Whereas, the citizens of the Empire State are proud to join in celebrating observances that are meaningful to the history of our state and nation and, during the month of February 2012, we come together for the commemoration of Black History Month, as this occasion offers us the opportunity to pay tribute to the unique, diverse, and groundbreaking contributions of the African American community to all areas of life in our great state and nation; and
Whereas, the Black experience throughout history is an enduring foundation upon which the Black community is built and stands, and the struggle and challenges overcome by African Americans throughout the centuries are inspiring to all Americans and reminders of the principles we share as a society; and
Whereas, “Black Women in American Culture and History” is the theme of this year’s national observance, which highlights the courage and contributions of Black American women throughout history, women of strength and spirit who have enriched our lives through their leadership, intellect, and creative vision; and
Whereas, New Yorkers join to honor those African American women who broke past social, economic, and political barriers to ensure equality and opportunity for all – from visionary leaders like Harriet Tubman, Mary Talbert, Sojourner Truth, Marian Anderson, Madam C.J. Walker, Mae Faggs, Shirley Chisholm, Bessie A. Buchanan, and Constance Baker Motley, to women of today who excel in every area of endeavor; and
Whereas, in order to enhance all New Yorkers’ understanding and awareness of these contributions, we honor these and other transformative leaders in “The African American Experience in New York,” a celebration in our State Capitol of New Yorkers who courageously led the fight for freedom, who worked to achieve equality, and who helped build our great state through their excellence in areas of law, literature, music, science, business, politics, and sports; and
Whereas, as we take this opportunity to study the accomplishments of all African Americans throughout history, we reflect on the role of the Black community in our nation’s past, present, and future; to enrich our understanding of the history of Black America is to broaden our understanding of our nation’s history, and, during Black History Month, New Yorkers join to honor the heritage and legacy of African Americans, with appreciation for their contributions to all areas of American life and culture;
Now, Therefore, I, Andrew M. Cuomo, Governor of the State of New York, do hereby proclaim February 2012 as
BLACK HISTORY MONTH
in the Empire State.
G i v e n under my hand and the Privy Seal of the State at
the Capitol in the City of Albany this fifteenth day of
February in the year two thousand twelve.
Secretary to the Governor