Years ago, when I moved to Los Angeles to attend college at the University of California Los Angeles (UCLA) I was introduced to an organization called, “Our Authors Study Club.” Over the years I’ve had the privilege of being associated with them in various capacities and a couple of years ago I was even honored by them. Originally, I was drawn to them because of their name. At the time I was not an author and didn’t even know I would become one, but there was something about their name that spoke to me. After I became more familiar with their mission and realized they are affiliated with the Association for the Study of African American Life and History (ASALH), it became clear to me why I had such a fascination with them because of my love for history and especially our history.
In continuing with the celebration of Women’s History Month, I wanted to shed some light on the work Our Authors Study Club continues to do in our community. I salute those women who have been committed to the work and mission of the group and have made sacrifices over the years to keep it going. Sometimes we forget about the quiet sheroes that work behind the scenes, not for fame or fortune, but because they are committed to a work and cause. Women such as Mordena Moore, Sandra Evers-Manly, Berlinda Fontenot-Jamerson, Charisse Bremond-Weaver, Dr. Toni-Mokjaeti Hume, Ernestine Gordon and the late Dr. Genevieve Shepherd to name a few. Thank you, ladies, for your commitment to keeping our history and legacy alive.
The organization holds several events and activities throughout the year, especially during February when the country celebrates Black History Month; however, this month they will hold their Dr. Carter G. Woodson (founder of ASALH) Scholarship and Awards Luncheon. This event really speaks to me because they will be presenting several youth with scholarships to help them continue their education after high school. Forgiving For Living, Inc., (the organization I founded in 1999 to help girls by teaching them necessary life skills and providing mentorship) supports them in this effort. Not only will they be presenting scholarships to our youth, but they will also be honoring several individuals from the community. The theme this year is, “Community Icons.” One of their awardees is Pamela Bakewell who wears many hats. She is Chief Operating Officer/EVP at the Bakewell Company/Los Angeles Sentinel and she is committed to keeping the legacy alive of the family nonprofit, Sabriya’s Castle. She truly represents the definition of being a community icon.
Keeping everything in the community, the luncheon will be held at the Museum of African American Art at the Baldwin Hills Crenshaw Plaza inside Macy’s on the third floor. They will also have live entertainment during the event. Lena Horne said, “it's not the load that breaks you down, it's the way you carry it.” As women (and as a people) history has shown that when we try to do things by ourselves, we are prone to fail, but when we come together and help each other we are more likely to succeed. We don’t have to carry the concerns of the world (or our community) by ourselves. Let’s come together and support our young people, as well as our community icons that make a difference in our society every day. I hope to see you there on Saturday, March 16th!
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