Celebrating Black History Month 2023

By Ashley Barnes


About Black History Month.

Black History Month celebrates and honors Black communities’ contributions to American culture. February is National Black History Month. This year’s theme, “Black Resistance,” focuses on “Black Americans’ efforts to advocate for dignified, self-determined lives within our democratic society, while bringing attention to their achievements” (Postell, 2023). However, we also want to emphasize the importance of celebrating and honoring Black communities daily, not just during the month of February. 

Celebrating Black Mental Health Professionals.

The following individuals are merely some Black mental health professionals who’ve made profoundly positive impacts on the mental health field:

  • Bebe Moore Campbellan American author, journalist, teacher, and mental health advocate who “worked tirelessly to shed light on the mental health needs of the Black community and other underrepresented communities. She founded NAMI-Inglewood in a predominantly Black neighborhood to create a space that was safe for Black people to talk about mental health concerns.”
  • E. Kitch Childs, PhDhelped found the Association for Women in Psychology in 1969, was a founding member of Chicago’s Gay Liberation Front, owned a private practice where she provided therapy to LGBTQ+ folks, people living with HIV/AIDS, and other marginalized members of her community. Childs practiced feminist therapy, centering her research and work around the experiences of Black women and feminist theory. 
  • Kenneth Bancroft Clark, Ph.D. – a Black psychologist, educator, and activist who was the first Black president of the American Psychological Association. He and his wife created the famous “Doll Study” in which more than 200 Black children participated, providing invaluable evidence in favor of ending school segregation in the supreme court case Brown v. Board of Education, citing that school segregation was psychologically harmful to black children.
  • Mamie Phipps Clark, Ph.D. – was the first African American woman to earn a doctorate degree in psychology from Columbia University. She worked together with her husband, Kenneth Clark, on the “Doll Study.” Her passion for adequate mental health services for all prompted her to open her own agency to provide comprehensive psychological services to the poor, the Black community, and other minorities. 
  • James P. Comer, M.D., M.H.P. – is the Maurice Falk Professor of Child Psychiatry at the Yale University School of Medicine’s Child Study Center in New Haven, Connecticut. “He is known nationally and internationally for his creation of the Comer School Development Program in 1968 within Yale University’s School of Medicine.” He has focused his work on improving school restructuring and is a co-founder and past president of the Black Psychiatrists of America. Comer has received countless recognitions, holding over forty eight honorary degrees. “In 2014, Dr. Comer received a prestigious nomination by President Barack Obama to serve on the President’s Commission on Educational Excellence for African Americans.”
  • Jennifer Eberhardt, Ph.D. – “an esteemed professor of psychology at Stanford University. She is an expert on the consequences of the psychological association between race and crime and has done extensive research on the topics of implicit bias, criminal justice, and the education system, and her work has provided the evidence needed to educate law enforcement officers in implicit bias training.” In 2014, she was granted the renowned MacArthur “Genius Grant” Fellowship” for her work.

Supporting Black communities.

A great way to celebrate Black History Month is by supporting Black-owned businesses. Being a diverse city, Los Angeles county has a multitude of Black-owned businesses. Book stores, coffee shops, cultural institutions, fashion and lifestyle businesses, health and wellness businesses, and restaurants are some examples of Black-owned businesses we can support. No act is too small and can assist in closing the racial wealth gap, strengthening local economies. 

Another great way to support Black communities is educating ourselves, especially if we have white privilege. We urge you to continue celebrating and honoring the Black community by supporting Black-owned businesses; further your education on Black culture, achievements, and how to be antiracist. 

Seeking care.

Receiving care from mental health professionals who are knowledgeable about BIPOC concerns and who are culturally competent makes for a positive, inclusive treatment experience. 

Often, patients seek care from psychiatrists or therapists who share similar aspects of their identity with them such as race and ethnicity. Mental health professionals often share their specializations, experience, and important aspects of their identity on company websites, social media, and on platforms such as Psychology Today. At the Mental Health Center, we cherish our diverse staff and physicians. 

If you are seeking help, please contact us to see one of our culturally sensitive psychiatrists today.


  • Black History Montha collaborative project of the Library of Congress and the National Endowment for the Humanities, National Gallery of Art, National Park Service, Smithsonian Institution, United States Holocaust Memorial Museum and U.S. National Archives and Records Administration that provides educational resources celebrating Black Americans.
  • National Geographic Kids – explains to young readers the importance of Black History Month.
  • Ted Talk: The Danger of a Single Story – a Ted Talk by novelist Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie that “tells the story of how she found her authentic cultural voice — and warns that if we hear only a single story about another person or country, we risk a critical misunderstanding.”
  • Ted Talk: The Difference Between Being “Not Racist” and Antiracist – a Ted Talk by author and historian Ibram X. Kendi. In this vital conversation, Kendi “defines the transformative concept of antiracism to help us more clearly recognize, take responsibility for and reject prejudices in our public policies, workplaces and personal beliefs.”



Postell, C. (2023). Black History Month and Social Security. Social Security Matters. Retrieved February 10, 2023, from https://blog.ssa.gov/black-history-month-and-social-security/