Oakland County’s First Juneteenth Panel Offers Insight on Moving Black Community ‘From Moment to Movement’

Two of Oakland County’s top leaders and community members highlighted the progress made by Black Americans and the ongoing challenge of achieving freedom and liberation in the 156 years since enslaved people in Galveston, Texas, learned the Civil War had ended during a virtual gathering held earlier this month.   

The occasion; a panel discussion titled, “Juneteenth: Then and Now,” highlighted the continued presence of racism in America and challenged the notion that Black Americans had already accomplished justice at a time when police brutality, health disparities and other systemic challenges persist in the United States.   

The panel, which streamed live Thursday, June 17 on Facebook, called attention to the history of Black citizens in the U.S. and challenged the community to consider how past events continue to influence the present-day realities for Black Americans.  

Leaders from education, public health, and racial justice organizations joined Oakland County Executive Dave Coulter and the county’s Diversity, Equity and Inclusion officer, Robin Carter-Cooper, for a passionate 90-minute discussion inspired by Juneteenth.  

Watch now:

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David Coulter Builds Oakland County’s Future Now in 2021 State of the County Speech

Oakland County Executive David Coulter stands on a stage delivering the 2021 State of the County Address

Oakland County Executive David Coulter Celebrates Resilience of Residents, Employees, and Businesses During Pandemic

Oakland County Executive Dave Coulter declared his vision for building Oakland County’s future now in the aftermath of the COVID-19 pandemic during his 2021 State of the County address Wednesday evening. It included an announcement that the Oakland80 initiative, geared to leading our state in getting 80 percent of the county’s adults a college education or certificate training by 2030, will kick off later this year by providing navigators and success coaches to help residents plot out their career goals.

“We don’t need to wait for the end of this pandemic to build our future. We must start now, “ said Coulter, who premiered his annual speech on social media from Stagecrafters at the Baldwin Theater in Royal Oak without an in-person audience present due to coronavirus precautions. “The Oakland80 program will get underway this summer and will fan out across the county to give residents the assistance they need to complete college credits or skilled training programs.”

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How To Watch: Oakland 2021 State Of The County Address

The 2021 Oakland County State of The County address will air next week on Wednesday, May 19th, at 7 p.m. from Stagecrafters at the Baldwin Theater in Royal Oak in a virtual format in order to comply with Coronavirus precautions.

Oakland County Executive David Coulter will speak to the resilience of Oakland County’s people, employees and businesses as they’ve endured 14 months of living with COVID-19, perhaps the most challenging public health and economic crisis of our lifetime. His look ahead will include how his administration is building Oakland County’s future now and the county’s priorities for investing its $244 million share of the American Rescue Plan.

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Experience the #OaklandTogether COVID-19 Tribute Walk at Waterford Oaks County Park

Now until March 21st, experience an immersive light display at Waterford Oaks County Park that pays homage to those we’ve lost to the COVID-19 pandemic, gives thanks to the people who have continued to risk their lives in the face of the coronavirus to keep us healthy and safe, and expresses gratitude for all of those who have helped us through the last year during the #OaklandTogether COVID-19 Tribute Walk.

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Share your Stories with the Oakland Together COVID-19 Tribute Maps

We have all seen the impact of the coronavirus pandemic. A year ago, our lives started changing and life as we knew it was fundamentally altered from how it used to be.

As the county looks back at the last year of living with the COVID-19 pandemic, we want to recognize and pay tribute to the sacrifice and resilience of Oakland County residents and honor the collective pain and loss that has touched our lives

Oakland County has created a pair of virtual story maps that embody the spirit of Oakland Together with both the gratitude we’ve felt for big and small acts of kindness from our friends, neighbors, family, co-workers and strangers as well as the grief and loss many of us have experienced from deaths from the coronavirus.

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