“We Are Made By History” a Virtual Conversation

Wednesday 18th January 2023

From Booker T. Washington, W.E.B DuBois, and Marcus Garvey, to Martin Luther King Jr. and Malcolm X, African American leadership has been questioned and scrutinized both within the community and by those outside.


Whether representing an organization or political party and at the risk of their very own lives and freedom, the goal has been the same; social, civil, educational, and economic advancement for American people of the African diaspora.

Mass Humanities invites you to a lunchtime panel conversation with African American Leaders in the Commonwealth in commemoration of MLK Day

However, after the election of the first African American president in 2008, and the first African American woman vice president, questions still arise about who is most qualified to represent the concerns of the African American community and the best course of action toward change.

Mass Humanities spotlights the diverse historical expertise and experiences of our community members, and hosts community events that spark conversations between neighbors about what it means to be a free and equitable society.

To mark the commemoration of the birthday of the only African American with a national holiday, our Reading Frederick Douglass Together Program invites you to a lunchtime panel conversation with African American Leaders in the Commonwealth. In what ways, if any, do leaders today see themselves in these popular representatives of African American leadership? How are their challenges, communities, and solutions the same as these historic figures; how are they different?


  • Justin Hurst, City Councilor- Springfield
  • Khrystian King, At-Large City Councilor- Worcester
  • Latonia Naylor, At-Large School Committee Member-Springfield
  • Jimmy Pereira, Former Mayoral Candidate- Brockton

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