Important Figures

Article titled Alice Coachman

Alice Coachman

On November 9, 1923 in Albany, Georgia, a baby girl was born to Fred and Evelyn Coachman.  The fifth of what would be their ten children, Alice grew into a youth who truly enjoyed sports.  Although she excelled in basketball, she was stel... Continue Reading
Article titled Shani Davis

Shani Davis

Shani Davis was born in Chicago, Illinois on August 13, 1982 to Cherie Davis and Reginald Shuck.  “Shani” was chosen by his father, who sourced an African name dictionary for guidance in giving his son a name of purpose.  Its origin i... Continue Reading
Article titled Kenneth B. Clark

Kenneth B. Clark

“Mr. Clark’s studies were widely credited with influencing the U.S. Supreme Court’s 1954 decision overturning racially segregated public schooling.” ~ Alan Richard, writer Kenneth Bancroft Clark was born on July 14, 1914 to Arthur Ban... Continue Reading
Article titled Mamie P. Clark

Mamie P. Clark

“Her career focused attention on the particular problems faced by minority youth, and her work ushered in new approaches to treatment and remains a landmark in the history of psychology.” ~ Encyclopedia of Arkansas In Hot Springs, Arkansa... Continue Reading
Article titled Jessye Norman

Jessye Norman

“Honestly, I can't think of a single other soprano or mezzo-soprano with anything remotely approaching her sound … It was almost like a wall of sound coming at us, but extremely beautiful and consistent.” ~ Renée Fleming, legendary sopra... Continue Reading
Article titled Chick Webb

Chick Webb

“The story of Chick Webb is more than the story of a dynamic drummer of the swing era. It’s the story of a gallant little man who overcame physical deformity, hardship and pain.  A man whose spirit, courage and determination was perha... Continue Reading
Article titled Ernest J. Gaines

Ernest J. Gaines

“… for his contributions as an author and teacher.  Drawing deeply from his childhood in the rural South, his works have shed new light on the African American experience and given voice to those who have endured injustice.” ~ President B... Continue Reading
Article titled Gloria Naylor

Gloria Naylor

“… I fell in love with the way (Gloria) Naylor wrote Black joy, pain, happiness, sadness, anxiety, depression, dancing, singing, fighting, love-making, and praying.  I loved the way she wrote Black women’s voices.  Their spirits.  Their so... Continue Reading
Article titled Kasi Lemmons

Kasi Lemmons

Karen “Kasi” Lemmons was born on February 24, 1961 in St. Louis, Missouri.  Her father, a biology teacher, and mother, a counselor and psychologist, divorced when she was eight years old.  Wanting to pursue a doctorate degree in educa... Continue Reading
Article titled Matty Rich

Matty Rich

“Matty has wonderful instincts, and that’s not a slight, that’s a compliment (to) someone who doesn’t have the breadth of experience or even the training …” ~ Paris Qualles, Screenwriter Born on November 26, 1971 in the Brooklyn b... Continue Reading