Malcolm X’s Daughter Speaks on Legacy at UK

LEXINGTON, Ky. (Nov. 8, 2010) — Ambassador Attallah Shabazz, the eldest daughter of human rights activist Malcolm X, might have a better handle on family than most, while her international experience and support of diversity has the ability to bridge cultures throughout the University of Kentucky and the Lexington community.
Shabazz will present a lecture titled “Heritage: Embracing Your Legacy ‘Everybody Has One'” at 7 p.m., Wednesday, Nov. 10 in the Center Theater of the UK Student Center.
The lecture is co-sponsored by the Martin Luther King, Jr. Cultural Center, the Office of Community Engagement, the College of Social Work, African American Studies and Research Program and the Office of Institutional Diversity. Admission is free and the public is invited.
Raised in Westchester County, New York, Shabazz is the eldest of six daughters born to Betty and Malcolm X Shabazz. She graduated from the United Nations International School at 17 and entered Briarcliff College the following fall semester, majoring in international law with a minor in English.
A producer, writer and diplomat, she has spent over 35 years offering keynote addresses, while also developing curriculums and programs for educational institutions, executive forums, diplomatic networks, penal systems, conferences and human service organizations globally.
“What an awesome opportunity it is to have the daughter of Malcolm X speak to us,” said Sonja Feist Price, director of UK’s African American Studies and Research Program. “Ambassador Shabazz is an international diplomat who appeals to persons of every social strata regarding the value of diversity and multicultural relations.  I am delighted that African American Studies can be a part of this momentous occasion.”
Shabazz’s programs motivate and encourage the young and mature alike to recognize the value in and to further appreciate diverse cultural engagement and traditional rites of passage and perspectives, thus promoting a genuine respect for oneself and others.
“The College of Social Work is pleased to partner with others at UK to support Ambassador Shabazz’s visit,” said James “Ike” Adams, Dean of the College of Social Work. “Her expertise in diplomatic relations between cultures is a timely topic and should foster thoughtful, substantive deliberations from all attendees.”
In 1996, Shabazz established the Pilgrimage Foundation in honor of her father’s spiritual journey to the Holy Land. “It offered him the ‘Light of Understanding’ and confirmed his vision for our Oneness” she said. “We step into the world — both mindful and equipped to fulfill our bounty – and then share it with others.”
The Pilgrimage Foundation has touched hundreds of thousands of lives around the world reaching the under-served and well as the privileged. From shelters, correctional facilities, villages, metropolises, State Houses and Royal compounds. “We are fundamentally the same—balancing our highs and lows all day long,” said Shabazz.
After years of personal service, the former prime minister of Belize recognized Shabazz as a key advisor on international cultural affairs and project development. In 2002, he appointed her ambassador-at-large, representing the country internationally. The Ministries of Human Development, Culture, Education and Youth and Sports also incorporated her insights and guidance to their cabinet as well.
Since then, Shabazz has been invited to participate in the U.S. State Department’s diplomatic briefing forums. Much of her expertise lies in fostering diplomatic relations between cultures along with discerning traditional and contemporary practices, capacity building and human resource training.
Shabazz is also the founder of Tapestry Bridge, Legacy Inc. and the Malcolm X Shabazz Birthplace and Foundation. In the past, she has offered her dedicated participation as a member of the Switzerland-based World Economic Forum’s Task Force on the Digital Divide and serves on a number of international humanitarian councils and committees. Shabazz is a proud member of the United Nations International School Alumnae, where she has counseled the senior class since 1991.
The internationally renowned diplomat has written op-ed commentaries and articles for newspapers and periodicals such as the New York Times, Essence Magazine, El Mundo and others. In 1999, she had the honor of adding to the list of her published writings, the new foreword to “The Autobiography of Malcolm X” and is completing her memoirs, titled “From Mine Eyes.”
For more information on this program, please contact the Martin Luther King, Jr. Cultural Center at UK a (859) 257-4130.

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