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News & Events

February 24, 2014

Gov. Deval Patrick and President Dana Mohler-Faria led a panel discussion titled, “The Future of Black History,” shining a light on issues pertaining to race in America.

Sharing the stage were state Administrative Judge Yvonne Vieira Cardoza, ’91, and Davede Alexander of the Ron Burton Training Village and CEO and chief strategist for Innovo Strategic Solutions, LLC. Each member of the panel contributed to what had been billed as a candid conversation about the challenges each has faced in life, their successes, and the ways future generations can make their mark on history.

Speaking to the many young people in the near-capacity Horace Mann Auditorium, President Mohler-Faria set the tone for the afternoon.

“We often think of black history retrospectively, as what has happened in the world and what has changed in the world… But the reality is many of you sitting in this audience today will make history. So, as we think of history, as we think of change, as we think of it from a historical perspective, we must almost think about it as we look forward.”

The president introduced Gov. Patrick, who talked about meeting Doug Wilder, former governor of Virginia, and the first African American to be elected governor of a U.S. state.

“He said being the first doesn’t mean a thing unless there’s a second,” the governor recalled. “And I loved that point. Because it’s so much about passing it on. It’s about what we do right now for you. And what you do right now for yourselves and for a generation to come.”

The panelists shared a past marked by poverty, yet achieved beyond their dreams through hard work, education, making good choices and not being afraid to take risks at the right time, said Dr. Anna Bradfield, executive director of university initiatives, who introduced the panel.

The full video of the event is courtesy of TVS

President Dana Mohler-Faria
The panelists