Storytelling for Social Change: Lecture Honors Black History Month
February is Black History Month and is a time to reflect upon this national celebration of the contributions made by African Americans to our country and to the world. The history of African Americans is not limited to one month, however, and this is also a time to refocus and reflect on the accomplishments and continued work and struggles needed for social and racial justice. The responsibility for the eradication of racism and to embrace anti-racism, lies with each of us.
As the Associate Alumnae of Douglass College (AADC) continues to work towards an inclusive and equitable future, we honor the contributions of African Americans, our alumnae and friends. We value and appreciate Black history this month and all year.
The AADC is committed to supporting our Black alumnae as well as to creating platforms and sacred spaces to have the needed dialogue to educate, create awareness, expose barriers, implement change and lead through our actions and deeds. We are better together as we move forward together.
In honor of Black History Month, the AADC Black Alumnae Network (BAN) encourages our alumnae community and beyond to participate in the 2023 Virtual Zagoren Lecture, “Storytelling for Social Change: Stories of Justice and Joy for a More Just Future,” on February 22. Dr. Cierra Kaler-Jones ’15, pictured, who was named to Black Enterprise’s 40 Under 40 list for social impact, will deliver the lecture. She is Executive Director of Rethinking Schools and joins us to discuss the power of storytelling, in which she weaves examples from Black history with their relationship to navigating the present moment.
“The lecture will relate how sharing our own personal histories can impact today’s changing societies,” says BAN President Ruth Toni Howell Armstead ’74. “This subject is close to my heart, as I research family genealogy to discover and extend the stories of my own roots,” she continues. A dedicated volunteer for more than 40 years, Toni has hosted genealogy “how-to” sessions during AADC Alumnae Reunion Weekend activities.
The Zagoren Lecture is a free, virtual lecture open to our alumnae community, the Rutgers community, and the public. This annual lecture features an alumna and honors the late, long-time former AADC Executive Director Adelaide Marcus Zagoren ’40.