Lori Banks named on list of 1000 inspiring black scientists

Dr. Lori Banks

Assistant Professor of Biology Lori Banks has been cited as an inspiring black scientist by Cell Mentor, a web resource that provides support  and resources for emerging scientists in their career pathway. Congratulations!!

From the list commentary:

“Maya Angelou once said, “We delight in the beauty of the butterfly, but rarely admit the changes it has gone through to achieve that beauty.” This can be said for Black culture in its entirety. 

Black culture is the archetype for innovation, distinction, creativity, intelligence, spirituality, and healing. Black culture is distinct, and it has a heavy influence on American and global cultures. Likewise, Black talent is both ubiquitous and abundant, but the excellence of Black people is often obscured. To remove the bleach from the history books, the Community of Scholars formed this list of inspiring Black scientists. We are also here to dismantle the myth that outstanding Black scientists make up a small percentage of the scientific community.  

We are here to compel and imbue the next generation of Black scientists and other minoritized individuals to enhance and empower our culture’s dignity. We also emphasize the need for continued appropriation of resources and the removal of obstacles and racial barriers to continue to amplify Black culture and talentWe hope that this post generates the zeal necessary to help people become well-rounded persons excluded because of their ethnicity or race (PEERs) that is not thought of as a statistic that must achieve token status or an individual that is already phenotyped and genotyped before testing the hypothesis. 

Navigating a scientific career is often regarded as the pinnacle of independence. However, as science becomes more of a collaborative disciplinewe as Black people must free our minds of the crab mentality, the metrics of comparison amongst each other, and the bondage of tokenism. Political activist Marcus Garvey once said, “We are going to emancipate ourselves from mental slavery because whilst others might free the body, none but ourselves can free the mind. As a people, we must honor the immense battle it took to acquire a doctorate from a country that was not appreciative of Black talent. We challenge the leaders in science to rectify the leaky pipeline that hinders PEERS to create and innovate at their fullest potential. We challenge others to carry individuals with the opportunity of chance and not the opportunity of prejudgment. No longer should we wait and sit back for others to acknowledge our accomplishments. Now is the time to acknowledge each other, our talents, our accomplishments, and reclaim the knowledge that could have been lost.”