About Blacks in Science

The Blacks in Science initiative is a collaborative effort between the Forest Park Southeast Development Corporation and the Saint Louis Science Center.  It began as a vision of its founder, Irving Blue, to have an event to unite African Americans from various science and math disciplines to celebrate their accomplishments. The outcome of the event would address the need to increase minority participation in science in an engaging atmosphere where youth could be impacted.

In 2007, more than 200 guests participated in the inaugural Blacks in Science Awards Dinner. This event highlighted the lifetime achievements of St. Louis scientist Dr. Lincoln Diuguid, known for his extensive medical research and scientific contributions to major corporations such as Johnson Wax and BF Goodrich.  In 2008, the 2nd annual Blacks in Science Awards Dinner will feature Dr. Toni Hoover, Vice President and Development Site Head at Pfizer Global Research and Development – Groton/New London Laboratories. We are pleased to announce that Arnold W. Donald, President and CEO of Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation, is the 2008 program chair.

This event serves as a catalyst to expose, facilitate dialogue, and establish solutions to increase minority communities participating in science. This purpose of this partnership is to expose African American and disadvantaged youth to the wonders of science. As well as, provide available funding sources to alleviate some of the economic burdens of pursuing science-related academia and careers.

There are ongoing events throughout the year that support the Blacks in Science mission. An example of these programs is the 2nd Annual “Education is the Key” Scholarship event held on Wednesday, October 31st, 2007 at the St. Louis Science Center’s James McDonnell Planetarium; proceeds support the “Education is the Key” scholarship located at St. Louis Community College at Forest Park.  This alternative to traditional Halloween activities offered several educational and engaging activities for all of the guests, a Star Show, refreshments, showcased the incredible costumes worn by many of the children in attendance.  It was an incredible turn out with over 350 participating trick-or-treaters.

The Blacks in Science project is working to demystify science and technology and eliminate the stigma preventing blacks from embracing science as an interest and ultimately as a career.  We believe that we must educate the next African American generation about the existing opportunities in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. And, to celebrate the achievements of those who have succeeded in the industry.