Unified Government Black History Committee

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What is the Black History Committee?

The Black History Committee (BHC) is a Committee comprised of Unified Government employees and community members who seek to educate and empower on cultural awareness and pride. Our Mission is to inspire, respect, and celebrate African Americans' lifelong achievements, history, and future in our community and in America.

Our Purpose:

Our goal is to break down community barriers by inviting everyone to join us in celebrating Black History Month with the local government. The yearly commemoration began in the United States in 1926, when historian Carter G. Woodson advocated that it be used to commemorate African Americans and improve awareness of Black history.

What We Do:

The Black History Committee (BHC) of the Unified Government is a volunteer committee that hosts an annual banquet to honor African-American achievements, provide educational scholarships to local educational institutions, award door prizes, feature keynote speakers, recognize minority-owned businesses in our community, and provide live entertainment for our guests' enjoyment.

Committee Background:

The Black History Committee (BHC) has been in existence since 1982. The founders met with city administrators and the mayor to seek support for forming a committee that would represent the local government in organizing an annual event for Black History Month, awarding scholarships to local institutions, and highlighting local businesses in Wyandotte County. The committee has continued contributing back to the community for forty years by generating funds, creating awareness of community efforts, and collaborating with local educational institutions.

Current BHC Members:

Shaya Lockett, Chair Deasiray Bush, Vice-Chair
Janice Barnett, Secretary Gordon Criswell, Treasurer
Jaron Briggs Tyszu Woolridge
Reginald Lindsey Sherry Love
Krystal McFeders Brandy Wells


How to be Involved:

The BHC would like to encourage UG employees to join the committee in the spring of 2023. The committee can consist of 15 members. We're searching for someone with fundraising expertise, community partner contacts, and the ability to participate in meetings, events, and lead subcommittees. We're also seeking volunteers for a Fundraiser Sub-Committee.

 Revised BHC Application Graphic 2023

Not interested in being a member of our committee? Don't worry, you may still help us by promoting upcoming events, donating to our scholarship fund, or providing support.

2/18/2023 - 31st Annual Celebration & Scholarship Banquet

31st Annual Black History Celebration and Scholarship Banquet 

2023 Theme: "Preserving Our History" 

On Saturday, February 18, 2023, the Unified Government Black History Committee hosted a night full of networking, local entertainment, amazing food and drinks as well as an engaging panel discussion focusing on honoring and preserving the history of Wyandotte County and Kansas City, Kansas. It is important that the legacy of our historic landmarks are not only recognized but preserved for the understanding and enjoyment of generations to come. 

Panel Discussion Theme: Preserving Our History 

Moderator: Gordon Criswell 
Event Panelists:

  • Amy Loch - Director of the Wyandotte County Musuem 
  • Randy Greeves - Unified Government Historic Preservationist 
  • John L. McPherson III - Owner of JLM Construction 
  • Sheleah D. McPherson - Owner of Leah’s Laundromat on the Q


Donations and proceeds from this event went towards scholarships for Wyandotte County and Kansas City, Kansas students.  



Donate Now


Donations will help local educational institutions in Wyandotte County pay for students' tuition, books, and fees.

We Accept Checks!
Make your check payable to KCK African American History Committee and mail to:

5033 State Avenue, Kansas City, KS 66101
Attention: Shaya Lockett

Past Events

30th Annual Black History Celebration & Scholarship Event

2022 Theme: Black Health & Awareness

This event consisted of a dynamic and engaging community discussion moderated by UG Public Information Officer, Krystal McFeders with special guests:

Nicole Garner, Unified Government Public Health Department Operations Manager

Tykeisha Kelly, Special Education Social Worker

  • When: Friday, February 25, 2022
  • Time: 1:00 PM
  • Where: Virtual Live Stream (Zoom & Facebook)
    Click Here to Access the Event Video

Scholarships Awards: Donnelly College and Kansas City Kansas Community College (KCKCC)
2022 Legendary Award: Morris Letcher
Community Business Award: Anna's BLD Bistro

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We look forward to engaging with you!

Past Event and Community Engagement Photos







Community Health & Awareness Resources

Listed below are a few community health and awareness resources provided by 2/25/22 event speakers Nicole Garner and TyKeisha Kelly.  

Source: Center for Disease Control (CDC)

Source: Association of Black Cardiologists 

Source: Unified Government Public Health Department (UGPHD)
Coronavirus (COVID-19) Information – Unified Government of Wyandotte County and Kansas City (wycokck.org)

Health & Awareness Resources (English & Spanish)(PDF, 2MB)