February was Black History Month, and to celebrate my colleagues Council President Herb Wesson, Councilmember Marqueece Harris-Dawson, and Councilmember Curren Price joined me in bringing together hundreds of girls from throughout Los Angeles to a special private screening of Hidden Figures. The movie was nominated for three Academy Awards, including Best Picture. It depicts the real-life story of three African American women who were instrumental in the early days of the United States’ space exploration program.
Prior to the screening, we had a brief program to introduce the girls to local women of color who have successful careers in the engineering and technological fields. There was a brief question-and-answer period with Los Angeles Board of Public Works Commissioner Luz Rivas and Snapchat’s Carinne Johnson.
Each girl who attended was given a goodie-bag of supplies related to science and math when she left the theater.
My goal was to bring together young people and inspire more girls to get interested and seek out careers in math and science. During Black History Month, it was a great opportunity to highlight the success and inspirational stories of the women who helped shape the early days at NASA as role models for the girls of Los Angeles.