Updated: Jul 9, 2021
BESAC Communication Officer's Message
In this issue of the BESAC digest we recognize our new National Holiday Juneteenth. Originating in Galveston, Texas, it has been celebrated annually on June 19 in various parts of the United States since 1865. The day was recognized as a federal holiday on June 17, 2021, when President Joe Biden signed the Juneteenth National Independence Day Act into law.
BESAC Communications Officer
Cal Alumni Association Update
UC Berkeley Alumni Celebrate Juneteenth
In communities on campus at UC Berkeley and across the nation, Juneteenth is an opportunity for celebration. We honor the proud legacy of our Black ancestors throughout this nation’s history and come together in exultation of Black life.
In celebrating Juneteenth, we also ask our alumni community to reflect and to act. Reflect: On what we, individually and collectively, can do to further a just, equitable, and right United States of America. Act: Take real, visible steps toward this goal.
Berkeley is commemorating Juneteenth in many ways. A list of Berkeley-based resources for celebration, education, reflection, and action are HERE
UC Berkeley Black Staff & Faculty Organization Presents:
Juneteenth 2021 with Dr. LaGarrett King
UC Berkeley Webinar: American Reckoning: A Conversation on Anti-Blackness in Post George Floyd America
Facilitated by Professor Dr. Ula Taylor
Three amazing EECS alumnae were featured on the Berkeley 150W website in celebration of Black History Month 2021 : Arlene Cole-Rhodes (Ph.D. '89, advisor: Shankar Sastry), the first Black woman to earn a doctorate in Electrical Engineering from Berkeley; Melody Ivory (M.S. '96/Ph.D. '01, advisor: Marti Hearst), the first Black woman to earn a doctorate in Computer Science from Berkeley; and Valerie Taylor (Ph.D. '92, advisor: David Messerschmitt), the first Black Chair of the Department of Computer Science and Engineering at Texas A&M University.
Go to the Berkeley Black Graduate Engineering and Science Students Facebook page for highlights and updates.
Go to the Black Engineering and Science Student Association website for highlights and updates.
David Harold Blackwell (April 24, 1919 – July 8, 2010) was an American statistician and mathematician who made significant contributions to game theory, probability theory, information theory, and Bayesian statistics. He is one of the eponyms of the Rao–Blackwell theorem. He was the first African American inducted into the National Academy of Sciences, the first black tenured faculty member at the University of California, Berkeley, and the seventh African American to receive a Ph.D. in Mathematics.
Blackwell was also a pioneer in textbook writing. He wrote one of the first Bayesian textbooks, his 1969 Basic Statistics. By the time he retired, he had published over 90 books and papers on dynamic programming, game theory, and mathematical statistics.
Black Engineering and Science Faculty (BESF)
There is currently a historic number of Black Engineering and Science Faculty at Cal. Learn more about Black STEM faculty by checking out the Black Engineering and Science Faculty slides