Murkowski Shares Thoughts on Black History Month

Senator Honors Accomplishments of Alaskans and Americans

Senator Murkowski today shared her thoughts about the contributions of African Americans to the United States in honor of Black History Month:


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“Every February, millions of Americans come together to celebrate Black History Month. This month is an opportunity for us to honor the important role African Americans have played and continue to play in our great nation, and a chance to remember their struggles, accomplishments and contributions.

“From Martin Luther King Jr., one of the most instrumental forces in the Civil Rights movement, to Hiram R. Revels, the first African American U.S. Senator, to Jane Bolin, the first African American women to become a judge in the United States, let’s remember their achievements, and those of other African Americans throughout history.

“Here in Alaska, we have our own African American leaders to look to. There’s Captain Michael A. Healy of the U.S. Revenue Cutter Service – what we called the Coast Guard in the 1800s – who enforced federal law along Alaska’s coastline in the late 19th century. The United States’ only operational icebreaker, the Healy, is named after him. Over 3,000 African American engineers helped build the AlCan Highway during World War II. Then there’s Mahala Ashley Dickerson, Alaska’s first African American attorney, who was admitted to the bar in 1959.

“African Americans have made valuable and lasting contributions to our nation’s economic, cultural, spiritual, and political development.  The focus, resolve and pride of African Americans over the years is something we can all learn from and celebrate.”