West Orange – Stark High School celebrated Black History Month with the national theme of “Black Women in American Culture and History” at a program Tuesday afternoon.

The event included the presentation of many Outstanding Black Woman awards.

“This award is presented to African American Women in our community who have made a positive impact on our youth and who have achieved success in their respective careers. This award attempts to acknowledge and celebrate the accomplishments of exceptional women in the African American culture and to address the influential role that women of color have in our society and community,” said Hutcherson Hill, WO-S High School Principal.

Community honorees who were recognized at the event include Margaret Adams, Essie Bellfield, Bettie Curtis, Marcia Delarue, Travessa Gant-King, Anitrea Goodwin, Sarah Jefferson – Simon, Rev. Dr. Carolyn McCall, Brenda Anderson – O’Neal, Sandra Phillips, Shelia Teate, and Cynthia Toliver

Travessa Gant-King was the guest speaker.

Gant-King played high school basketball at WO-S High School and college basketball at Lamar University. She went on to play professionally in the WNBA and internationally.

She told the students, “When you are pressing toward a goal there will always be opposition. It is up to you to decide whether you will give up or go on,” she said.

She encouraged students to overcome fears associated with any goal.

“Never give up. Never quit,” she said.

Photo: The West Orange – Stark High School Black History Program held Feb. 28, honored many distinguished women from the community. They are (front row) Bettie Curtis, Margaret Adams, Essie Bellfield, Rev. Dr. Carolyn McCall, Cynthia Toliver, Travessa Gant-King; (back row) Brenda Anderson O’Neal, Sandra Phillips, Sarah Jefferson – Simon, Shelia Teate, and Anitrea Goodwin. Not pictured is Marcia Delarue.