Cheick Modibo Diarra
Diarra is a Malian-born aerospace engineer who contributed to several NASA missions such as Mars Path Finder, the Galileo spacecraft and the Mars Observer. From April 2012 to December 2012, Diarra was the prime minister of Mali until a military coup forced him to resign.
Cheikh Anta Diop
Diop was a Senegalese historian, anthropologist, physicist and politician. His work focused on pre-colonial African history. Throughout his career, Diop studied racial phenotypes and wrote many books about his findings. There is also an university in Senegal named after him.
Benjamin Banneker was born Nov. 9, 1731, and died Oct. 9, 1806. His parents were free Blacks living near Baltimore. He was an astronomer, scientist, inventor, abolitionist and farmer.
Banneker was self-educated, with handed-down textbooks as his resources. His white grandmother taught him how to read at an early age before attending a small Quaker school for a brief time.
Benjamin Banneker (Nov. 9, 1731 – Oct. 9, 1806)
Banneker was an astronomer, mathematician and author who constructed America’s first functional clock. In the early days of the U.S., Banneker was a prominent abolitionist working with Thomas Jefferson on improving the lives of Black people in this nation. He was also one of the few people to help survey the borders of Washington, D.C.
Dr. Daniel Hale Williams (Jan. 18, 1858 – Aug. 4, 1931)
Williams performed the first prototype open-heart surgery. He also was the second surgeon to perform a pericardium surgery to repair a wound. In 1891, he created one of the first non-segregated hospitals in the U.S. He called it Provident Hospital and it was located in Chicago.
Physicist Ronald L. Mallett is actively working on building the world’s first functioning time machine. Mallett published an autobiography called “Time Traveler: A Scientist’s Personal Mission to Make Time Travel a Reality” about his journey to becoming one of the first Black Ph.D.s in theoretical physics, all inspired by his quest to build a time machine in order to travel back in time and save his father from death. Filmmaker Spike Lee’s production company Forty Acres and a Mule acquired the film rights to Mallett’s book in 2008, but the film was never made. Fortunately, Mallett has shared his amazing story and ongoing journey in several documentaries and educational specials available on YouTube.
Rasheedah Phillips is a Philadelphia public interest attorney, speculative fiction writer, the creator of The AfroFuturist Affair, and a founding member of Metropolarity.net. She recently independently published her first speculative fiction collection, “Recurrence Plot (and Other Time Travel Tales).”