Daily Archives: April 4, 2013

BLACK INVENTORS By Keith C. Holmes – A Must Read

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Black Inventors, Crafting Over 200 Years of Success identifies black inventors from five continents, over seventy countries, including almost all fifty states in the United States. Citing a number of black inventors from 1769 – 2007, this book is one of the most comprehensive works on black Inventors since Henry E. Baker’s research on Black inventors in the early 20th century.

Overall, the book shatters the ongoing myths about Africa whose history is limited to its continent’s colonial past, and about Africans who have contributed little to the development of world science, technology and agricultural innovations. Black Inventors demonstrates that the inventors, innovators, designers and labourers of African descent, in Africa as well as throughout the African Diaspora, were instrumental in the development of western technology.

Black Inventors, Crafting Over 200 Years of Success is available in over 800 national, state, university and public libraries (over 150), as well as in museums, schools and bookstores in 27 countries (primarily in North America). Black Inventors was selected as part of the reading list by the National Council of Teachers of English for the National African American Read-in since 2010.

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The author, Keith C. Holmes is of African-American, Native American and Jamaican ancestry.  In 1972, he went to the State University of New Jersey, New Brunswick as a Liberal Arts Major. In 1980, he earned a certificate in computer programming and system designs at the Control Data InstituteKeith Holmes was born in Queens, New York and lives in Brooklyn. He is married and is the father of four children, three of whom went to university; the youngest is aspiring to do the same.

He has spent more than twenty years researching information on inventions by Black people from Australia, Barbados, Canada, France, Germany, Ghana, Haiti, Jamaica, Kenya, Nigeria, South Africa, Trinidad and Tobago, just to name a few. For 25 years, he worked professionally in the satellite communications industry, and since 1977 he has worked with computers, from main frames to personal computers.

He has lectured in Barbados, California, Canada, Illinois, New York, Connecticut, New Jersey, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Virginia and Washington, DC. Holmes is currently working on several projects regarding Black inventors.  This book highlights the work of early black inventors from almost all fifty states in the United States.

The book cites famous inventors of color from around the world, giving librarians, teachers, students and parents a global view than can be included in African History, Black History Month and Caribbean History. Black Inventors documents a number of the inventions, patents and labor saving devices conceived by black inventors. It gives details about the first Black inventor who obtained a patent in both the Caribbean and the United States.

Africans, before the period of their enslavement, developed: agricultural tools, building materials, medicinal herbs, cloth and weapons, among many other inventions. Though millions of black people were brought to Canada, the Caribbean, Central and South America and the United States in chains and under the yoke of slavery, it is relatively unknown that thousands of Africans and their descendants developed numerous labor saving devices and inventions that spawned companies which generated money and jobs, worldwide.

The focus of this book is to introduce readers to the facts, that inventions created by black people, both past and present, were developed and patented on a global scale. This also means that there are inventors in every civilization whose ideas have been turned into inventions. In the past the focus has been on American and European inventors.

Today, the new giants in the patenting process are Brazil, China, India, Japan, Nigeria, South Africa and South Korea. Mr. Holmes documents the creativity of black women inventors from Africa, Canada, the Caribbean, the United Kingdom and the United States, and provides readers with a comprehensive view of the ground-breaking achievements of black inventors – both male and female.

This is one of the first books that address the diversity of black inventors and their inventions from a global perspective. The material available in this book is an introduction to the world of black inventors. It gives the reader, researcher, librarian, student, and teacher materials they needed to effectively understand that the Black inventor is not only a national phenomenon, but also a global giant.

For more information visit  http://www.globalblackinventor.com

Mercy Obeime, M.D “SERVING THE UNDERSERVED”.

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In January 2004, Mercy Obeime delivered about $800,000 of donated medicine and supplies to her homeland, Nigeria. That was during her ”spare time“ as director of the Mercy Foundation, a non–profit healthcare organization she and several classmates from medical school started in 2001 to help fight HIV—AIDS in Nigeria, which she confides is “a big, silent problem, with lots more out there.”

During her normal “nine–to–five” life and well beyond, of course, like the deeply caring family physician she is, Obeime can be found at the Saint Francis Neighborhood Health Center at Garfield Park, where she has served as Medical Director since 1996. She was nominated a Local Legend by Representative Julia Carson [D–IN–7].

In prior recognition of her dedication and commitment to the inner–city residents of Indianapolis, Obeime was chosen as a National Winner of the 2003 Spirit of Women Awards in the Healthcare category. She is committed to treating the whole person, regardless of ability to pay. “It is very important to treat people with compassion and dignity,” she says “to listen and find out what it is they want. Along with all the technology of American medicine, there is a need for faith and values, especially with older people.”

The Health Center is a family practice providing primary and preventive care to families who cannot afford health insurance and who are charged only what they can pay without compromising their financial integrity. During the past five years, the number of patients served has ballooned three times to 2,500, with almost 70 percent being uninsured.

“The Health Center has been a successful mission for Saint Francis,” says Obeime. “Saint Francis has made health care services more accessible to the Garfield Park community, especially to those individuals and families who don’t have insurance coverage. Every day we’re challenged to do more with limited resources, yet every day we see progress toward a healthier community.”

In addition to managing clinical operations, Obeime aggressively pursues the grants that keep the Center’s doors open. She was instrumental in the Center’s designation as a Hoosier Healthwise enrollment site, part of a state–funded health care insurance program for low-income families, pregnant women and children. With assistance from the Wishard Aesculapian Society for African American Physicians  she also helped institute a health care tracking system for indigents in the Indianapolis area.

She connects resources with under–served populations, seeking funding and treatment for all. In collaboration with the Marion County Health Department, the Saint Francis Neighborhood Health Center at Garfield Park operates a B.A.B.E. [Beds and Britches, Etc.] Store, part of an incentive program to encourage mothers to engage in healthy behavior. By participating in a variety of activities—prenatal exams, practical parenting classes, smoking cessation courses, well–baby and well–child check–ups and immunizations—mothers earn B.A.B.E. vouchers that can be exchanged for diapers, baby, car seats and even baby furniture.

Whether at home in Indianapolis or back home in Nigeria, Obeime’s strong commitment to public health enhances the quality of life for women, their children and families, and their communities.

This article originally appeared on http://www.nlm.nih.gov