RSM Celebrates Black History Month
By Charles Barley Jr. and Michelle Mugg
The story of Black History Month (or National African American History Month) begins in 1915, as an annual celebration of achievements by black Americans, and a time for recognizing the central role of African Americans in U.S. history. The event was the brainchild of Harvard-trained historian Carter G. Woodson and Jesse E. Moorland, who founded the Association for the Study of African American Life and History. In 1926 this group led the sponsoring of “Black History Week”, choosing the second week of February to coincide with the birthdays of Abraham Lincoln and Frederick Douglass. President Gerald R. Ford officially recognized Black History Month in 1976, calling on the public to “seize the opportunity to honor the too-often neglected accomplishments of black Americans in every area of endeavor throughout our history”.
Since then, every U.S. president has officially designated the month of February as Black History Month. With the U.S. leading the way, similar recognitions have since been implemented by other countries around the world, including Canada and the United Kingdom.
In recognition of the contributions African Americans make to our nation and to the world, RSM is proud to demonstrate “the power of being understood” to our diverse group of clients and employees. By focusing on understanding our people’s personal and professional goals, and by supporting a diverse and inclusive workforce, we empower our people to bring their best to all of their interactions, thereby helping our clients – and one another – succeed.
Charles Barley Jr., RAS Director & Leader of RSM’s African American Community of Excellence (AACE) Employee Network Group (ENG) and Michelle Mugg, tax processing lead and AACE ENG member