Black History Month Speaker
Black History Month Speaker
The story of black history is the story of world history told through the eyes of those who have seen the best and the worst of human nature. It is a story of oppression, yes, but also one of exploration and innovation and ultimately one of transcendence and triumph. The speaker you choose for your black history month event should reflect all of these aspects of the black experience and more.
Black History Month was recognised by President Ford in the US for the idea to make its way to the UK. Stirred to action by what he perceived as an identity crisis that was endemic among black British children a Ghanian activist named Akyaaba Addai-Sebo convinced Ken Livingstone, at the time leader of the Greater London Council, to import the idea from the US in 1987 and adapt it to focus on significant contributions of black British citizens.
It was decided to celebrate British Black History Month in October because that month marks the start of a new academic calendar. The idea was to maximise engagement with young minds as soon as they returned from summer holiday in order to produce an awareness that would stay with them throughout the school year.
Today, British Black History Month is marked by literally thousands of events of all sizes and types right across the UK, many of which hire speakers like Bianca Miller to provide background, context and inspiration to both the present and the upcoming generations of black British leaders.
EY Race and Ethnicity Network Leadership Team | Championing D&I in Recruitment | Student Recruitment Events Advisor at EY
April 17, 2021,
I have worked with Bianca for a second time now, and I know this will not be the last. In our most recent interaction, Bianca delivered a couple of workshops for undergraduates. Her professionalism, energy and creativity that she brings to the table is exactly what I admire about her. She listens to the client ask and then feeds into that with relevant and valuable inputs - what more do you want! Her delivery of the skills workshops are always energetic, refreshing and leave you self-reflecting on how to better yourself as an individual. Thank you, Bianca!
Taravat Taher-Zadeh (Brass)
Natwest Accelerator Programme
Business Growth & Transformation Portfolio Professional
March 12, 2021,Dearest Bianca, I’m breathless with excitement (still!), a sheer joy hearing your wonderful marathon of a presentation at the NatWest International Women’s Day event. Many congratulations, wishing you even greater heights of success & look forward to hearing you again. Keep well & keep inspiring, my NBF! :-
Senior Business Consultant at CGI | Chair of Women's Network CGI UK
March 12, 2021,I reached out to Bianca to speak at the CGI Women's Network International Women's Day event and asked her to deliver an inspirational key note speech. From start to finish my interaction with Bianca did not disappoint. Bianca provided fast responses and all the information required in a timely manner. On the day, Bianca delivered a key note speech on her journey as an entrepreneur and shared her experiences and lessons learned. This speech was well received in CGI with lots of great feedback from the attendees. I particularly liked her "Top 3 Tips for Taking Ownership of Your Career Success" which I will certainly be applying for my own career! I thoroughly enjoyed working with Bianca and look forward to future engagements
Conor Donnellan MAPM
Senior Project Management Consultant at CGI
March 12, 2021,It was a great pleasure to hear about Bianca’s inspiring journey as a young woman in the business world as part of CGI’s international women’s day celebrations. I particularly enjoyed learning about building a personal brand, which has given me great insights on how I can improve my own personal brand and to mentor and coach others. On the theme of international women’s day, Bianca’s journey is one of facing challenge and overcoming obstacles. Bianca’s talk has definitely made me want to be more vigilant in recognising areas needing change and how personally I can make certain changes and challenge equalities to ensure the IT industry becomes more equal for women and everyone in general. Thank you again Bianca for your inspiring talk
Stacey Van Bergen
Senior Consultant at CGI | Co-Chair of the Women's Network
March 11, 2021,As part of International Women's Day, Bianca joined us (CGI) and delivered an inspiration talk on her career history, as well as giving tips on how to take ownership of your own career success, how to embrace challenges and be an intrapreneur in light of this years theme "Choose to Challenge". Bianca delivered in such an engaging and motivational way, I know I speak for all when I say I took away some really key messages that I can easily apply to my job, and personal life. Thank you Bianca, I look forward to working with you in future
Executive Assistant to President
March 10, 2021,I participated in the International Women's Day event lead by NatWest on the topic "Inspiring Confidence - Championing change". Bianca was one of the amazing speakers whom I had the opportunity to listen to. I couldn't stop smiling and loved your enthusiasm and the way you articulate your journey. Thank you for sharing your journey and experiences with u
CEO, Natwest Accelerator Programme ,
March 10, 2021,Incredible energy with a motivating and positive speech. Great to hear Bianca’s story- so engaging. Good to see a woman In business achieving great things. I can’t wait to read the book
Inclusion & Diversity Senior Manager - Commercial Banking - Lloyds Banking Group
March 9, 2021,You were INSPRATIONAL at the CMS IWD Career Ready event today Bianca Miller - Cole - if those girls don’t now know they can take on the world and succeed then they were not listening. I certainly felt fired up
Legal Secondee at Lloyds Banking Group
March 9, 2021,Bianca was a key note speaker for the CMS Masterclass 2021 for International Women’s Day and helped deliver the session. She spoke with over 60 students and we led a breakout room together to interact with a smaller group of students. She is very inspirational, motivated and it is brilliant to see her passion for helping the younger generation grow and develop
Business Development Manager Biorationals EMEA chez Sumitomo Chemical Agro Europe
March 1, 2021,I attended a talk on Intrapreneurship from Bianca recently. It was refreshing and inspiring. Bianca is great at making you look at things from a different angle, thinking about yourself as your own brand, and overall making you believe that there is not such a long way from a dream to become a reality. Thanks again Bianc
Global Strategic Accounts at Preqin
December 23, 2020,Bianca was a host during a Black History Month panel discussion to my company. She was extremely engaging and professional throughout the session, and gave really informative and inspiring advice on how to navigate the workplace and build one's personal brand. She has received great feedback from a number of my colleagues, and I would certainly recommend her to others. Thank you Bianca
Assistant Associate Deloitte
August 17, 2020,I attended a Zoom conference led by Bianca on building your personal brand - I loved it! I was able to utilise the tips and tricks that she provided for my LinkedIn page and overall internet presence. Her warm personality and inclusive nature made attending the conference an overall wonderful experience
Tax Analyst at Deloitte
August 5, 2020,Very systematic, simple, yet effective presentation on personal branding. I thoroughly enjoyed it and found Bianca very helpful and insightful
Analyst at Deloitte (Banking Analytics & Quantitative Modelling)
August 5, 2020,Bianca gave an enthusiastic interactive online webinar to myself and other graduates joining Deloitte. She enlightened us on how important it is to begin to build our personal brand, develop our social media accounts, and just how valuable any life experiences we have are! Bianca gave excellent feedback to us on giving “elevator pitches”, their importance, and how to present yourself in a concise and attractive manner
Solutions Engineer Apprentice, UKI Financial Services Team at Salesforce
July 24, 2020,Bianca is an excellent speaker. During my personal branding session with her, I gained invaluable knowledge which I now utilise in my everyday life. She has such a bubbly yet professional character which I admire. She is self motivated and always encourages those around her. I really enjoyed my session, thanks Bianca
Director at Google, UK & Ireland
July 8, 2020,Bianca came and gave a talk to my team, and was an inspiration! I loved how Bianca shared her own personal story, then gave practical ideas and steps to help others realise their career dreams. Bianca combined inspiration and entrepreneurialism with practical advice, and was a delight to listen to
Growth @ Google
June 24, 2020,Bianca is great at communicating her journey giving people an insight into the experiences that have shaped the person she is today. Learning about her experiences and the lessons she picked up along the way was amazing and definitely impactful for myself and everyone else that was listening in
Associate Account Strategist at Google
June 24, 2020,I attended Bianca's workshops as an undergrad as part of an insight week for Women in Tech a couple of years back and have been fortunate enough to attend one again recently! You're workshops on personal branding really stuck with me, so much so I spoke about them in interviews and to colleagues and friends
Mohammad M Lone
Digital Strategist at Google | One Young World Ambassador
June 24, 2020,Bianca is an incredibly inspirational individual. Having been fortunate enough to witness her public speaking, she has given me and my colleagues so much to think about when it comes to owning my career success
Senior Content Manager at Retail Week
June 19, 2020,Bianca gave an online talk to our 2000-strong audience of retailers. It was brilliant, thought provoking and full of actionable insight. She was very personable while also being a total professional, both in front of the audience and behind the scenes. The feedback for her session was brilliant. I hope to be able to work with her again
Corporate Engagement Officer at Melton Borough Council
May 18, 2020,Bianca was very professional but also had a great human nature. She was a brilliant addition to my event & those that attended noted how inspiring her presentation was. She kept to the brief and added snippets of humour during the keynote whilst talking about her own lived experiences. I would certainly book her again and would recommend her work to anyon
Award-Winning Strategic Sourcing Expert -Centrica
March 31, 2020,What an inspiring speaker you are, and you really kept your cool in spite of the slide issues... Qdos to you. Everyone in Centrica found your teachings very useful, so thank you for joining our International Women's Day event and celebrating diversity with us. I'm Centrica's Fertility Ambassador so if you ever need ideas or support in that space, please think of me 🙏 I'd be more than happy happy to collaborate. Best wishe
March 29, 2020,Bianca delivered an excellent interactive talk on personal branding and networking. She had presented great points as to how to make a great first impression. The session was extremely engaging and I would say it’s perfect for any field. Even in this current climate I now know what steps to take to add value for myself and others
March 28, 2020,Inspirational and very practical, Bianca’s talk on Personal Branding and Networking was delivered in a professional and well thought out manner. She really taught me the techniques on how best to convey to someone that you are a person of value, in a quick and concise manner with her detailed elevator pitch. Furthermore she explained the dynamics of networking in a very easy and digestible way. Great speaker, and a clear expert in her field. Highly recommend her
Software Engineer Travellers
March 28, 2020,Bianca is an excellent speaker who is very knowledgeable in her field. She is truly an example and inspiration to all women
AWS re/Start Graduate at Generation UK & Ireland
March 27, 2020,A highly enjoyable and interactive session to identify my unique personal qualities and skills to increase my success with networking for a job, even with the limitations currently in place. Bianca was inspirational to keep aiming towards personal career goals, breaking them down into a list of achievable objectives
HR Shared Service Coordinator Nottingham Trent University
March 23, 2020,Bianca was the keynote speaker for our International Women’s Day conference at Nottingham Trent University. It was inspirational to hear about her journey before, during and after The Apprentice. She was an extremely engaging and powerful speaker for the event and a great role model for students, she really showed us what hard work and a positive attitude can do
HUANG XIAO QIN (LUNA)
Social Media Intern at MRZ Business Services LTD
March 14, 2020,Bianca is such an inspirational and successful female role model for me. I was inspired by her "dreams to reality" speech and would follow the "7 steps to making your dreams a reality" to pursue my dreams! (Thank you very much and very honored to meet you, Bianca!!
Transformation Specialist at Centrica
March 9, 2020,Bianca is an engaging and professional speaker, who is great to work with
Robin VanMeter, MBA
Sr. Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Partner, Centrica
March 4, 2020,Bianca Miller is a great speaker and has an incredible story to tell. She encourages individuals to be all they can be and how to successfully focus on self branding
Diversity & Inclusion, Centrica
March 4, 2020,Thank you Bianca Miller - Cole for your amazing keynote at Centrica today! A fresh take on intrapreneurship and personal brand. Today was my light bulb moment and I’m sure many others experienced the same! It has been a pleasure and I look forward to working with you again
Steve Keith- EY
Simone White- Blackrock EEPA
Jasmin Jalloh- Accenture UK
Taj Singh- Bucks New University Student
Bianca Mcdonald – Founder of Kids Zone Adventures
Lauren Pak – Accenture Technology Analyst
Emma Bortnik- Knowledge Transfer Network
Jo Bromilow- Publicasity
James Wilson -Attendee of the Business Travel Conference
Self Made Mentee
Accenture September Schemes
City Lit- International Womens Day
The Multidimensional Story of Black History
The story of black history is often bookended by the outrageous of the slave trade and the 20th-century struggle for civil rights. And while those are certainly important aspects of the black experience there is much more to the story that needs to be explored.
Your black history month speaker should embody the courage and fortitude of her ancestors while also being a living, breathing example of the possibilities open to black entrepreneurs in the 21st century. She should speak as much to the future as to the past and be grounded firmly in the here and now. She should also be able to engage her audience from the minute she appears and leave them enlightened and inspired.
About Black History Month
While we tend to take Black History Month for granted today it’s important to remember that this annual, month-long recognition of the massive contributions of black people to the history of the UK wasn’t always part of the calendar. Even in the US, where the idea has its roots, it is a relatively new celebration.
The history of Black History Month can be traced back more than a century to Cambridge, Massachusetts in the US where, in 1915, a 39 year old African American historian – and only the 2nd African American to earn a doctorate from Harvard University – named Carter Woodson established the Association for the Study of Negro Life and History (ASNLH). His forward-looking organisation dedicated itself to researching and telling the story of black history and culture.
As time passed Woodson became convinced that celebrating black history should be an annual, nationwide event. Using the vernacular of the day he dubbed his celebration “Negro History Week” and pressed to have teachers coordinate lessons regarding black history with this weeklong event, which he determined should take place the 2nd week in February each year.
Why February? Woodson chose this particular month to celebrate black history because both the great African American abolitionist, orator and statesman Frederick Douglass and President Abraham Lincoln, author of the Emancipation Proclamation which freed the slaves on in 1863, were born in February.
By the mid-1960s the struggle for civil rights had shone a spotlight on Woodson’s idea and more and more states and municipalities around the country began to embrace it. By the time of the US bicentennial in 1976, it had grown to a month-long celebration which was officially recognised by President Gerald Ford. Ford exhorted Americans to: “…seize the opportunity to honour the too-often neglected accomplishments of black Americans in every area of endeavour throughout our history.”
How to Choose the Perfect Black History Month Speaker
Besides finding someone with an engaging manner and a compelling story there are a couple of other things to look for when choosing a speaker for your black history month event.
They should have experience that is relevant to your industry
Many speakers can give lengthy and interesting talks about the contribution of black actors to the Shakespearean stage or to the political life of the UK in the 19th century. But what does that have to do with your business? You want someone who is going to speak the same language as the audience, and if they can somehow find connections between your industry and the Shakespearean stage, that’s great, but it’s a secondary consideration.
They should be able to weave their own story into their talk
Even more important than being able to infuse a talk with historical titbits is the ability of a speaker to weave their own history and experience into their black history month talk. So before selecting an individual to anchor your event, look into their background, find out what you can about their personal journey and see what others are saying about them. If they have personal experience – good or bad – with diversity in the workspace and the challenges facing the black community in the 2020s, and they can weave those experiences into the larger discussion, they will create an indelible bond with the audience and your event will be the talk of the industry.
Contact Bianca Miller-Cole Today
Bianca Miller-Cole is the very embodiment of the contemporary black experience. A successful entrepreneur, personal brand expert and rising media star who has transcended obstacles, burst through barriers and carved out a niche for herself in the zeitgeist. If you want your black history month event to shine, get in touch with Bianca today by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or calling 02086679519.