Andrea Y. Henderson | KBIA

Andrea Y. Henderson

Andrea Henderson joined St. Louis Public Radio in March 2019, where she covers race, identity and culture as part of the public radio collaborative Sharing America. Andrea comes to St. Louis Public Radio from NPR, where she reported for the race and culture podcast Code Switch and produced pieces for All Things Considered. Andrea’s passion for storytelling began at a weekly newspaper in her hometown of Houston, Texas, where she covered a wide variety of stories including hurricanes, transportation and Barack Obama’s 2009 Presidential Inauguration. Her art appreciation allowed her to cover arts and culture for the Houston African-American business publication, Empower Magazine. She also covered the arts for Syracuse’s Post-Standard and The Post and Courier in Charleston, South Carolina.

Andrea graduated from the University of Texas at Arlington with a bachelor’s degree in journalism and earned her master’s degree in arts journalism from Syracuse University. For three years, she served on the board of the Houston Alliance of Fashion and Beauty as the media chair, and she is a member of the National Association of Black Journalists. When the proud Houstonian is not chasing a story, she enjoys catching up on her shows, getting lost in museums and swimming in tropical waters.

Follow her journey through St. Louis via Twitter and Instagram at @drebjournalist.

After the 2016 presidential election, David Blankenhorn, president of the national organization Better Angels, wanted to bring voters together to try to find common ground despite their political differences.

Blankenhorn gathered 10 Democratic Party voters and 10 Republican Party voters in South Lebanon, Ohio, to discuss the election and explore how to rebuild a civil society. This groundwork led Blankenhorn to founding his organization.

The group has hosted over 400 community events in the past three years, and will host a three-day convention beginning Thursday at Washington University to tear down political stereotyping and conversation barriers among voters.

When Harris-Stowe State University President Dwaun Warmack graduated from high school, he had a 1.7 grade-point average and did not think he was college material. Today, Warmack, 42, is one of the youngest presidents of a four-year college in the country.

His journey with Harris-Stowe began in 2014, but come July 31, he will leave the historically black university for Claflin University in South Carolina.

Updated 10:30 a.m., June 10, with comment from the Missouri Sheriffs' Association – In response to the Missouri Attorney General’s Vehicle Stops Report released on Friday, local groups and politicians are calling for accountability from Missouri law enforcement officers.

Leaders reacted to the release of the annual report on Monday morning at Second Presbyterian Church in St. Louis, just three days after the report cited that black motorists of the driving-age population are stopped and searched at far higher rates than any other race.

A local reproductive rights activist says the loss of Missouri's last clinic that provides abortions would be dire for black women.

Pamela Merritt, co-founder of Reproaction and the emcee of the pro-Planned Parenthood rally held on Thursday in downtown St. Louis, said black women will be disportionately impacted if the reproductive health services clinic loses its license to perform abortions.

The Missouri Attorney General's 2018 report on traffic stops shows black drivers were even more likely to be stopped than white drivers compared to the year prior. Statewide in 2018, blacks were 91% more likely than whites to be stopped by law enforcement. That's based on the driving-age population of both groups in the 2010 census. For 2017, the figure was 85%.

In relation to the entire population of Missouri, blacks were stopped at a rate of 76% in 2018 compared to 72% in 2017.

A few years ago, former NFL player-turned-filmmaker, Matthew A. Cherry noticed a plethora of viral videos of young African American fathers styling their daughters' natural hair and bonding with them in gender nonconforming ways.

The videos were far more popular than similar social videos about black fathers connecting with their sons. And that struck Cherry as intersting. Cherry said thousands of users engaged with the videos because people “think this is an anomaly and they have never seen this before.”

“I saw this as a double-edged sword and wanted to normalize it,” Cherry said.

For over a century, the Annie Malone Children and Family Services agency has brought thousands of community members together in the country’s second-largest African American parade: the Annie Malone May Day Parade.

Last Sunday’s procession marked its 109th celebration in downtown St. Louis. Parade viewers saw marching bands, local business owners on floats and peppy cheerleaders throughout Market Street near Union Station.

For the agency, the bash is a yearly celebration to let the public know they are still in the city and willing to serve the needs of a growing community. In recent years, the nonprofit has experienced a drastic change in the type of care families in the area need, said Patricia Washington, the agency’s vice president of development and external affairs.

Before the death of Michael Brown Jr., entrepreneur Ohun Ashe said she did not see many black-owned businesses in her community.

In 2014, Ashe was in the streets of Ferguson and St. Louis protesting the killing of Brown. She recorded video footage of scenes between police and protestors and even the moment when she was arrested and thrown into a paddy wagon. Once demonstrations died down, Ashe was determined to understand her role in the protests.

It was not until 2016 when Ashe envisioned providing the St. Louis community with an online black business directory, ForTheCultureSTL.com.

High-steppers, marching bands and elaborate floats are always crowd pleasers at the Annie Malone Children and Family Services Annie Malone May Day Parade.

But Sunday’s parade is not just entertainment; it is the agency’s largest fundraiser.

Though the parade route moved in 2005 from the historic Ville neighborhood to downtown St. Louis, Sara Lahman, CEO at Annie Malone, said the parade is what is keeping the agency alive.

Women make up just a fraction of professional basketball referees, coaches and owners. A St. Louis woman is doing her best to change that. Khalia Collier is owner and general manager of the St. Louis Surge, the region’s only professional women’s sports team.

In her eighth season at the helm of the team, Collier is also the newest commissioner of the Global Women’s Basketball Association, a league of five teams that creates a space for players to have careers beyond collegiate, amateur and professional play.

The St. Louis County NAACP is throwing its support behind the group’s suspended president even as the national association presses on with an investigation into the leader’s behavior.

“It is my hope that after John has his opportunity to prove the type of work he was doing, which was really good work, he can get made whole again and made president again,” interim president John Bowman said.

The St. Louis region's business community will have the chance to learn how increasing ties with Asia can help boost local commerce.

Four Asian commerce counselors will discuss potential business opportunities in St. Louis at the first Asian American Chamber of Commerce Asian Business Summit on Tuesday at St. Louis University.

Al Li, the chamber’s president, said the group is here to help develop St. Louis into a global business market with an Asian outlook. And with the summit, Asian business owners can network and create opportunities for St. Louis to bring in more international business markets.

Junior Lara distinctly remembers the day he was approved for his U.S. green card. It was 1993, and he was nine years old. It was the first time he had ever signed his name.

A year later, Lara, his mother and three brothers moved from the Dominican Republic to New York City to reunite with his father who had been working for years to bring his family to the U.S.

As the 2019-2020 St. Louis Board of Aldermen session commenced on Tuesday, members strolled in with smiles on their faces as they greeted guests and fellow aldermen with hugs and gifts for the newest members.

Family members and guests on the floor and in the chamber gallery cheered as three newly elected and 12 re-elected members, including Board of Aldermen President Lewis Reed, were sworn into office. The newest members are Alderwoman Shameem Hubbard, D-26th Ward, Alderman Jesse Todd, D-18th Ward and Alderman Bret Narayan, D-24th Ward. 

The Women’s Group on Race Relations will convene St. Louis faith leaders to discuss how faith can combat racism on Tuesday at 6 p.m. at the Congregation Temple Israel in Creve Coeur.

“There is a saying that Sunday is the most segregated day in St. Louis,” said Evelyn Rice-Peebles, an organizer. “It tends to be very little cross-pollination on Sundays and if we profess to be people of faith, how can we be so unkind based on race.”

Growing up in Pittsburgh, co-founder of the cultural commentary website VerySmartBrothas and the author of the memoir “What Doesn’t Kill You Makes You Blacker,” Damon Young is bringing his “living while black” experiences to the Kranzberg Arts Center on Friday.

Young, 40, harbored the idea of writing a book for while. His agent suggested he take his punchy racial, cultural and political explainers and compile them in a more profound but still engaging way.