Kicking off our insights spotlight for Black History Month is our Edmonton Office Administrator, Ella! She answered a few questions about inspiration that she takes away from black leaders in history and more.
Who is your most inspirational black leader in Canadian history and why?
“Viola Desmond was an incredibly courageous and driven woman. Arrested in 1946 for sitting in the wrong section of a segregated theatre, her case later made it all the way to the Supreme Court, where she was found guilty. Her official charges were “defrauding the Canadian government of $0.01” as her ticketed section was 1 cent cheaper than the section she chose to sit in. In 2010 the Lieutenant Governor of Nova Scotia (a black woman) finally posthumously granted Ms. Viola a pardon. This amazing woman would eventually end up on the $10 Canadian Bill.
”What is your favourite black movie or TV show and why?
“Scandal and How to Get Away with Murder. Both shows feature a fearless black protagonist that paves the way, fighting for others while also fighting their own personal battles (including racial discrimination). Both Kerry Washington and Viola Davis breathe life into their respective characters. Creator and producer of both shows, Shonda Rhimes, is one of the best producers I have ever seen, and as an African-American woman, I can only hope she gets all the opportunities to educate people through her work.
”What is your favourite black-owned business?
“My favourite black business would have to be ChefKeysh on TikTok. He is a small-time chef that creates content out of his kitchen. I love him because I am someone who hates to cook and his recipes are always so easy and fun to follow. Also doesn’t hurt that his apron is from my favourite anime series.”