Courtesy of Case Western Reserve University
The story of a group of African-American women mathematicians who worked behind the scenes in relative obscurity for what is now NASA, Hidden Figures: The American Dream and the Untold Story of the Black Women Mathematicians Who Helped Win the Space Race
became a New York Times bestseller upon its release earlier this year.
Its author, Margot Lee Shetterly, will be the keynote speaker for Case Western Reserve University’s 2017 Martin Luther King Jr. Convocation, a celebration of King’s legacy with workshops, films, panel discussions and guest speakers.
The event, which is free and open to the public, takes place at 12:30 p.m. on Friday, Feb. 3, in the Kelvin and Eleanor Smith Foundation Ballroom at the Tinkham Veale University Center (11038 Bellflower Road). A book-signing and reception follows the talk.
“The fact that the word ‘hidden’ is there is part of the issue; these are unsung heroes,” says Marilyn Sanders Mobley, vice president of the Office for Inclusion, Diversity and Equal Opportunity, in a press release. “I love the way it expands the national narrative, to say, no, there was a lot of collaboration across racial lines, that there were other people contributing in a major way to such an important national endeavor — and in a STEM field.”
Shetterly, whose father was among the first generation of black NASA engineers and scientists, had direct access to NASA executives and the women featured in the book while growing up near the historically black Hampton College.
To attend the event, register at case.edu/events/mlk/