21 Inspiring Quotes From Black Leaders From Throughout American History
Originally published on Feb. 21, 2018
From Oprah Winfrey to Maya Angelou to Booker T. Washington, African American leaders and entrepreneurs past and present have made great strides toward creating a better world. These black leaders and entrepreneurs have long battled, and continue to, many obstacles with odds stacked against them.
Throughout a history of oppression, these individuals have shown resilience and achieved success during times of adversity. That's why February, Black History Month, is dedicated to identifying and praising these leaders who have created positive change and impact.
To learn more, here are 21 inspiring quotes from some of the most successful African American entrepreneurs and leaders throughout history and today.
"I can accept failure. Everyone fails at something. But I can't accept not trying."
Madam C.J. Walker
Reginald F. Lewis
Martin Luther King Jr.
"Change will not come if we wait for some other person or if we wait for some time. We are the ones we've been waiting for."
Booker T. Washington
"Life is not a spectator sport. If you're going to spend your whole life in the grandstand just watching what goes on, in my opinion you're wasting your life."Related: 10 of the Most Successful African-American Entrepreneurs
George Washington Carver
"Each of you, as an individual, must pick your own goals. Listen to others, but do not become a blind follower."
Robert F. Smith
Robert F. Smith, billionaire investor and founder of Vista Equity Partners, addressed Morehouse College's graduating class on Sunday and included a shocking announcement -- that his family would start a grant to eliminate their student loans, which could reportedly total upwards of $10 million.
“Let’s make sure every class has the same opportunity going forward, because we are enough to take care of our own community,” Smith said. “We are enough to ensure we have all of the opportunities of the American dream, and we will show it to each other through our actions and through our words and through our deeds.”