AfroAmerica Network
Person of the Year Series
December 15, 2013

Jakaya Mrisho Kikwete AfroAmerica Network Black Man of 2013 

BarackObamaJakayaKikweteSep242013-300x199Jakaya Mrisho Kikwete, the President of the United
Republic of Tanzania is considered as one of the
most in?uential among the current African leaders. In
fact, along with Angolan President Jose Eduardo Dos
Santos and  South African President Jacob Zuma,
Jaya Kikwete is perhaps the most important president
of modern day Black Africa.  The three presidents
have become the wise people the international
community consults before any major action
regarding Central, Eastern and Southern Africa. In 2013, Jakaya Kiwete has become the center  of the World attention, and has left a mark on the continent and the international community.

12 Years A Slave: A Movie I invite Everyone to Watch; A Journey of Overcoming, Hope, and Optimism, and To Freedom

Today, I watched the movie “12 Years a Slave: The Extraordinary True Story of Solomon Northup”. I can’t find words to describe the experience of watching the movie, directed by Steve McQueen, which is based on the true story from the 1853 autobiography Twelve Years a Slave by Salomon Northup, a free black man who was kidnapped in Washington, D.C. in 1841 and sold into slavery. It is the first time that I watch a movie and hear so many moviegoers cry and sob. When the movie ended, I realized how many people in the

 The modern Olympic Games were launched in 1896. However, the first Afro to win a medal is  George Poage.     In 1904, George Poage  won third place in both 200-meter and 400-meter hurdles. He attended the University of Wisconsin. Since then, scores of afros have excelled in Olympic Games.

Sidney Poitier receiving Medal of Honor from US President Barack Obama, in 2009

Sidney Poitier, a legendary Black actor and civil rights activist has passed away in Los Angeles, CA on January 6, 2022. He was 94 years old.
His death was confirmed by the office of the prime minister of the Bahamas. Sidney Poitier  was  the first Black man even to win a Best Actor Oscar.  Sidney Poitier,  whose parents hailed from the Bahamas, was also known for being the most prominent, if not the only representative of African-Americans in mainstream cinema during the tumultous period of the American Civil Rights movement.

Homer Plessy vs Ferguson Marker in Lousiana

On Wednesday, January 5, 2022, Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards issued a pardon for civil rights activist Homer Plessy, 130 years after his arrest, trial and conviction, for protesting against racism. Homer Plessy's landmark case, Plessy v. Ferguson, was appealed all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court, where all White judges ruled in a 7-1 majority against him, reinforcing the racist "separate but equal" doctrine in the U.S and setting the foundation of the Jim Crow regime in the US southern states.

Archbishop Desmond Tutu

Nobel Prize Laureate, Freedom struggle icon and Leader in the South African Council of Churches Archbishop Desmond Mpilo Tutu has died on December 26, 2021. He was 90 years old. Archbishop Desmond Tutu is considered as one of African freedom heroes for the  struggle against apartheid , corruption, dictatorship, and kleptocracy. 

General Colin Luther Powell in 2000s

General Colin Luther Powell, one of the most prominent Black US military and political figures has passed away. He was 84 years old.
According to the statement from his family, he died from COVID-19 complications. General Colin Powell is well known for his firsts as a Black African American: first US Black National Security Adviser, fist Black Secretary of State, and the youngest and Black Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. Colin Powell, a long-time republican, was also known for endorsing the fist Black President Barack Obama, a democrat, and in the process, declining to run for president himself despite pressures from his party and republican supporters and instead endorsing other candidates, mostly democrats.

Rapper and Pop Culture Star Biz Markie, 2017

Marcel Theo Hall, known professionally as Biz Markie, was a pop culture star.  He died on July 16, 2021 in Baltimore, MD, USA. He was 57 years old An AfricanAmerican rapper, he was also a renown DJ, record producer, writer, singer, actor, and comedian.

Cardinal Laurent Monsengwo Pasinya, 2018

Cardinal Laurent Monsengwo Pasinya, the leader of the Roman Catholic Church in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) died on Sunday, July 11 in Paris, France. He was 81 years old.  Cardinal Laurent Monsengwo Pasinya, known to be close proche du Pope François, was a tireless fighter for peace in his country.

Zaila Avant-Garde Win Scripps National Spelling Bee, July 8, 2021

Zaila Avant-Garde, 14 years old,  won the Scripps National Spelling Bee Championship on Thursday, July 8, 2021. She was the first African American and the second Black to win the championship in the Scripps National Spelling Bee's 96-year history. The only previous Black winner was Jody-Anne Maxwell of Jamaica.

Mary Wilson performing

Mary Wilson who, along with Diana Ross and the late Florence Ballard, co-founded the iconic Supremes group, has died. She was 76.

According to the news media, Mary Wilson died in her home in Henderson, Nevada, US, on Feb 8, 2021. Before her death, it was reported that Mary Wilson was about to release a new album.

Cicely Tyson Awarded Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2016 by President Barack Obama

Cicely Tyson, an African-American actress, died on January 28, 2021.  Larry Thompson, her longtime manager, announced the passing of Cicely Tyson. She was 86 years old. Cicely Tyson is highly respected, especially in the Black communities, for refusing to act in roles that demean Black people, even when no other acting options were available.