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Uncovering the Origins of Black History Month

Black History Month wouldn’t have been possible without Negro History Week’s creation in the United States in 1926. Famous historian Carter G. Woodson and the Association for the Study of Negro Life and History proclaimed the second week of February to be observed as Negro History Week.

Black History Month, which is celebrated each year during February, is a chance for Americans to learn details of their nation’s history that, unfortunately, are far too often neglected and pushed to the wayside. As the saying goes, Black history is American history — and it’s a varied and rich history. A wise nation honors and learns from its past. It refuses to let the most important facts about our shared and collective memory disappear into the depths of forgotten history. What happened in the past shapes and informs where we are heading in the future, and it’s of paramount importance to set aside a month for learning as much as we can about Black history.

Kayla Robinson

Is a director, writer and artist from San Antonio, Texas. Within film-making she holds the unique perspective of client, crew and talent. Her career began as an art director in NY and California developing award-winning ads for top brands like Apple and Snickers. Worlds began to collide when colleagues would regularly request her for voice and on-camera roles thus beginning her career as a commercial actor and model. Kayla further developed her craft studying at the American Conservatory Theater and Berkeley Repertory Theater. She made her film debut as “Ayla” in Last Chance Charlene.Passionate about capturing authentic human experiences, Kayla harnesses vulnerability as a superpower. Her directorial debut, Ball is Ball, has received high praise for its honest portrayal of PTSD in trauma survivors. Her latest film, Quilted Education, celebrating her mother’s artistry and drive to keep Black History alive through quilting, has its world premiere at the 2022 Austin Film Festival.

She will present her short film, featuring her mother’s story of teaching Black History through quilting, “Quilted Education.”
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Damien D. Smith

Stage and television credits include the NAACP Theater Award-winning production of “12×9,” and most recently the television series “Snowfall” on Fx Networks and “The Purge”on USA networks. His directorial debut short narrative film entitled ABOUT THAT…, a powerful look at love through the eyes of a mentally disturbed young man won the Arts with Impact film Award. Smith’s last short film Daddy’s Big Girl won the Gentleman Jack Daniel’s Reel to Real Filmmaker of the Year Awards. In 2021 he won Best Documentary Film at NYC’s URBAN WORLD FILM FESTIVAL for his “Target St. Louis Volume 1.”

He will present his newest short film which is a historic and current exploration of the heavy social, economic and health implications that many Black Women face regarding their hair : “Free to be Free: How God Created Us”

Get Your Tickets

Tuesday, February 28, 6:30-9:00pm PST
Chan Zuckerberg Initiative, 801 Jefferson Ave., Redwood City, CA 94063
Buy Tickets $10
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