March 9, 2017 – Mayor Byron W. Brown today led a celebration of Black History Month during a noon time event in the lobby of City Hall. In his Mayoral Proclamation, the Mayor noted the theme of Black History Month 2017 is “Black Education.”
“This year’s theme examines the role that education has played in the history of African Americans from times of slavery, through the Civil War, to present day. History is full of examples of people overcoming arbitrary boundaries imposed on them. My administration is committed to clearing as many of those barriers as possible through several initiatives to ensure no one is left out or left behind on their path to education and employment,” Mayor Brown said.
Mayor Brown cited the City’s Summer Reading Rules Challenge, which has included 13,000 champion readers in the past 15 years; his administration’s steadfast support of the Say Yes Buffalo education initiative to which the City has contributed $1.3 million through 2016, which additional funds for 2017; Mayor Brown’s Summer Youth Employment Program, which has employed 22,000 youth, ages 14-21, since 2006, and new City of Buffalo Mentoring Program, through which city employees and community members will tutor Buffalo Public Schools students and serve as role models.
“I also announced in my State of the City Address last week the new $44 million WNY Training Center, which will anchor the Northland Corridor, will include a Coding School, to help local residents pursue careers in the burgeoning technology arena.”
The event also honored African-Americans for their exemplary community service in eight categories. The winners were:- Art – John Baker - Education – Eva Doyle - Youth – Daniel Robinson- Military & Law Enforcement – Chief Aaron Young
- Faith-based – Bishop Roderick Hennings- Community Service – Sheila Brown- Family – The Ingram Family- Health Care – Gina Davis
The event also featured poetry by Legendary and musical performances by saxophonist Will Holton. Holton closed out the program with “Lift Every Voice and Sing,” often referred to as the Black National Anthem. Liz Lewin, a News Reporter for WKBW-TV, was the emcee for the event.