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African-American Museum's Black History Month Celebration to include Sloane Stevens Award in 10-

African-American Museum honors community leaders from throughout the Central Valley as ‘Trailblazers’

FRESNO, CA—Celebrating its 10-year anniversary, Saturday, Feb. 3, the African-American Historical & Cultural Museum of the San Joaquin Valley (AAHCMSJV) will host its annual Black History Month Celebration Banquet to honor the unsung voices of African-Americans from throughout the Valley at the Golden Palace located at 2625 W. Vassar Ave, Fresno, CA 93705.

The celebration, to be emceed by local weather reporter, Anthony Bailey, and community leader, Viva Straughter, will begin at 5:30 PM with a no-host reception followed by dinner and program at 6:30 PM, dancing to follow thereafter with star-studded talent Keysha Burns and The Impromptu Band.

The Black History Month Banquet commemorates local and national black history and celebrates black culture and contributions from throughout the Valley. AAHCM always begins the celebration by honoring icons from the Valley who have strived to make a difference in their communities while surpassing roadblocks, challenges or other personal hurdles that usually interfere with one’s greater achievements.

In honoring their legacy, the term “Trailblazer” designates the accomplishments of a community leader who has helped any members of the community through service and/or leadership against all odds.

Since the events inception 10 years ago, the AAHCMSJV has added a different twist the last few years by including local black anchors, reporters and media outlets as the award presenters for some of the newly added honors: The Professional Sports Wall of Fame: Sloane Stephens, Board of Trustees Medal of Honor: Arthur Moye, and The Jesse McDonald Jr. Community Dedication Award: Al Boutte.

This year’s 2018 Trailblazers are Marian Mosley, Dr. Carolyn C. Drake, Honorable Cynthia A. Sterling, Billie Ann Jelks-Hood, Wilma Dean Woods, Edward Burke, Roger L. Gray, Greg Louis McCowan, Dr. Leola Marie Archie, Apostle James O. Archie, Sr. (posthumously), Reynolds L. Johnson (posthumously), Mattie Pilkinton Taylor (posthumously), and Fannie B. Pilkinton (posthumously).

Trailblazer awards will be followed by two distinguished accolades; the Passing the Torch Award and the Shining Star Award. This year’s recipient of the Passing the Torch Award is talented, dynamic speaker, Pastor David Joseph Lee-Criner; the award was established to honor younger Trailblazers who lead their community and are on the path to becoming legendary trailblazers.

This year’s 2018 Shining Star Award, given to Central Valley-grown recipients recognized for their upstanding talents in entertainment and the performing arts, is honoring Keysha Burns.

Shining Star Awards recipient, Keysha Burns and The Impromptu Band will be the dancing entertainment throughout the event, featuring the star-studded voice of Burns.

Tickets are $100 each and tables seat up to 10 people. There will also be a silent auction featuring a variety of items, including African-American paintings, handcrafted pottery and an array of gift baskets.


For media inquiries, tickets or sponsorship packages call: 559-544-1857 -or- visit:

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