Oscar winners and other notable Compton natives honor Black culture
The City of Compton celebrated Black History Month with a dynamic and immersive event at the Dollarhide Center. This year’s event featured a wide range of activities and attractions, including art exhibits, special honoring ceremonies, giveaways, a kids’ zone, and more.
“Compton’s Black History Month celebration was truly a triumph, bringing together our community to celebrate the rich cultural heritage of our city. I am proud of our city for coming together to make this event such a resounding success and I look forward to continuing to celebrate and preserve our cultural heritage in the years to come,” said Mayor Emma Sharif.
The event included a YouTube screening of the film “A New Green Book”, an engaging travel series paying tribute to the classic Green Book, which was once a guidebook for Black travelers during the Jim Crow era, offering information on safe places for food and lodging. “A New Green Book” highlights and honors Black culture throughout the United States and the City of Compton is one of the stops included.
“We were extremely excited to feature the City of Compton in ‘A New Green Book,” said Mary Jo Madda, senior program manager, education for social impact at Google. “This city really has something for everyone. From eating delicious vegan food from Planet Health to seeing the amazing art installations at Gallery 90220, this is truly a City that celebrates Black culture and Black excellence”
The event also included a special presentation to honor former Compton Fire Chief Monroe Smith for his contributions to the Compton community as the first Black man to head a fire department in California.
Compton-born Oscar winners Travon Free and Samir Hernandez were in attendance and were recognized for their film “Two Distant Strangers”. Travon Free made history with his Oscar win as the first African-American filmmaker to win in the live-action short category.