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Black History Month 2014

To celebrate Black History Month, Planned Parenthood is honoring 98 leaders from the African Diaspora —one for each year since Planned Parenthood was founded.   

The achievements of the Top 98 Dream Keepers range from the transformative leadership of Debra Lee to the tart and humor of comedian Wanda Sykes, from in-the-trenches HIV/AIDS awareness and advocacy work of Pastor Touré Roberts to the glamorous Hollywood milieu of Nia Long.  Whether they are whispering, singing, preaching, writing, or rallying for justice, their work helps us connect to each other.  Their leadership inspires us to break down barriers to health care and opportunity posed by poverty, racism, and sexism.  

Above all, these 98 role models demonstrate that we are stronger together.  Planned Parenthood and the black community have a strong history of working together to increase opportunity and access to health care for everyone.  

As we continue the fight for critical access to health care and opportunity for all Americans, let us pause and salute these leaders who give us strength and inspiration. Stronger together, we fight to protect against dangerous legislation that is harmful to women and families, and deny access to critical services.  Stronger together, we partner with young black women and men, who are the next generation of leaders in the movement for reproductive freedom.  Stronger together, we are educating Americans about the benefits of the new health care law, which makes health insurance more affordable for millions of people who are uninsured and provides new benefits for all Americans.  Stronger together, we are fighting to end racial health disparities and for the community to be the healthiest it can be.

Note: The individuals on this list were selected by Planned Parenthood Federation of America in recognition of their public accomplishments.  Inclusion on this list does not imply an endorsement of, or affiliation with, Planned Parenthood by any individual listed.

Black-History-Month-powerplayers-thumb.pngThe Power Players – Even when they’ve reached the top of the corporate hierarchy, our Power Players have not forgotten their roots.  

Black-History-Month-storytellers-thumb.pngThe Story Tellers – Our community’s Storytellers not only report what’s going on in the world, they put race, gender, and social justice at the center.

Black-History-Month-gatekeepers-thumb.pngThe Gate Keepers – Faith-based activists use their ministries to raise awareness about sexuality education; challenges faced by lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer folks; and the right of all Americans to access health care. 

Black-History-Month-doers-thumb.pngThe Do'ers – These Doers are essential for increasing opportunity and health care access in the black community.

Black-History-Month-tastemakers-thumb.pngThe Tastemakers – Our community’s Tastemakers address our hopes and concerns, delivering our messages to millions.

Black-History-Month-defenders-thumb.pngThe Defenders – We have a long history of public engagement—fighting for suffrage, integration, and health care—and we need our Defenders to advance our causes.