"No one can figure out your worth but you," inspiring words spoken by the legendary actress, entertainer and author Pearl Bailey. In 1976, she became the first black American to receive the Screen Actors Guild Life Achievement Award. She is best known for her title role in Hello Dolly, an all-black production, where she recieved a… Continue reading Pearl Bailey (1918 – 1990) Legendary Actress, Singer & Author
"Behind every sweet smile, there is a bitter sadness that no one can see and feel," truthful words spoken by actor, poet, activist and one of the most influential artists of all time, Tupac Shakur. With over seventy-five million records sold worldwide and a successful acting career, the legendary lyricist and visionary rose to fame in… Continue reading Tupac Shakur (1971 – 1996) Activist, Actor & Legendary Rapper
"My hair is an aesthetic choice. At the same time, how you wear your hair is a political statement as well," insightful words spoken by award-winning singer, songwriter and fashion icon Erykah Badu. She has been hailed as one of the most gifted rhythm and blues singers of the current era and has earned her title as… Continue reading Erykah Badu (1971 – ) Awarding Winning Singer & Songwriter
"Mass incarceration is the most pressing racial justice issue of our time," a declarative statement by the highly acclaimed civil rights lawyer, legal scholar, advocate and best selling author, Michelle Alexander. Best known for her groundbreaking book. The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness, she unveils the rebirth of the pervasive racial caste… Continue reading Michelle Alexander (1967 – ) Civil Rights Lawyer, Legal Scholar & Best Selling Author
“If you’re walking down the right path and you’re willing to keep walking, eventually you’ll make progress,” insightful words spoken by the 44th U.S. President, Barack Obama. Barack is the first Black American to assume the presidency in the United States and served two full terms from 2009 to 2017. Prior to becoming president, he served… Continue reading Barack Obama (1961 – ) First Black U.S. President, Author & Nobel Peace Prize Winner
“I want our young people to see this...a black woman on TV without fake hair, being Afrocentric and being myself,” daring words spoken by the best selling author and activist Shahrazad Ali. Shahrazad has written several books and is best known for her groundbreaking best-seller, The Blackman's Guide to Understanding the Blackwoman (1989). The book's… Continue reading Shahrazad Ali (1954 – ) Best Selling Author & Activist
"In recognizing the humanity of our fellow beings, we pay ourselves the highest tribute," powerful words spoken by civil rights attorney and the nation's first Black U.S. Supreme Court Justice, Thurgood Marshall. A towering figure and brilliant civil rights attorney, he used the power of the courts to fight racism and discrimination, to tear down… Continue reading Thurgood Marshall (1908 – 1993) Civil Rights Lawyer & The First Black U.S. Supreme Court Justice
"Don't count the days. Make the days count," profound words spoken by one of the greatest sports figures of all time, heavyweight champion boxer and activist, Muhammad Ali. Universally regarded as "The Greatest," he is the only fighter to win the heavyweight championship three times. His professional career spanned more than 2 decades, with 56… Continue reading Muhammad Ali (1942 – 2016) “The Greatest” Heavyweight Champion Boxer, Social Activist & Humanitarian
“Not everything that is faced can be changed, but nothing can be changed until it is faced,” brilliant words spoken by novelist, essayist, poet, public speaker, social activist and one of 20th century's greatest writers, James Baldwin. Whether he was working in Paris, New York or Istanbul, he never ceased to reflect on his experience… Continue reading James Baldwin (1924 – 1987) Best-Selling Author, Orator, Writer, Playwright & Civil Rights Activist
"You can't just sit there and wait for people to give you that golden dream. You've got to get out there and make it happen for yourself," a wise declaration spoken by the legendary world renowned singer & actress Diana Ross. She is best known as the lead singer of the sensational singing trio "The… Continue reading Diana Ross (1944 – ) Award-Winning Singer, Actress & Global Icon
“They’re gonna get these BARZ,” impenetrable words spoken by the incomparable, award winning spoken word artist, community activist, visual artist and entrepreneur, Jermaine "mainMAN" Monroe. Besides being a dope poet, mainMAN also known as Main, hosted a No.1 Hip-Hop Radio Talk Show "Radio Unfriendly." Crowned the Spoken Word Artist of the Year in 2019 and was… Continue reading Jermaine “mainMAN” Monroe (1971 – 2021) Award Winning Spoken Word Poet, Visual Artist, Hip-Hop Radio Talk Show Host, Community Builder & Renaissance Man
"Stop making excuses, you're the only one stopping you," powerful words spoken by Emmy nominated actress, director, producer and best-selling author Issa Rae. She is best known for the web series, Awkward Black Girl (2011) which later adapted into the popular TV series ‘Insecure’. She has appeared in many TV shows, such as ‘The Couple’,… Continue reading Issa Rae (1985 – ) Actress, Producer & Best Selling Author
"Before you can make a dream come true, you must first have one," profound words spoken by astronaut, physicist, martial artist, and saxophonist, Ronald McNair. He was the 2nd African American to travel to Space and was a 5th degree black belt Karate instructor, as well as, a performing jazz saxophonist. He also enjoyed running,… Continue reading Ronald McNair (1950 – 1986) NASA Astronaut, Physicist, Martial Artist, Saxophonist, 2nd African American to travel to Space
"When I look out at the people and they look at me and they're smiling, then I know that I'm loved. That is the time when I have no worries, no problems," genuine words spoken by legendary award winning singer and musical genre pioneer, Etta James. She is one of the most celebrated singers in… Continue reading Etta James (1938 – 2012) Grammy Award Winning Blues, Jazz & Soul Singer
"A book helps you to exercise your intelligence, but God gave you intelligence," powerful words spoken by holistic health pratictioner, scientist, author and world renown lecturer Dr. Llaila Oela Afrika. Best known for his book, “African Holistic Health”.Dr. Afrika was one of the world's foremost authorities on health and nutrition. He had over 50 years… Continue reading Dr. Llaila O. Afrika (1946 – 2020) Scholar, Lecturer, Scientist, Holistic Doctor, Author & Historian
“You can't argue with the universe,” powerful words spoken by the iconic singer, songwriter and musician, Chaka Khan. Known as the "Queen of Funk," her illustrious career has spanned nearly five decades. Her career took off in the 1970s as the lead vocalist of the funk band Rufus. She was the first R&B artist to have a crossover hit featuring rapper Melle Mel,… Continue reading Chaka Khan (1953 – ) Grammy Award-Winning Singer
"The only way to get a thing done is to start to do it, then keep on doing it, and finally you'll finish it," a prolific statement spoken by the poet, journalist, social activist, and leader of the Harlem Renaissance Langston Hughes. Langston is a world renowned poet who became the central figure of the… Continue reading Langston Hughes (1902 – 1967) Poet, Novelist, Activist, Playwright & Prominent Figure of the Harlem Renaissance
"Black people are achievers; we're survivors," a strong statement spoken by the multi-talented actress Roxie Roker. Known for her for groundbreaking role as Helen Willis on the popular TV sitcom The Jeffersons. She is the mother of rock musician Lenny Kravitz, grandmother of actress Zoe Kravitz and second cousin of news journalist Al Roker. Roxie… Continue reading Roxie Roker (1929 – 1995) Actress & Mother of Famed Musician Lenny Kravitz
"I refuse to take shortcuts," powerful words spoken famous NFL Quarterback and activist Colin Kaepernick. As a high profile quarterback, Colin played six seasons with the San Francisco 49ers. He became well known for protesting police brutality and racial injustice by kneeling and refusing to stand during the National Anthem. Colin's strong position against systematic… Continue reading Colin Kaepernick (1987 -) Professional Football Player, Athlete, & Activist
"The healing of a nation begins with oneself," profound words spoken by the honorable high priestess and wellness health coach Queen Afua. Queen Afua is an internationally renowned holistic health expert, best selling author, natural healer, holistic wellness entrepreneur, herbalist and a highly sought after holistic health practitioner dedicated to the healing of women's bodies… Continue reading Queen Afua (1953 – ) Best-Selling Author, Holistic Healer, Herbalist, Lecturer & Khamitic (Kemetic) Priestess
"Let the electric energy of life, flow through thee, in miraculous attunement to thy almighty creator, thy higher self" -a powerful declaration by living foods chef, scientist, alchemist, master astrologer, natural healer and legend Artis Hinson, who is the owner of Body Ecology Life Sciences Attunement Center and the author of "Dogma To Light." Artis… Continue reading Artis E. Hinson (1944 – 2021 ) Herbalist, Natural Healer, Master Astrologer, Author, Legend & Owner of Body Ecology Life Sciences Attunement Center
"I feel that it is healthier to look out at the world through a window than through a mirror. Otherwise, all you see is yourself and whatever is behind you," poetic words spoken by the legendary icon Bill Withers, who wrote and sang a host of soulful songs in the 1970's that have stood the… Continue reading Bill Withers (1938 – 2020) Singer, Songwriter & Guitarist
"I do not weep at the world I am too busy sharpening my oyster knife," profound words spoken by the lengendary author, poet, playwright and filmaker, Zora Neale Hurston. Her literary works often portrayed the racial struggles in the early-1900s rooted in the deep south. In addition, she was a pioneer researcher on the subject… Continue reading Zora Neale Hurston (1891 – 1960) Author, Playwright Poet & Filmaker
"As an African-American actor, a lot of our stories haven't been told," words by the great actor Chadwick Boseman, best known for his role as T'Challa in Marvel's mega hit movie "Black Panther." He also played groundbreaking figures like James Brown, Jackie Robinson and Thurgood Marshall, becoming one of the most sought-after leading men in… Continue reading Chadwick Boseman (1976 – 2020) Actor, Director, Writer, Producer & Playwright
"You have to be taught to be second class, you're not born that way," a profound statement by the ultra-talented singer, actress, activist Lena Horne. Lena Horne is known as one of the most famous black entertainers of the twentieth century, who broke new ground for black performers when she signed a long-term contract with… Continue reading Lena Horne (1917 – 2010) Singer, Dancer, Actress, and Civil Rights Activist
“I feel like Harriet Tubman, except I am trying to free people through underground music, to free themselves creatively and inspirationally.” -Janelle Monáe
"I come from a long line of storytellers"
"We should always be aspiring to know more, and to better ourselves, and to improve ourselves. To improve ourselves, because that's how we improve the world around us, by working within us," profound words spoken by the unparalleled, ultra-talented, matchless beauty Lauryn Hill. A former member of the hip hop trio The Fugees, Lauryn went… Continue reading Lauryn Hill (1975 – ) Award Winning Singer, Rapper, Actress, & Songwriter
"We're the only people on this entire planet who have been taught to sing and praise our demeanment. 'I'm a bitch. I'm a hoe. I'm a gangster. I'm a thug. I'm a dog.' If you can train people to demean and degrade themselves, you can oppress them forever. You can program them to kill themselves… Continue reading Dr. Frances Cress Welsing (1935 – 2016) Scholar, Psychiatrist, Lecturer, & Author
"You owe it to yourself to live beautifully. And I am," says the sultry songstress, actress, and model Jill Scott. This Grammy Award winner, has been on a fast track to music success every since her debut album released in 2000, reaching platinum. She has earned numerous accolades in music and is has also appeared… Continue reading Jill Scott (1972 – ) Award winning Singer, Actress, Poet & Songwriter
“I wish you power that equals your intelligence and your strength. I wish you success that equals your talent and determination. And I wish you faith," poetic words spoken by nurse, civil rights activist, and famed wife of legendary civil rights leader Malcolm X, Betty Shabazz. ReCreate Model: Darlene McClinton ReCreate Photographer: Jasmine Y. Mallory… Continue reading Betty Shabazz (1934 – 1997) Nurse, Educator, Civil Rights Advocate, & wife of Malcolm X
"It's been a long time coming. But I know a change is gonna come," those famous melodic words ascended off the lips of the #1 soul artist of the 1960s Sam Cooke. Commonly referred to as the man who invented soul, Sam is honored in the Rock-N-Roll Hall of Fame, Songwriter's Hall of Fame, received… Continue reading Sam Cooke (1931 – 1964) Singer, Songwriter, Civil Rights Activist
“In a racist society it is not enough to be non-racist, we must be anti-racist," unmitigated words uttered by political activist, master scholar, and author Angela Davis. She is a professor emerita at the University of California, who studied at Sorbonne. She was known as a radical feminist, a member of the Communist Party USA, and an affiliate of… Continue reading Angela Davis (1944 – ) Political Activist, Author, & Scholar
“A man who stands for nothing will fall for anything," powerful words spoken by the honorable Malcolm X, black leader, activist, and former national representative for the Nation of Islam, a black Muslim organization. Malcolm X, who later went by the name el-Hajj Malik el-Shabazz, was a well spoken, forthright, prominent figure for the black power movement, promoting ideals of black empowerment, self preservation, cooperative economics, human rights, and justice.
"It is our duty to fight for our freedom. It is our duty to win. We must love and protect one another. We have nothing to lose but our chains."
Since the 1960's, Assata Olugbala Shakur has been fighting for the liberation of the racially oppressed. Ironically, it is the same oppression that has caused her to become the first female ever to be added to the FBI's America's Most Wanted Terrorist List. Political activist, former member of the Black Panther Party and Black Liberation Army, and step-aunt to slane hip-hop artist Tupac Shakur, her story is deeply cloaked in the struggle for systemic change.
We pay our R-E-S-P-E-C-T to the singer, songwriter, pianist, Civil Rights Activist, Aretha Franklin, who will forever be hailed as the Queen of Soul. She was the first female inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and her magnanimous voice was declared a “Natural Resource” in the State of Michigan. An artist of prodigious versatility, her powerful vocal ranges stemmed from her early gospel roots, although she swiftly moved on to embrace Jazz, Soul, Classical, and R&B. Rolling Stone Magazine ranked her as the greatest singer of all time.