The Black Excellence Alliance (BEA) Gala Honored the Victims of the Tulsa Race Massacre and Inducted Legends of Entrepreneurship and Invention
The Black Excellence Alliance (BEA) Gala Honored the Victims of the Tulsa Race Massacre and Inducts Legends into the Black Entrepreneurs Hall of Fame and the Black Inventors Hall of Fame
The Black Excellence Alliance (BEA) Gala Honors the Victims of the Tulsa Race Massacre and Inducts Legends into the Black Entrepreneurs Hall of Fame and the Black Inventors Hall of Fame. TULSA, Oklahoma – June 1, 2021
On May 30th, 2021, The Black Excellence Alliance in partnership with The Black Entrepreneurs Hall of Fame and The Black Inventors Hall of Fame produced its 1st Annual Induction Ceremony. This year BEA honored the accomplishments of 10 entrepreneurs and inventors. The honorees were. Granville T. Woods, Dr. Charles Drew, Dr. Patricia Bath, Dr. Gladys West, Dr. Mark Dean, JB Stratford, Reginald Lewis, John and Loula Williams, Albert White, and Dr. Lonnie Johnson.
BEA also honored the legacy of the Tulsa community and its resiliency despite its tremendous loss. The Tulsa community is infamously known for the 1921 Race Massacre that occurred on May 30, 1921. BEA’s event occurred on the 100th Anniversary of this historic event.
“Our historic gala was held on May 30, 2021, because this day, 100 years ago, was the last day that the thriving Black entrepreneurial section of Tulsa was the wealthiest Black community in the United States. It was destroyed by white supremacists through an attack by both air and foot that very next day,” said Dr. Dale Caldwell, founder of the Black Entrepreneur and Black Inventors Halls of Fame.
Jennifer Demetrius, the executive director of the Dale Caldwell Foundation, added to his comments by saying “by holding our inaugural induction ceremonies in Tulsa on this important day, we are paying tribute to the victims of the massacre by celebrating Black excellence.”
BEA began the evening by presenting a plaque to the City of Tulsa in honor of the victims of the massacre.
Amanda Chastang, Diversity Officer at the University of Tulsa states “Greenwood is a model of what urban communities could become when education, entrepreneurship, and job training are prioritized.”
The event attracted some very influential attendees who appreciated the BEA’s ability to acknowledge the problems of the past while focusing on future solutions. Attendees included Benjamin Crump and Congresswoman Shelia Jackson Lee (TX). Awards were received posthumously by Loida Lewis (Reginald Lewis), John Rodgers (JB Stratford), Karen Robinson (John and Loula Williams), and Valerie Drew (Dr. Charles Drew). Dr. Gladys West (age 91) submitted a heart-wrenching acceptance speech. Dr. Mark Dean submitted his acceptance speech virtually. Granville T. Woods award and Dr. Patricia Bath’s award were accepted by the organizations. In attendance were awardees Mr. Albert White and Dr. Lonnie Johnson who was the only awardee from both the BEHOF and the BIHOF.
Glenn Best, the Executive Director of the Black Entrepreneurs Hall of Fame (BEHOF) stated “the focus of the event was on the historic inaugural hall of fame inductions to introduce the world to extraordinary business leaders and inventors who have succeeded in spite of discrimination.”
James Howard, the Executive Director of the Black Inventors Hall of Fame (BIHOF) stated “the unique combination of innovation and resilience, as demonstrated by our BIHOF inductees this year, is the main reason that the black community could survive centuries of oppression.”
BEA also honored 2 organizations of the year for 2021. ENACTUS (BEHOF) and the Inventors Hall of Fame (BIHOF).
The events title sponsor was 4insite/SBM. Marie Espinoza (President of 4Insite/SBM), stated “This amazing event made it clear that if public, private and non-governmental organizations invest in developing entrepreneurs and inventors in communities that have historically struggled financially the whole country benefits.”
The gala was produced and distributed by Lloyd Media Group (www.lloydmediagroup.net). The rebroadcast will be available on June 10th, 2021 on blackexcellence.org and HBCUnation.org.
About the Black Excellence Alliance (BEA)
The Black Excellence Alliance (BEA) is a consortium of Black leaders and organizations focused on the development of the Black diaspora through education, employment and entrepreneurship. The group consists of halls of fame, education and employment organizations, entrepreneurship programs and financial, social and information networks. BEA is one of the most comprehensive and diverse alliances of independent Black organizations in the country. This alliance includes the Black Educators Hall of Fame, the Black Entrepreneurs Hall of Fame, the Black Executives Hall of Fame, the Black Inventors Hall of Fame, Camden Dream Center, the Entrepreneur Zone program, HBCU Nation and ReconnectTech. The Dale Caldwell Foundation (DCF) is the 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization serving as the fiscal agent of BEA. DCF is coordinating Alliance activities and accepting sponsorships and contributions. By sponsoring or contributing to DCF, you will be supporting four Black halls of fame, national education, employment, and entrepreneurship programs. In addition, your brand will be visible to millions of influential people in the Black community.
Media Contact: Jennifer Demetrius