring 2018 Fellow

Maya Angelou had selective mutism, an anxiety disorder that causes a child to not speak due to physical and psychological trauma they endured. In the five-year span that she experienced this, her listening, observing and memorizing skills improved and her love of books expanded. This helped her later when she began working in becoming successful in her career.

Halle Berry: Living with Disability While Taking a Stand against Domestic Violence

– Julia Wood, RespectAbility Fall 2017 Fellow

Halle Berry is an advocate for ending violence against women, an advocate for individuals with disabilities, and has been fighting for virtually her whole life.

Missy ‘Misdemeanor’ Elliott ‘Works it,’ Serves as Role Model for Young Women with Disabilities

– Julia Wood, RespectAbility Fall 2017 Fellow

At the height of her career, Missy Elliott experienced a dramatic and dangerous weight loss; she was diagnosed with Graves’ disease, which attacks the thyroid.

Deafblind Lawyer Haben Girma Advocates for Disability Rights

– Ryan Knight, RespectAbility Spring 2018 Fellow

The first Deafblind person to graduate from law school, Haben Girma stated that removing barriers for herself helped in her journey to becoming a disability advocate. Her disability advocacy is not restricted to education; she also uses the media to decrease the stigma in the community.

Whoopi Goldberg: Talented Actress, Comedienne and Talk Show Host Lives with Dyslexia

– Theresa Maher, RespectAbility Fall 2017 Fellow

Reading scripts and writing books as often as Goldberg does was hard at first with her dyslexia. Like she did in elementary school, Goldberg found it easiest to have someone read to her so she could memorize the lines for her scripts. For her books, she dictates instead of writing before sitting down with an editor to adjust the language.

Actress with Cerebral Palsy Diana Elizabeth Jordan is Veteran of 17 Shows, Shorts and Movies

– Theresa Maher, RespectAbility Fall 2017 Fellow

Diana Elizabeth Jordan, actress, writer, producer and director, is an important figure in the conversation about the inclusivity or lack thereof of people with disabilities in Hollywood. She found a way to get into and around Hollywood, with the help of her faith and self-confidence.

Solange Knowles: Role Model for African American Performers with Disabilities

– Bryan Munguia, RespectAbility Spring 2018 Fellow

When it comes to the traditional expectations of a pop star in Hollywood, Solange Knowles shatters the glass ceiling as a woman of color who also happens to be diagnosed with a disability that affects 10 percent of the U.S. population: ADHD. Knowles has been outspoken about her ADHD, educating people about her disability.

Jenifer Lewis of ‘Black-ish’ has Coped with Bipolar Disorder by Doing the Work

– Litsa Dremousis, The Washington Post

Jenifer Lewis resisted the diagnosis at first and refused to take medication until a self-described nervous breakdown left her convulsing in sobs, a hostage to her untreated neurochemistry. A quarter-century later, she is thriving and happy because, as she says, she “does the work.”

 

SambaFunk! Perform at Senator Kamala Harris for President 2020 Campaign Rally

Bay Area artscollective SambaFunk! performed Sunday, January 27th as part of the Senator Kamala Harris for President 2020 Campaign Rally in Oakland.

Theo Aytchan Williams, Samba Funk! Artistic Director said, “We are beyond honored to have been invited to participate in this historic moment in time by performing at the Senator Harris for President Campaign Rally.”

The group recently released a new version of the classic “Lift Every Voice & Sing” to coincide with Black History Month in February and to celebrate the song’s 120th Anniversary.

“Lift Every Voice and Sing” often referred to as the “Black National Anthem”, was originally written as a poem in 1899 by James Weldon Johnson to be recited by 500 students at the Stranton School in Jacksonville, Florida as a welcoming poem to educator Booker T. Washington in commemorate of Abraham Lincoln’s birthday. It was later put to music by John Rosamond Johnson and adopted as the Black National Anthem by the NAACP.

The SambaFunk! version of “Lift Every Voice & Sing” comes on the 120th anniversary of the song being written in hopes that the new release will shine a light on the Black Experience and ignite a sense of pride among Black and oppressed people worldwide. Historically music often plays a significant role in bringing people together for positive change. The group hopes this song evokes conversations between Americans of all backgrounds.

Williams said, “2019 is the perfect time for the message of this monumental work to be heard around the world to help raise our collective consciousness and present a living example of how music can play a significant role in unification.”

Many are already celebrating the song and its goodwill message including several NBA teams who will be performing the song as part of their Black History Month presentations.

Samba Funk! will also be seen in the EPIX documentary series, Elvis Goes There on February 11th with host film critic Elvis Mitchell, performing “Lift Every Voice & Sing”.

Mastered in the world-renowned Bernie Grundman studio in Hollywood, the song was released Martin Luther King Jr. weekend, January 20th and is available wherever music is sold and streamed.

To learn more about Samba Funk! and listen to “Lift Every Voice and Sing”, visit the website at sambafunk.com.

Future Black History

Fuse and FM commemorate Black History Month with a month-long, multiplatform celebration of Future Black History makers from the worlds of music, entertainment and social influence.

To kick off the month, Fuse, FM and the Fuse digital platforms will premiere exclusive short form video interviews with artists Kyle and Ty Dolla $ign exploring the future of black music history and showcasing the influences and inspirations of African American artists on the rise.

**Check out the Fuse YouTube channel to see what future black history means to rapper Kyle, the legacy he wants to create, and why watching P. Diddy dance empowers him.

Also this month, Fuse and FM will highlight established and emerging artists including Chance the Rapper, Ty Dolla $ign, Cardi B, Kendrick Lamar, Nicki Minaj, Alicia Keys and Solange with a Future Black History music block airing on FM on Friday, February 2 at 10 p.m. ET/ 7 p.m. PT and Fuse on Friday, February 9 at 9 a.m. ET/PT.

And the Fuse digital platforms keep the celebration going all month long, as Fuse honors superstar and rising musicians, film and TV stars, and creators with spotlight profiles, interviews, playlists, social-focused media and in-depth essays that highlight how and where these individuals are taking black history. This year’s honorees include SZA, Khalid, Cardi B and Lil Uzi Vert; must-know superstars of tomorrow like Daniel Caesar, Wizkid and Jorja Smith; actors and film stars changing Hollywood including Jordan Peele, Tiffany Haddish, Michael Che, Chadwick Boseman and Marsai Martin; and those creating must-know content and honoring their culture like Jay Versace, Jackie Aina, Amber Whittington, and Ayo & Teo.

This year’s honorees include SZA, Khalid, Cardi B and Lil Uzi Vert; must-know superstars of tomorrow like Daniel Caesar, Wizkid and Jorja Smith; actors and film stars changing Hollywood including Jordan Peele, Tiffany Haddish, Michael Che, Chadwick Boseman and Marsai Martin; and those creating must-know content and honoring their culture like Jay Versace, Jackie Aina, Amber Whittington, and Ayo & Teo.