Black History Month: February 2022

To recall and celebrate the positive contributions to our nation made by people of African descent, American historian Carter G. Woodson established Black History Week beginning on Feb. 12, 1926. In 1976, as part of the nation's bicentennial, the week was expanded into Black History Month.

TODAY'S SPOTLIGHT ON RUSSELL SIMMONS

Russell Simmons, co-founder of Def Jam Recordings, Simmons launched the careers of the Beastie Boys, LL Cool J, Run-DMC, and Public Enemy, to name a few. In 1992 he founded his clothing label, Phat Farm, and later his wife's line, Baby Phat. In addition, his empire includes Rush Communications — the largest black-owned music business in the U.S., his movie production company Def Pictures, the Def Con 03 energy drink, the Hip Hop Summit Action Network and an advertising agency, while the Rush Philanthropic Arts Foundation brings arts education to inner-city kids. He is also majority shareholder of the website Global Grind. Russell is worth $340 million.

TRIVIA:

Born: October 4, 1957 in Queens, New York Co-founded Def Jam Recordings with Rick Rubin in 1984. Married Kimora Lee Simmons in St. Barths in 1998. They announced their separation in 2006 and were divorced in 2009. They have two kids, Ming Lee and Aoki Lee. Oldest brother of the rapper Run, Joseph Simmons, a.k.a. 'Run' of Run-DMC. Passed up on signing Madonna to his label in the early 80s. Russell Simmons is vegan, meaning that not only is he a vegetarian, but he doesn't consume any animal products at all. Attended City College of New York. In 2003, Def Jam took in almost $200 million in receipts. (Source: Imdb.com)

PERSONAL QUOTES:

On doing good: “If you give a good thing to the world, then over time your karma will be good, and you'll receive good.” On getting results: “Most people believe that results matter. The idea that results matter is one that you have to keep letting go of. And most of the time, I believe it.” On the company you keep: “Surround yourself with people who are smarter than you. Pick people who are interested in what you're interested in.” On giving: “As I get, I give. Giving as you get is critical. It has everything to do with being happy for yourself, and making others happy is the cause of making yourself happy, and it's the cycle of giving and getting.” On the keys to being successful: “Respect your parents. What they tell you is true. Hard work, dedication and faith will get you anything. Imagination will drive itself. You can get anything you want, but you have to have faith behind all your ideas. Stick to your goals and have an undying faith.”

BLACK HISTORY MONTH QUESTION OF THE DAY:

Hiram Revels, the first African-American U.S. senator, took his oath of office on which date?

A. May 6, 1935 B. February 25, 1870 C. January 11, 1910

The answer is B: February 25, 1870.

TODAY IN BLACK HISTORY:

In 1841, Grafton Tyler Brown, lithographer and painter, was born. In 1888, In West Chester, Pennsylvania, African-American painter Horace Pippin was born. Pippin was considered one of the major American painters of his period. One of his more significant works, “John Brown Going To His Hanging,” is owned by the Pennsylvania Academy Of Fine Arts. In 1898, a black postmaster was lynched and his wife and three daughters shot and maimed for life in Lake City, South Carolina. In 1911, Activist and social reformer Frances Ellen Watkins Harper died in her home in Philadelphia. Harper founded the National Convention Of Colored Women in 1864 and was involved in other projects for women's rights.

BLACK HISTORY MONTH FACT OF THE DAY:

In 1940, Hattie McDaniel was the first African-American performer to win an Academy Award for her portrayal of a loyal slave governess in Gone With the Wind.

BLACK HISTORY MONTH SPOTLIGHT: ANDREW BO YOUNG III

Andrew Bo Young III is making black history by changing the way we give back. Andrew, 38, is the CEO of Givelocally.net — a website that helps everyday Americans get their basic needs met. The site pre-screens and posts the needs of Americans on the site and gives users a chance to search by the type of need, family, state and donate money to help. The site was created in 2010.

null

BLACK HISTORY MONTH EXTRAS

Russell Simmons on “How to Build a Brand and Media Empire”: