The African American Historical and Cultural Museum, with sponsorship from the State Center Community College District, recognized Sam U. Lane (posthumously), Paul Binion, and Renee Craig-Marius’ service to the district, placing them on the Wall of Honor on Thursday, February 28 .
AAHCM is a nonprofit that was founded in 1985 by Fresno Police Department Homicide Detective Jack Kelley. He was the first African American sergeant in 1969.
Artworks involving prominent African Americans within the San Joaquin Valley is displayed at the museum. The Wall of Honor was established at the AAHCM in 1996.
As spectators enjoyed hors d’oeuvres in OAB 251, music played in the background by a live DJ on a keyboard with speakers and mic in tow. The room was filled with people of all ages, races, and creeds.
Lucy Ruiz, Executive Director of Public & Legislative Relations for SCCCD gave the welcoming remarks followed by an overview of upcoming events at AAHCM from Christian Gregory, a member of the board for the museum. Later, a message from the museum was presented.
“Without the backbone of the community, and this partnership, we wouldn’t be able to do this at all,” Julia Dudley-Najieb, a member of the board for the museum, said. “This legacy is going to keep going. How can you better yourself without knowledge of your history?”
Dudley-Najieb went on to explain that we, “Have the right to fill our walls with history right from our backyard.” She explained that what’s happening to the black community on a macro level is also happening on a micro level.