Members of Buffalo's African American community took center stage in the lobby of City Hall Tuesday afternoon. WBFO'S Eileen Buckley says they attended a celebration of Black History Month hosted by the Mayor.
"We come from a history of fighters. We came with chains and they fought for freedom, justice and equality," said Buffalo State graduate Aitina Fareed Cooke. She delivered a powerful "Spoken Word" in the lobby of City Hall. It reflected those who fought for freedom, but a calls for new, modern time freedoms to be fought.
The theme of this year's celebration is "At the Crossroads of Freedom and Equality".
This year we celebrate two historic historic anniversaries -- the Emancipation Proclamation --150-years ago and the March on Washington -- 50-years ago.
Buffalo Mayor Byron Brown, the city's first African American Mayor, recognized a number of black community.
Among those recognized for their work in the African American community were husband and wife, Dr. Curly Jones-brown and Dr. Lloyd Brown for their program called SENSES.
SENSES is a comprehensive tutoring and mentioning program for teens and young adults.
Pastor Anita Williams of Buffalo received the community award. She spreads here ministry through various outlets -- including television, radio and literacy appearances.
Pastor Williams has also devoted her time to the "Taken it to the Streets International". She humbly accepted the award and shares it with her volunteers.
Barbara Glover of Miss Barbara's School of Dance in Buffalo received the arts award for working with youth. Glover considers dance as a key ingredient to an education.
"Everyone. Male and female confidence. It's the discipline that's derived from dance that carries off into every area," said Glover.
Tuesday's Black History Celebration at City Hall included a ceremonial color guard, that opened the program, prayers and uplifting music and dance provided by the African Cultural Center.