Groups celebrate and commemorate June 19
June 19the new federal holiday, commemorates the final liberation of slaves on June 19, 1865, two years after the signing of the Emancipation Proclamation.
Because the new Federal Holidays Act has been promulgated so close to the official celebration last year, many organizations did not have the opportunity to recognize the holiday in 2021. However, with plenty of time to plan this year, associations and other nonprofits are honoring Juneteenth in multiple ways. Here’s a look at how a handful commemorates the occasion:
The Juneteenth Foundation celebrated Juneteenth with a four day freedom day June 16-19. The festival includes an honorary gala; golf tournament; Block Party; and a discussion on diversity, equity and inclusion combined with a job fair. “More people than ever want to work for employers with a proven dedication to DE&I, so our goal is to make matching easier on an historic scale,” said Laquan Austion, CEO and co-founder of the Juneteenth Foundation. “The fair will connect job seekers directly with companies committed to attracting diverse talent and will also allow companies to showcase their efforts to create a sustainably inclusive environment, so job seekers can be confident that their voice will be appreciated.”
Because Juneteenth is a relatively new holiday for many Americans, the Institute for Entrepreneurial Leadership helps people with suggestions on how to celebrate. For example, the IFEL encourage people [pdf] making the most of the holidays by hanging out with black businesses. “Juneteenth is a missed opportunity if it becomes just another day off,” says Jill Johnson, CEO and co-founder of IFEL. “Companies and individuals who truly value DEI should take this opportunity to engage in action that leads to economic freedom and inclusion for people who have been historically excluded. More individual action by more people individual leads to systemic change.
The Developmental Disabilities Providers Association held his June 16 inaugural celebration June 16. The virtual event included a keynote presentation from Inclusive Strategies CEO Waleska Lugo-DeJesus, which focused on difficult conversations in the workplace.
The Brewers Association Created a guide to help its members observe Juneteenth. With recent backlash over the corporatization of Juneteenth, the BA guide reminds members to “set the right tone” and “stay respectful of the complex legacy of slavery and its impact.” He also encourages members to invite their local community to participate in the celebrations.
The African American Business Association and the Joliet Chamber of Commerce will host a June 19 Gala, which will honor local CEOs “who show courage and perseverance in business while being a leader” in the community.
The Missouri State Historical Society shares its commemoration of Juneteenth online, with an “interactive digital empowerment day in the Ozarks of Missouri” exposure [PDF]. The online exhibit examines the significance of Juneteenth and other ways freedom has been celebrated by black people in Missouri. “Our interactive map documents the evolution of emancipation rallies in Missouri,” said Sean Rost, oral historian and project leader. “We hope people will take an interest in this map, not only to understand the origins of the federal June 19 holiday, but also how Missourians commemorated emancipation in the Ozarks.”
Founded in 1994, the Delaware June 19 Association, will continue its history of celebrating the party. He hosted a series of events this month versus Juneteenth and will continue to do so. Upcoming are the June 19 celebration on June 19, a festival on June 20, and a pageant and talent show on June 26 and 29.