The History of the Black Rose Awards
San Bernardino, Calif. In 1926 Carter G. Woodson founded the first Black History Week, selecting the second week of February to commemorate the birthdays of Abraham Lincoln and Frederick Douglass, whose birthdays were the 12th and 14th, respectively. In the 1940s, efforts began to expand the week to a month, with West Virginia Blacks inaugurating the change.
Black History Month
Known then as Negro History Month, the expanded commemoration began to spread and by the mid-1960s had taken root in Chicago, where cultural activist Frederick H. Hammaurabi, who founded the Association for the Study of African American Life and History, made the change. Later in that decade, young Black college students all over the country (starting with Kent State in Ohio in February of 1969), who were becoming more politically conscious and active, began changing the name to Black History Month.
In 1974 then-President Gerald Ford met with civil rights leaders Vernon Jordan, Bayard Rustin, Dorothy Height, and Jesse Jackson and two years later made the celebration of Black History Month official. As he said at the time, “…we can seize the opportunity to honor the too-often neglected accomplishments of Black Americans in every area of endeavor throughout our history.”
As the Association for the Study of African American Life and History notes on its website about the adoption of Black History Month, “Since the mid-1970s, every American president, Democrat, and Republican, has issued proclamations endorsing the Association’s annual theme.”
Black Rose Awards
The Black Rose Awards are a complement to Black History Month. The awards are sponsored by the San Bernardino Black Culture Foundation, a nonprofit founded in 1968 by a small group of people who were concerned that, “…nationwide, our school systems have not yet incorporated Black history studies into regular school curriculums. Thus, all students miss the opportunity to learn more about a vital part of this country’s history.”
The Foundation’s purpose “…is to foster an interest and a greater understanding of African-American culture, to heighten community awareness of the accomplishments of Black people, past and present, and to plan, coordinate and direct an annual Black History Month parade and related cultural activities…[and] bridge the gaps that exist across cultural lines by bringing the local community together to celebrate this event in the spirit of unity and brotherhood.”
The Black Rose Awards are the Foundation’s showcase cultural event. The San Bernardino Black Culture Foundation’s 30th Black Rose Award Winners will be recognized at the annual banquet on Saturday, February 4, 2023, from 6:00 pm to 9:00 pm at the California State University, San Bernardino, Santos Manuel Student Union 5500 University Parkway.
Individual tickets are $75 each. For more information or to purchase tickets go to: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/30th-black-rose-awards-banquet-tickets-491089169927, or contact the Co-Chairs: Kristine Scott at (909) 809-0317 or firstname.lastname@example.org or Jim King at (760) 239-8200 or email@example.com.
Arlington Rodgers, President of the Foundation, said, “We are enthusiastically looking forward to this year’s Black History Month activities as we extend the hand of friendship and understanding to all ethnic groups throughout the Inland Empire.”
The Black Rose Awardees for 2023 are: Dr. Juanita H. Scott Humanitarian of the Year, Humanitarian of the Year to Rose Mayes, Executive Director Fair Housing Council of Riverside County; Black Rose Recipients are: Linda Wright, Moreno Valley Black Chamber of Commerce; Gloria Macias Harrison, President Emeritus, Crafton Hills College, San Bernardino Community College Board of Trustees; Deborah Robertson, Mayor of Rialto, Founder of The Women’s Conference; and the Jim King’s Black Rose Corporate Founder’s Award from Dignity Health—Community Hospital of San Bernardino: Administrators June Collison, President, Roz Nolan, Chief Nurse Executive Officer and Staff Dr. Ruby Skinner.