NNPA Newswire ,
The National Newspaper Publishers Association Fund (NNPAF) BLACK PRESS WEEK honored the George Floyd Family and House Majority Whip James E. Clyburn (D-SC) with the Newsmaker of the Year Award for Leadership during its two-day virtual conference Thursday, March 18, 2021.
The NNPAF recognized the Floyd Family for their collective effort for social justice, and their leadership on the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act recently passed in the U.S. House of Representatives.
Majority Whip James E. Clyburn, a former publisher and the highest-ranking African American in Congress, received the Newsmaker of the Year Award for his pivotal role in galvanizing the black vote across America.
NNPA Fund Chair Pluria Marshall Jr., CEO of the Wave Publications, based in California, stated, “These two awardees are dedicated to advancing the progress of black people. The Black Press of America is honored to recognize their achievements and express our gratitude for their heroic efforts to improve the quality of life of all Americans.”
This year’s virtual Black Press Week theme is “BLACK BUSINESS Challenges, Responsibilities and Opportunities Amidst COVID-19 Pandemic.
Reportedly, 40% of black-owned businesses have closed their doors permanently as a result of the pandemic. The challenge now is to sustain the remaining 60% struggling to survive during these uncertain times. Black newspapers are black businesses that are experiencing similar obstacles created by COVID-19.
Because of this shared burden, the NNPA Fund’s workshop Thursday featured Congressman Clyburn and U.S. Congressman Dwight Evans (D-PA), a member of the Small Business Committee and ranking member of the Subcommittee on Economic, Growth and Capital Access. The two high-ranking legislators addressed the plan which Congress is developing to help black-owned businesses cope with various economic issues.
On Friday, the second workshop will concentrate on alternative funding for black newspapers, including representatives from digital companies including Google, Facebook and Borealis, that invest in non-profit and for-profit media organizations.
The cornerstone of Black Press Week is the Enshrinement Ceremony. This year, Carter Walker Wesley (1892-1969), an American lawyer, newspaperman, and political activist from Houston, Texas, will be enshrined in the Black Press Archives and Gallery of Distinguished Black Publishers housed at the Moreland Spingarn Research Center at Howard University.
Black Press Week is held annually to honor the nation’s first black-owned newspaper – Freedom’s Journal – first published March 16, 1827. Previous NNPAF Newsmakers of the Year include Attorney Ben Crump, Civil Rights Activist Al Sharpton, Senator Kamala Harris, Senator Barack Obama, the Trayvon Martin family and many more.