Nothing will motivate a man to move forward faster than knowing what's behind Him.


1. John Jones, apprentice tailor, writer, and politician.

2. Stephen Theobald, journalist, priest, lawyer, and community activist.

3. Anna Arnold Hedgeman, First woman to serve in the cabinet of a NY mayor

4. Smiley Lewis, New Orleans rhythm and blues musician. The journalist, Tony Russell, in his book The Blues – From Robert Johnson to Robert Cray, stated “Lewis was the unluckiest man in New Orleans. He hit on a formula for slow-rocking, small-band numbers like “The Bells Are Ringing” and “I Hear You Knocking” only to have Fats Domino come up behind him with similar music more ingratiatingly delivered. Lewis was practically drowned in Domino’s backwash”.

5. John Youie Woodruff, athlete, teacher, and military officer. Winner of the 800 metre run at the 1936 Summer Olympics.

6. Naomi Long Madgett, teacher and an award winning poet, writer, and editor. senior editor of Lotus Press, which is a publisher of poetry books by black poets.

7. Judge Joe Brown, judge and host of a court show which shares his name. Raised in Los Angeles, California, Brown earned a bachelor’s degree in political science and a Juris Doctor (J.D.) degree at UCLA, before moving to Memphis, Tennessee in 1974.

8. RZA (Robert Fitzgerald Diggs), Grammy winning music producer, author, rapper, and occasional actor, director, and screenwriter. A prominent figure in hip hop music, he is the de facto leader of the Wu-Tang Clan. He has produced almost all of Wu-Tang Clan’s albums as well as many Wu-Tang solo and affiliate projects. He subsequently gained attention for his work scoring and acting in films.

9. Joe (Joseph Lewis Thomas), R&B singer and record producer.

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