February is Black History Month – and an excellent opportunity to take a moment and reflect on the rich history each of us brings to our community.
Secretary Johnson greets staff gathered a Black History Month celebration at the U.S. Small Business Administration
To know and honor African American history, Irish American history, Italian American history, Jewish history, Hispanic history, or any other heritage, one need look no further than your own family tree. We are all part of a continuing arc of history that contributes to the rich diversity of this Nation.
Secretary Johnson listens while being introduced to deliver keynote remarks entitled “A Century of Black Life, History, and Culture” at the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA)
My great grandfather Richard M. Goodwin was from Selma, Alabama. He was a Pullman car porter for 44 years and a member and officer of A. Philip Randolph’s Brotherhood of Sleeping Car Porters. In 2006, my wife, kids, parents and I piled into an RV and ventured south to visit Selma to find some trace of my mother’s Goodwin ancestry there. We looked through cemeteries for headstones marked “Goodwin,” and asked around town. We found nothing. Then, we stopped by the historic Brown Chapel in Selma, origination point for the 1965 civil rights march that crossed the Edmund Pettis Bridge and on to Montgomery. My father, an architect, happened to look at the cornerstone of that landmark church structure, built in 1908, and discovered it said “R.M. Goodwin, Secretary.”
Secretary Johnson engages with SBA staff following his remarks.
I encourage all of you to celebrate Black History month by attending and participating in events in your communities.