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Join us for the last installment of The HistoryMakers Year in Review for the years 2019 and 2020. What a difference a year makes as 2019 found The HistoryMakers busy holding regional receptions and returning to Los Angeles to mount for the first time its An Evening With…PBS-TV taping and fundraiser with An Evening With Debra Lee, showcasing the life and career of media and entertainment mogul Debra Lee, former CEO of BET. It also expanded the reach of The HistoryMakers Digital Archive in 80 colleges, universities and public libraries as well as adding 131 interviews to its archival collection. 20@2020, The HistoryMakers launched a sustainability campaign with $7.5 million raised out of a $20 million goal. 20@2020 started the year with the launch, with a generous gift from Ursula Burns, of its WomanMakers Initiative, as well as gifts from Baldwin Richardson Foods Eric Johnson, Merck CEO Kenneth Frazier and his wife Andréa Frazier and Lincoln Financial Corporation. Before the COVID pandemic, only fifteen HistoryMakers were added to The HistoryMakers’ archives. In addition to behind-the-scenes footage, the program includes a musical tribute featuring Esperanza Spalding and Robert Glasper, provided courtesy of International Jazz Day and The Herbie Hancock Institute of Jazz, in tribute to Ursula Burns, Kenneth & Andréa Frazier, Eric Johnson, Debra Lee and those interviewed in 2019 and 2020. Immediately following is a screening of An Evening With Debra Lee.

An Evening With Debra Lee - Special Viewing

An Evening With Debra Lee

Taped: Friday, October 11, 2019

An Evening With Debra Lee explores the interesting life and career of one of the nation’s top women in media and entertainment.  She began her career as a typical young corporate lawyer at Black Entertainment Television (BET) as in-house counsel.  Her career took off from there.  Ms. Lee worked alongside founder of BET, Bob Johnson, playing an instrumental role in the company’s growth.  At the end of the historic $3 billion sale of BET to Viacom, Lee became the CEO of BET.  The network began to launch original programming and expanded BET’s reach beyond the music videos as they launched a Black woman-centered network, Centric. 

Hosted by ABC News Correspondent Deborah Roberts, An Evening With Debra Lee, this story is told against the backdrop of R&B music by music director from Dancing With the Stars Ray Chew and his Ray Singers with performance from Eric Benet and the legendary Chaka Khan.

Find more information on the program here.

The HistoryMakers On Courage (2006) - Special Viewing

SuccessThe HistoryMakers: Courage is the third volume of The HistoryMakers documentary series, focused on possessing the courage to fight for your dreams. Through a series of real life stories and experiences, this documentary illustrates how taking stands against social, economic, and racial barriers, were amongst the many courageous actions taken by these History Makers to achieve their aspirations. Through the revealing personal stories of influential African Americans such as Nikki Giovanni, Vernon Jordan, Angela Davis, Harry Belafonte, and many others, we are shown the importance of following your own path and standing up for what you believe in despite the opposition or consequences. With compelling stories of adversity, perseverance, and triumph, these History Makers tell of the great amount of courage necessary to achieve success as an African American.   Purchase DVD here.

Date and Time

Saturday, December 19, 2020

7 p.m. EST/ 6 p.m. CST/ 5 p.m. MST/ 4 p.m. PST

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