|Drs. Smith, McDaniel, and Hardin received the 2016 Legacy Award|
Dr. Gerald Smith, Dr. Karen Cotton McDaniel and Dr. John A. Hardin, co-editors of the Kentucky African American Encyclopedia (University Press of Kentucky), were recipients of the 2016 Legacy Award at the 13th annual Black History Month Celebration at the Kentucky State Capitol in Frankfort. This year’s event, hosted by the Kentucky Black Legislative Caucus, focused on the theme “The Unfinished Business of Kentucky: ‘Symbolism and Reality.’”
Dr. Smith, professor of history and Martin Luther King Center Scholar-in Residence at the University of Kentucky, delivered the keynote address, “What is Kentucky Saying About Us (African Americans)?” to a standing room only crowd in the Capitol rotunda. Dr. Smith spoke just a few feet from the Jefferson Davis statue that was the symbolic focus of his presentation.
“This is not just a celebration of African American history,” Senator Gerald Neal explained. “This is a celebration of American history. Black History Month presents us an opportunity to remember the important legacy of African Americans in Kentucky and the nation – much of which would have been lost over the years if not for this special time of remembrance. It is important that we know and honor many of the notable citizens who have contributed to our history as well as pay respect to the many, many others whom history has forgotten. I encourage all Kentuckians to join me as we observe Black History Month.”