At its first annual black history banquet on Feb. 15, the QC chapter of the National Association of Black Accountants highlighted the accomplishments of African-Americans throughout history. The event stressed the importance of celebrating black history year round, and not just in February.
Led by NABA president Bensky Belizaire and Vice President Edem Ekpe, the banquet highlighted the achievements of African-Americans as a part of the trivia segment of the night. Quizzing members on several trivia questions pertaining to black history and audience members were given a chance to guess answers, followed by a brief biography of the notable person the question asked about.
The list of illustrious people in United States history were mentioned, including the first African American justice of the US Supreme Court, Thurgood Marshall, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Colin Powell, and president, Barack Obama.
During the second segment the audience was split into teams and competed to guess which song was being played. The music ranged from the early 1970s to the present day. The table with the most points was allowed to be the first group at the banquet table.
NABA’s executive board members told how their NABA journeys began, with each member noting that former NABA President Nigel Barker played a crucial role in their lives.
Barker, who restarted QC’s NABA chapter, graduated in 2017 and currently works as an analyst at JP Morgan Chase.
“People tell me that I’m a joy to be around, and that I’m the first to come in the office and the last to leave,” Barker said. “Those are some of the things that you can one hundred percent control to better yourself— not only in your career but also in all aspects of everyday life.”
Barker strived to the drive the point that there are a number of things in one’s life that a person can control, and whatever you cannot take charge of in your life isn’t worth stressing over.
The night ended with the club’s advisor, Professor Denise Miller, sharing stories about the people in her life who inspired her. They included her grandmothers and her father, who returned to school in their sixties. Miller emphasized that, although it is normal to be inspired by celebrities, there are people close to you that can also hold important roles in your life and aspirations.
“We all have inspirational people around us all the time, whether they’re in our family or just friends, and since we know them on a personal basis as opposed to celebrities whom we’ve never met, they should be the ones who motivate us to do better,” Miller said.