Black History Month

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The California Natural Resources Agency (CNRA) and its supporting departments, invite you to celebrate Black History Month with us. Through virtual and in-person events, we will be honoring Black leaders in the environmental field, who work to protect the environment for current and future generations and encourage others to become environmental stewards.

This year’s theme is Roots and Resilience in Nature, which aims to pay tribute to the Black race and culture and those who have always sought refuge in nature. There is a long history of Black communities setting roots and creating a foundation to recover and flourish through life’s ever-changing ecosystems.

CDFW Event - Celebrating African American Roots, Resilience and Prosperity: Academic Perspectives on Understanding and Protecting Natural Resources

  • Description:

Sponsored by the CDFW and moderated by Environmental Program Manager, Alexandria Turner and Chuck Bonham, CDFW Director.

In conversation:

Dr. James Reede Jr, Ph.D. Sacramento State University Environmental Studies Professor, Community Activist, Previous Chair of the United Negro College Fund

Khalil Russell Hampton University 3rd year “Population Biology” Ph.D. Student

Bryce Barbee University of California Santa Barbara, Scholar Ph.D. Student

  • Time: 2:00pm - 3:00 pm

After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the webinar.

Allensworth: A California African American Town (virtual)

  • Description: Welcome to Colonel Allensworth State Historic Park, a town founded, financed and governed by African Americans. In 1908, Colonel Allen Allensworth and four other settlers established a town in California’s Great Central Valley. Their dream of developing an abundant and thriving community stemmed directly from a strong belief in programs that allowed blacks to help themselves create better lives. Colonel Allen Allensworth and the community of Allensworth represent a significant chapter in history.
  • Time: 10 a.m. – 11 a.m. via Zoom
You can also visit the California State Parks' PORTScast Programs to learn more. Follow us on social media @PORTSprogram to become an official #PORTSfan!

Allensworth and the California Buffalo Soldier Trail (virtual)

  • Description: Lt. Col. Allen Allensworth had been one of the foremost leaders of a remarkable group of African American military personnel known as the Buffalo Soldiers. This program will be an introduction to the long reaching history of the iconic Buffalo Soldiers, their travels and contributions to the great State of California, and their lasting legacy within the state and national park systems.
  • Time: 1:30 pm – 2:30 pm. via Zoom
You can also visit the California State Parks' PORTScast Programs to learn more. Follow us on social media @PORTSprogram to become an official #PORTSfan!

StoryWalk: Alvin Coffey The True Story of an African American Forty-Niner

  • Description: Join William B. Ide Adobe State Historic Park to celebrate Black History Month with a StoryWalk featuring Alvin Coffey: The True Story of an African American Forty-niner by Nancy Leek. Come to StoryWalk to learn about an inspiring local historical figure. California State Parks staff will also help you create related crafts and play games. The StoryWalk® Project was created by Anne Ferguson of Montpelier, Vermont, and developed in collaboration with the Kellogg-Hubbard Library.
  • Time: 10 a.m. - 2 p.m.
  • Where: William B. Ide Adobe State Historic Park. The park is located at 21659 Adobe Rd., Red Bluff, CA 96080. Follow the park on Facebook and Instagram.

Community Connection Lunch Mixer

  • Description: The California Natural Resources Agency (CNRA) Black History Month Committee and the Getaway Café are pleased to present a Community Connection lunch mixer in the Sacramento Headquarters cafeteria. The Getaway Café will be serving a culture-centric meal as the special of the day, and the committee will have games available to promote community, networking, and allyship. Have lunch in the cafeteria, network, and bring your best game for the Dominoes duel and Spades showdown!
  • Time: 11:30 a.m. – 1:30 p.m.
  • Where: Getaway Café, 715 P Street, Sacramento, CA 95814
  • Register: Registration is not required.

Black Miners Bar Outdoor Event

  • Description: Please join the California Conservation Corps (CCC), and California State Parks for an outdoors event at the Black Miners Bar. CCC crews will conduct brush clean up, tree removal, and preparation for native planting. Parks staff will be on hand to give an overview of the significance of area known as Black Miners Bar.
  • Time: 10:30 a.m. - 1 p.m.
  • Where: Park Road, Folsom Lake State Recreation Area in Sacramento County

Career Pathways for Blacks and African Americans in State Service

  • Description: Building on this year's theme of Roots and Resilience, this panel is designed to highlight the importance of the contributions of Black and African American people in state service and to help inspire and grow the number of Black and African American people who work in natural resources for state service. This panel is focused on connecting young folks with the goal to share resources and knowledge needed to plan for and achieve meaningful state careers to support themselves, and their communities. Topics discussed during this panel will include: the benefits of state service, recruitment and outreach, and information on how to apply for state service.
  • Time: 12:30 pm – 1:30 pm

CNRA Secretary Speaker Series – Celebrating Conservation Roots with Black Environmental Leadership

  • Description: Join us for an inspiring webinar during Black History Month, where we will explore the rich history and contributions of the Black community leading environmental and conservation efforts. Explore the Black community's deep-rooted connection to nature, emphasizing resilience, heritage, and the ongoing journey toward equity. Don't miss this opportunity to gain valuable insights from our esteemed panel of speakers.
  • Time: 12 noon – 1 pm
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About Black History Month

Welcome to Black History Month – a time dedicated to uplifting, learning, and appreciating Black heritage and culture. The colors Black, red, green and yellow are often associated with Black History Month and each color has its own distinct meaning and significance. There is a rich history to the colors and many alternative perspectives on their significance worth exploring, but they are commonly thought to represent:

Red - bloodshed and sacrifice in the struggle against racism, slavery, and colonialism

Green - nature, the rich greenery of Africa and our natural resources

Yellow - justice, optimism, equality

Black – resilience, a shared identity, and the colors of Black skin

Altogether the colors are a source of pride and symbol of unity!

Speaker Series: Black Environmental Stewardship