American Airlines And Its Employees Celebrate Black History Month With Events Nationwide
Highlights Include NAACP Image Awards Sponsorship, UNCF Benefit, Genealogy Workshop and Black Heritage Festival
During Black History Month, American Airlines and American Eagle are continuing their long history of diversity and inclusion by celebrating African-American culture, successful individuals, and supporting national and local organizations focused on providing opportunities to African-Americans.
The airline will continue its corporate sponsorship of the NAACP Image Awards, which it has supported for many years. Additional highlights this month include special features at AA.com/women and in the American and American Eagle inflight magazines, as well as a celebration in Fort Worth honoring the Tuskegee Airmen. Events organized by the company’s African-American Employee Resource Groups (AAERGs) include a luncheon benefit for the UNCF and a genealogy workshop at the Alliance Fort Worth Airport, special activities in Tulsa, a Black History Month celebration in Miami, and a fundraiser in Chicago to fight sickle cell anemia.
“American is extremely proud of its long history of year-round support to the African-American community and of the rich diversity that is reflected in our employees, customers, suppliers, and the global communities we serve,” said Denise Lynn, Vice President – Diversity and Leadership Strategies. “It is wonderful to see continued growth in the number and variety of Black History Month activities supported by our employees around the country.”
Some programs and activities taking place during Black History Month:
National: American is the airline sponsor of the NAACP Image Awards, to be televised live on Feb. 12 from Los Angeles. American is a longtime sponsor of this revered organization, which this year celebrates its 100 th anniversary. The awards event will include a videotaped message from Gerard Arpey, AMR Chairman and Chief Executive Officer.
The company’s AA.com/women site will feature content about the African-American Giving Circle, a Washington, D.C., nonprofit organization that awards grants and cultivates new giving channels within the city. There will also be an online article about Fritzie G. Woods, Chief Executive Officer of Primesource Foodservice Equipment, which is one of the largest black-owned industrial services firm in the country.
American Way , American’s inflight magazine, offers articles this month about San Antonio Spurs NBA player Tony Parker and ESPN hosts Mark Jones, Ahmad Rashad and Chris Webber, as well as WNBA star Lisa Leslie. There is also a Q&A with Denise Lynn, American’s Vice President – Diversity and Leadership Strategies. Latitudes, American Eagle’s inflight publication, includes a story about Queen Latifah.
Dallas/Fort Worth : American Airlines sponsored the Black College Alumni Night/Greek Night at the Dallas Mavericks vs. Chicago Bulls game on Sat. Feb. 7, at the American Airlines Center in Dallas. American gave away a pair of round-trip domestic coach tickets during a break in the game and also collected entries for an additional drawing to be held this week. Two additional winners from that drawing will receive a pair of round-trip domestic coach tickets from American.
Coming up Feb. 13 and 14, American will sponsor a one-man, two-act play by actor, author and decorated Korean War veteran James McEachin, entitled, “Above the Call, Beyond the Duty.” To be held at Casa Mañana in Fort Worth, the play is a tribute to American veterans and a salute to the Tuskegee Airmen, with proceeds benefiting the C.R.P. Future Pilots Flight School.
Local middle- and high-school students will attend a Feb. 13 daytime performance and take part in an educational round-table discussion with DFW Tuskegee Airmen and veterans from Iraq and Afghanistan. The Feb.14 evening program is open to the public and will include a performance by renowned gospel recording artist Dottie Peoples. A reception for McEachin and the other honored veterans will be held following the play. Tickets are available through the Casa Mañana box office or by calling 817-332-CASA (2272).
The C.R.P. Future Pilots Flight School, whose students are primarily African-American and Latin American, supports the legacy of the Tuskegee Airmen and educates youth in aviation concepts, math, science and piloting principles. American Airlines is a major sponsor of the school, which is the only one of its kind in the U.S. that has a formal partnership with a major commercial airline
Each Monday in February at the Alliance Fort Worth Airport, the AAERG will host a celebration of African-American music including blues, jazz and ‘70s soul. In addition, the group will hold genealogy and health awareness workshops, an art exhibit, and a special luncheon to benefit UNCF scholarship recipients. These events will be held at the Alliance Fort Worth cafeteria and are open to the public.
Tulsa: The AAERG in Tulsa will welcome Oklahoma State Representative Jake Henderson, as a featured speaker this month and will highlight the lives of famous African-Americans from the 1950s to the present.
Los Angeles: A poster featuring famous African-Americans and entitled, “Ladder to Leadership,” is being produced by that city’s AAERG, which is also planning a soul food dinner and a membership drive.
Miami: The Miami AAERG, in conjunction with Dade County officials, will host a Black History Month celebration including fashion shows, on-site vendors and a membership drive.
Chicago: The AAERG chapter at O’Hare International Airport is hosting a Black Heritage Festival including soul food, specialty vendors and more, as well as an “Endless Love” dinner event to raise funds for the Sickle Cell Anemia Foundation.
Cary, N.C.: American’s Southeast Reservations Office in Cary, N.C., is planning a “Soul Food Day” in its cafeteria. Employees will also enjoy trivia contests, and the group is conducting a bone-marrow drive throughout the month.
More information about American’s employee resource groups can be found on AA.com, in the About Us section – just go to Diversity and Inclusion and select Employees.
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