BELLEVUE, WASH. -- Bellevue Community College's Black Student Union presents two acclaimed hip-hop artists, an internationally-noted hip-hop scholar and a Washington state legislator with expertise in civic responsibility and social change, in a series of four free, public Black History Month lectures Feb. 17 – 25.
Mohammed Bilal, Tues., Feb. 17, 10:30 a.m., Room N201
Noted poet, musician, writer and activist Mohammed Bilal will speak on Tuesday, Feb. 17, at 10:30 a.m. in room 201 of the BCC's N Building, on the college's main campus.
Bilal is recognized as one of the nation's top diversity consultants, emphasizing ways to incorporate social justice and equity into one's daily life. But he is perhaps most widely known as "the even-tempered, dread-locked rapper guy" on MTV's Real World III: San Francisco.
Bilal has performed with such top musical artists as Santana and The Ohio Players, among many others. His hip-hop band, "Midnight Voices," has toured worldwide and won numerous awards, while his first solo album, "beatbox metafiction," is viewed by many as groundbreaking for its lyrics and use of world music.
Boots Riley, Wed., Feb. 18, 12:30 p.m., Room N201
Boots Riley, a well-known hip-hop leader and proponent of social change, will speak at BCC at 12:30 p.m. on Feb. 18, in Room N201.
Riley has been an integral part of the struggle for radical change through culture since age 15, beginning with grass-roots student organizing in California public schools and continuing with membership in the Progressive Labor Party and working on anti-police brutality campaigns.
Co-founder of the award-winning political hip-hop group, "The Coup," Riley is also a member of the Mau Mau Rhythm Collective, a group of artists and activists who use hip-hop to promote political change.
Riley has been featured in international media and interviewed on numerous television programs, including Bill Maher's "Politically Incorrect" and Fox News' "Hannity and Colmes."
State Rep. Eric Pettigrew (D- 37th District), Thurs., Feb. 19, 9:30 a.m., Room C120
Eric Pettigrew, currently Chairman of the Washington State House of Representatives' Health and Human Services Appropriations Committee, will speak on civic responsibility and social change in a 9:30 a.m. presentation Feb. 19, in Room 120 of the C Building on BCC's main campus.
Pettigrew represents the state's 37th legislative district, which includes much of southeast Seattle and parts of Renton. His long history of public service in the Puget Sound area also includes work with Child Protective Services, Seattle Emergency Management and the Seattle Mayor's Office.
The recipient of numerous awards for civic engagement, Pettigrew currently serves as president of the Rainier Chamber of Commerce, as a board member of ACT Theater, and as coach of Little League baseball and basketball.
His stated legislative priorities include Child and Family Services and Economic Development.
Prof. Tricia Rose, Thurs., Feb. 26, 3 p.m. Room N201
Dr. Tricia Rose, Professor of Africana Studies at Brown University and one of the world's top scholars on hip-hop culture and politics, will speak at BCC at 3 p.m. on Feb. 26.
The event will be held in room 201 of the college's N Building.
Rose is perhaps best known for her ground-breaking book on the emergence of hip-hop culture, Black Noise: Rap Music and Black Culture in Contemporary America, which is considered a foundational text for hip-hop studies.
In her recently-released book, "The Hip Hop Wars: What We Talk about When We Talk Hip Hop – and Why it Matters," Rose calls for a return to progressive and political hip-hop that speaks of truth and complexity in relation to Black culture.
A widely-engaged scholar, Rose is frequently featured as an expert commentator on National Public Radio and other national and local radio and TV outlets. Her work also can be found in magazines and newspapers such as Time, Essence, The New York Times and The Village Voice.