NOAA Celebrates
Black History Month: 2009

NOAA Black History Month Programs

Black History Month theme:
The Quest for Black Citizenship in the Americas

Great Debaters movie poster
Great Debaters movie poster

+ Larger Photo (Credit: Harpo Films)

February 4, 2009, 11:00 a.m. - 12:30 p.m.
SSMC3, Fourth Floor Conference Room
1305 East-West Highway, Silver Spring, Md.

This acclaimed film, produced by Oprah Winfrey (Harpo Productions) and starring Denzel Washington and Forest Whitaker, is the story of Melvin B. Tolson, debate coach at historically black Wiley College, and his struggle to place his team on equal footing with whites in the 1930's American South. The film is proudly presented by the NOAA Civil Rights Office and the NOAA Chapter, Blacks in Government (BIG).

February 11, 2009, 11:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m.
NOAA Auditorium, 1305 East-West Highway, Silver Spring, Md.
Speaker: Veronica Johnson, NBC News Channel 4 Meteorologist

Noted meteorologist Veronica Johnson, holder of the prestigious American Meteorological Society Broadcast Meteorology Seal of Approval, appears daily on NBC and online. She also hosts America This Week, a weekly 30-minute news show. Veronica began her broadcasting career at Atlanta's The Weather Channel, later moving to the Baltimore/Washington area where she has worked for the past six years. With a degree in atmospheric science from the University of North Carolina at Asheville, Veronica has contributed to local radio shows, programs on The Discovery Network, and Bob Ryan's Guide to the Weatherwise.

Veronica Johnson
Meteorologist Veronica Johnson

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She's active in professional, community enterprise, and youth development groups, and most recently, was appointed to Washington's Joint Center Advisory Committee on Climate Change. Veronica has received many professional and civic honors, including the NAACP New York Chapter's "Black Journalist of the Year Award." An avid fitness buff, Veronica enjoys rock-climbing, skydiving, and running. She lives in Howard County, Maryland, with her husband and their three children.

February 18, 2009, 10:30 a.m. - Noon
NOAA Auditorium, 1305 East-West Highway, Silver Spring, Md.
Speaker: Cynthia Willard-Lewis, New Orleans City Councilmember, District E

Cynthia Willard-Lewis' decades of public service in Louisiana have established her as a passionate and effective voice for children, the elderly, and the disadvantaged. Serving first in New Orleans, she was then elected to the Louisiana State Legislature, returning in 2000 to her beloved city to serve as Council Member for District E, the historic Lower Ninth Ward and most of New Orleans East, areas devastated by Hurricane Katrina in 2005. Council Member Willard-Lewis was a major force in coordinating emergency services during that disaster and later, championing the restoration of her district.

Cynthia Willard-Lewis
New Orleans Council Member Cynthia Willard-Lewis

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She has fought endlessly to rebuild citizens' homes, bring back evacuated residents, and prevent damaging opportunistic development. Her tireless efforts have resulted in legislation and resources to restore vital city infrastructure and bring new economic development to New Orleans. Cynthia is the recipient of a great many awards and accolades for her public leadership.

AWARDS PRESENTATION: The NOAA Civil Rights Office and NOAA Chapter, Blacks in Government proudly present the Second Annual Distinguished Service Awards. For award information, please visit the NOAA BIG Web site.

February 25, 2009, 11:00 a.m. - 12:30 p.m.
SSMC3, 4th Floor Conference Room
Black History Trivia Game

Learning history was never so much fun! Once again, the National Marine Fisheries Service team goes head-to-head with the National Weather Service, Office of Oceanic and Atmospheric Research, and the National Environmental Satellite, Data, and Information Service for the for the Black History Trivia Championship. Come cheer your favorites and pick up some fascinating lore along the way!