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Press Release

January 18, 2022

Contact: Larry O’Dell
Oklahoma Historical Society

Oklahoma Historical Society to Host “A Very OK Podcast” Live Recording Focused on All-Black Towns

OKLAHOMA CITY — Join the Oklahoma Historical Society (OHS) on Thursday, February 10, at 6 p.m. at the Oklahoma History Center in Oklahoma City for a live podcast event. OHS Executive Director Trait Thompson and Dr. Bob Blackburn of the OHS’s “A Very OK Podcast” will interview Henrietta Hicks of Boley, Shirley Nero of Clearview, and Oklahoma Sen. Kevin Matthews of Tulsa about Oklahoma’s historic All-Black towns. This free event will be recorded in front of a live audience.

Beginning at 6 p.m. guests can enjoy complimentary beer and wine, and the panelists will be available for discussion. The live recording of “A Very OK Podcast” will start at 6:30 p.m. Registration is required, and attendees must be 21 years old or older. Please visit www.okhistory.org/livepodcast to register.

Henrietta Hicks was born and attended school in Boley. She graduated from Langston University, and now serves as Boley’s municipal judge. For her contributions to the preservation of the heritage of that All-Black town, Boley has bestowed upon her the distinction of its official historian.

Shirley Nero is a retired secondary social studies teacher who was born and raised in the All-Black town of Clearview. During her career, she was named Sapulpa Junior High Teacher of the Year, Oklahoma Social Studies Teacher of the Year, Oklahoma Heritage Teacher of the Year for Indian Territory and Oklahoma Social Studies Teacher of the Year. Nero served on the OHS Board of Directors and still chairs the OHS Black Heritage Committee. She has led numerous tours of Oklahoma’s All-Black towns. 

Kevin Matthews represents Tulsa in the Oklahoma Senate. In 2012 he was elected to the state House of Representatives, and the next year to the Senate. He is the current chair of both the Black Caucus and the Democratic Caucus. He is the founder and chair of the 1921 Tulsa Race Massacre Centennial Commission, which worked to educate Oklahomans and Americans about “Black Wall Street” and the massacre of 1921, as well as its impact on the state and nation. For the last two years he has been working to attract African American cultural tourism to the All-Black towns.

The mission of the Oklahoma Historical Society is to collect, preserve and share the history and culture of the state of Oklahoma and its people. Founded in 1893 by members of the Territorial Press Association, the OHS maintains museums, historic sites and affiliates across the state. Through its research archives, exhibits, educational programs and publications the OHS chronicles the rich history of Oklahoma. For more information about the OHS, please visit www.okhistory.org.


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