The mayor’s office in Gary held a press conference earlier this week to lend her support in announcing and encouraging Gary residents to attend the Indiana Black Expo (IBE). Also at the conference were key community stakeholders as Mayor Karen Freeman Wilson described the upcoming Indiana Black Expo’s Summer Celebration as a good resource that Gary citizens should attend.
In its 46th year, the Indiana Black Expo Summer Celebration runs now through Sunday, July 17 in Indianapolis, Ind. The 10-day Summer Celebration is one of two main fundraising events held each year with programs and events designed to educate, highlight and celebrate Black culture.
According to the Indiana Black Expo President, Tanya Bell, the conferences and workshops will not disappoint attendees as they cover topics specific to African-Americans related to health, education, business, employment and music just to name a few. Bell added the entertainment included a fashion show, concerts by Blackstreet and New Edition, followed by the annual All White Affair party and more.
Some of the highlights of the week will be a ceremony honoring Indianapolis’s First African American Fire Chief Joseph D. Kimbrew with the unveiling of a memorial and the renaming of Indianapolis Fire Department Fire Station 1; an international film festival with a “Your Life Matters” competition for the youth; a Business Opportunity Fair and a conference presented by Key Bank covering topics from marketing and entrepreneur services to small business contracting with HUD and free health screenings will be offered over a four day period at the InShape Indiana Black & Minority Health Fair, which is in its 31st year.
The 9th Annual Education Conference presented by Indiana Civil Rights Commission and Cummins Inc. will be a full day of workshops to empower educators in achieving equality in education of African Americans.
Three days have been devoted to issues facing our youth today during the Indiana Black Expo Youth Leadership Summit (YLS). This event is for Middle and High School student leaders who want to see and affect change in their community. YLS is a Youth Conference geared towards giving youth a platform to hear and learn from professionals regarding academics, decision-making and advocacy. In addition to networking with youth across the state, youth also become the teacher. Attendees will experience Purdue’s S.T.E.M. Games and Networking event. Attendees will compete in various activities to win a laptop. Gary Brackett’s Impact Ready Program will prepare attendees for the workforce. Saturday activities close out the day with the Slam Dunk Contest, Amp Harris and Reggie Wayne Celebrity Basketball Games and YLS White Party (attendees only).
Events include a celebrity basketball game, a youth conference, and concerts by Blackstreet at American Legion Hall July 15 and New Edition at Bankers Life Fieldhouse July 16. Other events include the Business Opportunity Fair at the Indiana Convention Center on July 14 and an education conference also on July 14 framed around “Leveling the Playing Field for All Students.”
The community supporters included Michael Suggs, Director, Operations Integration & Strategy, NIPSCO, sponsor of IBE’s Summer Celebration; Leroy Robinson, Northern Region Senior Vice Chairman, IBE Board & 2016 Reverend Charles R. Williams Awardee; Arvis Dawson, IBE Northern Region Director; Chuck Hughes, Executive Director, Gary Chamber of Commerce & IBE Board Member; Niquelle Allen Winfrey, Corporate Counsel, City of Gary & IBE Board Member; Vernon Williams, IUPUI Communications & Community Engagement Strategist, Gary Crusader Columnist; Stanford Carter, President, Gary Black Expo; Loretta Mosley, Lakeshore East Chicago Black Expo; Craig Clark, South Bend Black Expo; Robert Taylor, Elkhart Black Expo and Patricia Harris, Michigan City Black Expo.
For more information on the 46th annual Indiana Black Expo, go to www.indianablackexpo.-com/summercelebration/