Legendary Artist Synthia Saint James Dishes About Her Career and USPS 50th Anniversary Kwanzaa Stamp

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Screenshot via Facebook. Original Photo by Leroy Hamilton

In 1966, pan-African scholar and activist Maulana Ndabezitha Karenga created Kwanzaa as a way to reconnect African-Americans with their West African roots.

The term “Kwanzaa” derives from the Swahili phrase “matunda ya kwanzaa” which translates to “first fruits of the harvest.” From Dec. 26 to Jan. 1, families adhere to seven core principles such as Umoja (unity), Kujichagulia (self-determination), Ujima (collective work and responsibility) and more. They typically create art and music, celebrate Black history, and wear traditional West African clothes like Kente cloth during the week-long holiday.

In honor of the 50th anniversary of Kwanzaa, the United States Postal service released a new stamp on Oct. 1.

“I was commissioned by the Postal Service to paint the first Kwanzaa stamp in 1996, which was released as a 32-cents stamp on Oct. 22, 1997,” painter Dr. Synthia Saint James told Atlanta Black Star in an exclusive sit-down. “Nearly 19 years later in 2015, I was commissioned again by the USPS. This time to create/paint a Kwanzaa Forever Stamp.”

Read more here.

5 Reasons Atlanta Is the New Hotbed for the Entertainment Industry

Originally Posted on Blerds.

Written By Ricky Riley

There is a reason Atlanta is called the Empire City of the South. Like New York City, Atlanta has become a cultural center for the arts and entertainment industry. Many celebrities make the city their home, such as rapper and actor T.I., director Tyler Perry, singer and actress Brandy and many others. The city has also been a mecca for the Southern rap and hip-hop scene. For these reasons, the city has attracted the movie and television industry. This list will give reasons why the industry continues to come back.

800px-Downtown_atlanta_nightAtlanta Is a Hub for Tech and Business Innovators 

According to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, “Booming professions include sound engineering technicians, camera operators and producers. Audio and video equipment technicians are expected to lead the pack, with a projected 22 percent growth in jobs over the next seven years.” It’s more than that though. Atlanta is home to many Fortune 500 companies that have pumped billions of dollars into the state. Georgia has a consumer market valued at more than $73 billion. The top five companies that have made their headquarters in Atlanta are Home Depot, Coca-Cola, Delta Airlines, United Parcel Services and The Southern Company.

Black Voice Actors

Regina King

King has had many iconic acting roles in shows like Southland (2009-13) and 227 (1985-90) and in 1990s films like Poetic Justice, Boyz n the Hood, Friday and Jerry Maguire. However, she has also voiced the iconic Huey and Riley Freeman from The Boondocks (2005-14).