SER National proudly joins the nation in celebrating Black History Month. This month-long observance is a testament to the creative and artistic contributions made by African Americans that enrich the cultural fabric of our nation.
Ignacio Salazar, President and CEO of SER National, expressed his appreciation for the profound impact of African Americans on the United States, stating, “SER National and the SER Network of Affiliates proudly join in the month-long acknowledgment and appreciation for the creative and artistic contributions made to our nation by African Americans.” Salazar continued, “In every aspect of our society and every walk of life, our experience as a country savors foods, music, and pop culture inspired by the Black experience. Indeed, our nation is more beautiful because of the God-given talent, love, and labor expressed for centuries through the works of Blacks in the United States.”
From Harlem to Hollywood, Black artists have played a pivotal role in shaping the cultural landscape. Their creative expressions harmonize with the beats of progress, uplifting the race, speaking truth to power, and inspiring a nation. As we pay homage to Black History Month, let us celebrate the achievements of the past and acknowledge the work that lies ahead.
Salazar emphasized the diversity reflected within SER affiliates, stating, “SER affiliates reflect this same grace from their richly diverse leadership and staffs that warmly welcome all who walk through our doors daily irrespective of race, more than one million people annually.”
As we delve into the significance of Black History Month, it is essential to recognize its historical roots. Originating in the 1920s, the Association for the Study of African American Life and History (ASALH) founded a national Negro History Week. This week was strategically placed in the second week of February, aligning with the birthdays of Abraham Lincoln and Frederick Douglass. Over time, the celebration evolved, and by the late 60s, it transitioned into Black History Month. In 1976, President Ford officially designated February as Black History Month, solidifying a tradition that endures to this day.
Beyond the festivities, Black History Month serves as a reminder of the ongoing challenges related to race-related harassment and discrimination. Businesses celebrating Black History Month present a unique opportunity to initiate conversations about race, fostering awareness for Black and minority voices. SER National recognizes the importance of addressing these issues in society and the workplace.
Salazar concluded with a poignant call to action: “The greatest tribute we can pay to the many Black artists and professionals in America is to emulate their example through our daily works in our jobs, careers, and dealings with each other. In this way, our work transcends what we do as more than tasks and activities. Indeed, Black History Month is an opportunity to reflect and appreciate our greater purpose each day. Working together, our greatest collective art is the very strength of our labor diversity. May we then celebrate the shared benefits when we apply our skills and knowledge through the use of our minds and bodies in service to others for the betterment of our world. Bravo, Black History Month!”