In our ongoing commitment to reflect the diversity of the communities we serve, KCET and Union Bank honor two local heroes of the African American community for their dedication and commitment to enrich the lives of others.
My work is inspired by all of those who help me help others and by the 'do for others' example my parents set.
From mother's helper to talk show host, Shirlee Smith has taken her knowledge and experiences of parenting to new heights. She is the founder and president of Talk About Parenting with Shirlee Smith, Inc. Created in 1997, the Pasadena-based nonprofit organization specializes in parenting issues and takes a no-nonsense approach of how to raise happy, balanced children. Her website, talkaboutparenting.org, offers a wealth of resources for parents. Ms. Smith provides parenting workshops for incarcerated mothers, she is a popular public speaker, writes an award-winning newspaper column and writes a blog. She is the author of "They're You're Kids Not You're Friends," and the Spanish version, "Son tus Hijos, no tus Amigos." Ms Smith received the 2006 Angel in Adoption Congressional Award. She is a graduate of UCLA. She was recently named to serve as Chair of Pacific Clinics Family Programs Advisory Board.View Full Article
"My inspiration as an artist and art historian comes from the need to bring greater attention to the accomplishments of African American artists."
Dr. Samella Lewis has touched the lives of artists, scholars, educators, students and countless others through her dedication and perseverance of African American art. She has enhanced the cultural fabric of Los Angeles' art scene and nationally and continues to be an influential voice that is respected.
Dr. Lewis's professorship as an art historian is an incredible journey of preservation and accomplishments. She has dedicated much of her career to Scripps College of the Claremont Colleges - where she became the first tenured African American professor in art history. She has served as professor emeriti of art history since 1984 and was the school's art history professor since 1969. These roles have afforded Dr. Lewis the opportunity to mentor countless students and young artists. As a celebration of Dr. Lewis's insight of African American art, the Ruth Chandler Williamson Gallery of Scripps College is currently displaying the Samella Lewis Contemporary Art Collection, which focuses on African American artists, women artists and women of color. Furthermore, Scripps College has named a scholarship in her honor.View Full Article