Emory Report
March 16, 2009
Volume 61, Number 23



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March 16
, 2009
‘Herstories’ celebrate leadership legacy

By Kim Urquhart

The National Black Herstory Task Force’s annual celebration of black womanhood, set for March 26-29, is a highlight of Emory’s month-long observance of Women’s History Month.

The 12th Annual National Black Herstory Conference and Awards Banquet, “Women in Action: Leaders, Activists and Heroines,” will recognize the legacies of women considered leaders, activists and heroines and their supportive allies throughout the African diaspora. International perspectives of African woman and the different gender roles of uniquely diverse cultures will also be explored.

The annual conference is an opportunity for the community to learn real stories about women of color in an environment designed to promote sharing of stories, education and understanding, says task force president Mozella Galloway, an information analyst in the School of Medicine.

“We believe that education is the key to removing misconceptions, stereotyping, racism and sexism,” says Galloway, who co-founded the nonprofit cultural and educational organization at Emory in 1997 to celebrate and chronicle the lives of women of African descent and their alliances.

Presented by Emory faculty and other scholars, activists and special guests, conference session topics range from women’s leadership at Emory to the story of the Gullah/Geechee Nation told through film and its chief priestess.

The programming is designed to attract academics, as well as professionals, students and members of the community, says Galloway. In its 12th year, the goal was to make this year’s conference more interactive. Selected participants will be charged with sharing the “herstory” of the outstanding leaders, activists and heroines recognized at the event, and seeking out similar stories when they return to their communities.

Ms. Black Georgia USA will preside over the 12th Annual Awards Banquet Saturday, March 28. Among the notable women to be honored are Emory’s Donna Wong, director of the Office of Multicultural Programs and Services with The National Black Herstory Comrade Salute Award; Emory Police Lieutenant Cheryl Elliott with the National Black Herstory Certificate of Appreciation; and Law Lecturer Kathleen Cleaver with The National Black Herstory Auset Award.

Drawing the events to a close on Sunday, March 29 will be an interfaith church service, led by Candler School of Theology Dean Jan Love.

Stories collected at this conference will become part of the task force’s growing research collection, which Galloway hopes eventually to house in a research library and cultural arts center.

Emory students, faculty and staff may attend conference sessions free with ID. A dinner ticket is required to attend the awards banquet. Visit www.blackherstory.org for details and full conference schedule.