Friday, February 17, 2012

Black History Month 2012 Remarks by Ambassador Robin Renee Sanders

@UNACA-Africare Event 4 Rep Barbara Lee&Rosa Whitaker CEO Whitaker Group

"African American Women in Global Affairs, Culture and History"

Thursday, February 16, 2012
6:00 – 8:30 p.m.

Welcome to this joint United Nations Association of the Capital Area (UNA-NC) -Africare Event. On behalf of Africare’s President Darius Mans, myself – the international affairs advisor, and Dr. Cynthia Carter, Chief Development Officer it is a pleasure to have you at Africare House. Africare would like to thank the United Nations Association of the National Capital Area, its president, Karen Mulhauser, and all of its members who dedicate their time and effort in advocacy for and educating about the United Nations and for its leadership in bringing all of us together this evening for this wonderful 2012 Black History event.

Let me just say a few words about Africare, although most of you are friends and know our dedication and history, but it is especially noteworthy during this Month – Black History Month (BHM) – which highlights the history of a people and provides a national platform for all of us to showcase what African-Americans continue to contribute to this great land of America, and our national fabric. You know Martin Luther King, Jr. talked about the “mutuality of inclusivity” – meaning that we are all connected, interdependent, and to use a techno phrase of today link-in®, to each other as people, as nations, and as organizations.

The UNA-CA and Africare share these same elements in common. Africare has dedicated 41 years in support of the people of Africa through it various programs in agriculture, health, water and sanitation with a specific focus on women and women’s leadership, the later point – women’s leadership - brings us to the theme of our program today. This evening we will honor two-dynamic, dedicated, and demonstrative women leaders, who are also both advocates, and trailblazers – the Honorable Congresswoman Barbara Lee of the 9th District of California, and Ms. Rosa Whitaker, CEO and President of the Whitaker Group, who has been a dear friend of mine for many years.

In this 86th year of celebrating the contributions of African Americans -- as this seminal activity began in 1926 as Negro History Week, and was changed to Black History Month in 1976 -- it gives both the UNA-CA and Africare the great pleasure to recognize two incredible African-American women leaders who are both symbolic and illustrative of the sentiments of BHM month – which calls for us to “honor the accomplishments of Black Americans in every endeavor [of life] throughout our history,” and I would add in our present.

This evening’s program begins with a welcome by UNA-CA President Karen Mulhauser & Africare’s own Dr. Cynthia Carter. Their remarks will be followed by an MLK Tribute by Howard Professor Dr. Anita Nahal, then presentations to our honorees, a befitting musical tribute by Ms. Loide Jorge, and closing remarks and vote of thanks respectively by Recardo Gibson and Abioye Oyewole.