The City of Calgary’s Anti-Racism Team puts a spotlight on Black History Month

For the first time, The City’s Anti-Racism Program Team will be observing Black History Month with three virtual presentations from Feb. 9 - 28, open to all Calgarians. The COVID-safe presentations will provide a view on the observance of Black History Month under The City of Calgary’s theme: Health and Wellness of Black Lives in the Past, Present, and Future.

“This is an opportunity to address systemic racism, the residual effects of colonization, and its implications for the health and well-being of Black Albertans while also moving the discussion towards changing the future,” says Linda Kongnetiman, managing lead for The City’s Anti-Racism Program. “Our speakers will create the space for open conversations about the legacy and achievements of Black people in Canada and elsewhere.”

The keynote speaker for the launch of the events is Dr. Carl James, who holds the Jean Augustine Chair in Education, Community and Diaspora in the Faculty of Education at York University. Dr. James carries on the legacy of Dr. Jean Augustine, who single-handedly championed the unanimous vote to designate February as Black History Month in Canada. 

The celebration will include welcome remarks from Mayor Jyoti Gondek, City councillors, City of Calgary leaders, the Anti-Racism Action Committee, Black professionals from Calgary and Ghana, and The City’s Anti-Racism Team members. Everyone is invited to participate in Black History Month festivities and events that honour Black Canadians' legacy and their communities. Visit for event schedules and links:

Wed., Feb. 9, 2 p.m. – 3:45 p.m.    
Why a Black History Month? Shouldn’t we be past this by now?
Opening remarks: Mayor Jyoti Gondek
Facilitator: Feisal Kirumira, Anti-Racism Program public safety lead
Keynote speaker: Dr. Carl James, holds the Jean Augustine Chair in Education, Community and Diaspora in the Faculty of Education at York University. Read full bio

Mon. Feb. 14, 11 a.m. – 12:15 p.m. 
Teaching African History
Facilitator: Dr. Khwezi Mbolekwa, Anti-Racism Program organizational leadKeynote speaker: Dr. George Sefa Dei is a renowned educator, researcher, and writer who is considered by many as one of Canada’s foremost scholars on race and anti-racism studies. Read full bio

Mon. Feb. 28, 5 p.m. – 6:15 p.m.
Mental Health of Black Canadians and Black Immigrants in Alberta
Facilitator: Dr. Linda Kongnetiman, Anti-Racism Program managing lead
Keynote speaker: Dr. Bukola Salami is an Associate Professor at the Faculty of Nursing, University of Alberta. Her research program focuses on policies and practices shaping migrant health. Read full bio

Black History Month is one of the ways The City of Calgary is beginning to address systemic racism in the organization and the wider community. For more information on the work of the Anti-Racism Program Team visit