A nonprofit publication of the Kentucky Center for Public Service Journalism

Centre College Black History Month programming to include keynote event with Stacey Abrams

Centre College will host two powerful virtual events as part of the College’s Black History Month celebration, spotlighting the various pathways to success that have been forged and navigated within the Black community. Pathways to Diversity Event Hosted by the Office of Diversity and Inclusion and the Grace Doherty Library Tuesday, Feb. 23 at 7 p.m, live on Zoom (registration required) Centre’s...

Murray State senior employs music to teach Paducah elementary students about Black History Month

Murray State University student Grayson Martin has taken a unique approach to teaching students at Paducah’s Lone Oak Elementary about Black History Month. While completing his student teaching requirement this semester, the senior music education major has incorporated the work of African-American artists, traditional instruments and games into his third-grade curriculum. Grayson Martin (Photo...

Billy Reed: Black History Month perfect time to remember the 1963 boys’ state basketball tournament

Black History Month is the perfect time to remember the 1963 Kentucky Boys’ State High School Basketball Tournament because that’s the one that changed the sport forever and had an impact on society as a whole that many in the Commonwealth either didn’t notice or purposely ignored. The tournament in Louisville’s Freedom Hall took place nine years after U.S. Supreme Court had rendered its historic...

Constance Alexander: Challenger anniversary invites study and reflection on events from the past

Those of us who tuned in remember the moment the Challenger exploded. Liftoff was 11:38 a.m., eastern time, January 28, 1986. Although not much of a space enthusiast, my interest was sparked by the Challenger. Like millions of others, I was taken by Christa McAuliffe, the science teacher who was part of the seven-person crew. Her enthusiasm, her infectious smile, the joy she brought to a perilous task...

Owens speaks of ‘road to reconciliation’ at Campbellsville’s Black History Month service

Dr. Joseph L. Owens, the pastor of Shiloh Baptist Church of Lexington and a Campbellsville University trustee and graduate, recently spoke at the Black History Month chapel service on campus. “The road to reconciliation is a way to release resentment,” Owens said at the service recognizing and celebrating Black History Month. “Black history continues to be a part of what happens,” Owens said...

Aaron Thompson: Black History Month is urgent reminder to close Kentucky’s achievement gaps

Every February, we celebrate Black History Month because of the efforts of a Berea College graduate, Carter G. Woodson. Woodson was a prominent African American scholar and historian who started his higher education career as a part-time student at Berea. From there, he went on to receive degrees from the University of Chicago and, in 1912, a doctorate from Harvard University, only the second person...

Kentucky by Heart: George Wright grew up poor but he listened when his mother said ‘no excuses’

By Steve Flairty KyForward Columnist When George Wright was growing up in poverty in Lexington over 50 years ago, he felt like he was living in shame and didn’t want others to know about it. It got worse when his parents divorced. His grades were bad, even though he had a good mind. “I always acted real out-going and was a show-off,” said George. “I didn’t let people know of the hurt in my...

Angela Crenshaw: Dr. J. Blaine Hudson’s popular ‘Ancestry’ topic a Black History Month legacy

“I am a part of all that I have met; Yet all experience is an arch wherethro’ Gleams that untravell’d world whose margin fades For ever and forever when I move. How dull it is to pause, to make an end, To rust unburnish’d, not to shine in use!” — From “Ulysses” by Alfred, Lord Tennyson, 1833, an excerpt from one of Dr. Blaine Hudson’s favorite poems. Angela Crenshaw...

This week at the Capitol: Honoring Charles Young during Black History month, bills advance

By Robert Weber Legislative Research Commission Highlights of the legislative week typically occur in the historic Senate and House chambers, but this past week the Capitol Rotunda was the scene of an unforgettable moment for many in the statehouse. Those attending the annual Black History Celebration, hosted by the Black Legislative Caucus, recognized a military hero who achieved great success but...

Kentucky’s Muhammed Ali Center, SEEK Museum become newest additions to U.S. Civil Rights Trail

In recognition of Black History Month, Governor Andy Beshear and Tourism, Arts and Heritage Cabinet Secretary Mike Berry announced today that Kentucky will now be home to the newest sites on the historic the U.S. Civil Rights Trail. The Muhammad Ali Center in Louisville and the SEEK Museum in Russellville mark the latest additions to the U.S. Civil Rights Trail making Kentucky home to 5 sites on the...

Lextran Kicks off Black History Month with reserved seat on each bus in honor of Rosa Parks

Lextran is kicking off Black History Month with a reserved seat on each bus honoring Rosa Parks through Friday, February 7. The reserved seats feature a poster with a picture of Parks as well as a QR code, courtesy of the Lexington Public Library, which will direct riders to adult, young adult, and children’s books about Parks. The poster also includes a brief explanation of the reserved seat. ...

EKU’s 2018-19 Chautauqua series to explore theme ‘Truths and Consequences’ through nine lectures

The 2018-19 Chautauqua series at Eastern Kentucky University will explore the theme “Truths and Consequences” through nine lectures by many internationally prominent authors, artists and experts; a special documentary screening; and a nationwide juried art exhibition. “The Chautauqua Committee discussed many potential themes this year, but above all, what emerged was everyone’s concern with...

Longtime Kentucky legislators honored during Black History Month celebration at state capitol

Three longtime members of the Kentucky General Assembly were honored for their years of service and dedication to the Commonwealth of Kentucky and its citizens at the 15th annual Black History Month Celebration in the Capitol Rotunda. Dr. M. Christopher Brown II, president of Kentucky State University, was the keynote speaker. Senator Gerald Neal, D-Louisville, presented the 2018 Legacy Achievement...

Former Attorney General Eric Holder shares experiences with University of Kentucky law students

By Whitney Harder Special to KyForward Much like University of Kentucky College of Law students, former U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder, the first African American to hold that office, saw law as a way to make an impact. “Through law and working through the system I thought I could be a force for change,” he said Tuesday evening on campus. Holder spoke to a crowd of UK students, faculty,...

Stage, screen star Ben Vereen celebrates Black History month with public events at Norton Center

Centre College’s Norton Center for the Arts welcomes legendary stage and screen actor Ben Vereen to Newlin Hall for two days of free activities in celebration of Black History month that will culminate with a public performance of Steppin’ Out with Ben Vereen on Saturday, Feb. 18 at 8 p.m. Filled with song and dance, stories of his life and a great deal of humor, the production brings together...

Activist Blair Imani keynote speaker on Feb. 1 as U of L marks opening of Black History Month

The University of Louisville will mark Black History Month with several public programs. All events are free unless otherwise noted. · Feb. 1 – a black history celebration and keynote address by Blair Imani, an activist for black, Muslim and femme communities and executive director of Equality for HER. The 6 p.m. program in Strickler Hall’s auditorium begins with music by UofL’s Black...

University Press of Kentucky offers wide range of options for Black History Month reading

As the nation celebrates Black History Month, many readers will be looking to learn more about the nation’s diverse past. The University Press of Kentucky (UPK) has a great selection of books to choose from, including three new publications for those interested in African-American history, “In Peace and Freedom: My Journey in Selma,” “James and Esther Cooper Jackson: Love and Courage...

Old Time Kentucky: Andy Smith’s long-delayed Medal of Honor was a wrong that was righted

By Berry Craig KyForward columnist Andrew Jackson Smith saw the color-bearer die with Old Glory in his grasp. A Kentuckian who escaped slavery in Lyon County, “Andy” Smith grabbed the battle flag. Waving the Stars and Stripes over his head, the 21-year-old Union soldier charged the Rebel foe. Smith’s bravery in the Civil War earned him the Medal of Honor, his country’s highest military decoration....

Special UK Alumni Association display celebrates legacies of first African-American students

At 19, he began college at the University of Kentucky, like many who came before and many who followed him. But that’s where the similarities between John Wesley Hatch and any other UK student end. It was 1948 and because of the Day Law, which prohibited different races from attending school together, Hatch wasn’t allowed on campus. In an arrangement with UK, he was admitted into the UK...

Celebrating Black History: Co-authors of Kentucky African American Encyclopedia honored at Capitol

Dr. Gerald Smith, Karen Cotton McDaniel and Dr. John A. Hardin, co-editors of the Kentucky African American Encyclopedia, were recipients of the 2016 Legacy Award at the 13th annual Black History Month Celebration at the Kentucky State Capitol in Frankfort. This year’s event, hosted by the Kentucky Black Legislative Caucus, focused on the theme “The Unfinished Business of Kentucky: ‘Symbolism...