In the Community
September 6, 2011
‘Remember Them’ Monument Unveiled in Oakland, Calif.
Kaiser Permanente’s Grant Helped Create a Sculpture to Honor 25 Humanitarians Who Changed History
“Remember Them: Champions for Humanity,” a world-class monument featuring 25 humanitarians, was revealed Tuesday, Sept. 6 at Henry J. Kaiser Memorial Park in Oakland, Calif.
Kaiser Permanente committed in 2010 to invest $7.5 million to support the Oakland Unified School District with school-based health clinics and the district’s African American Male Achievement project. At that same press conference, Kaiser Permanente announced that it would provide more than $1 million to help support “Remember Them,” a social justice monument and park with accompanying educational curricula that will teach schoolchildren about 25 international humanitarians from American history who made a difference through courage, perseverance, education, sacrifice and a desire to make life better for all.
Today’s ceremony will feature Maya Angelou and Ruby Bridges, and will be attended by Donzaleigh Abernathy, Julianna Roosevelt, and Attallah Shabazz. The celebration will also include actor Peter Coyote, Michael Morgan and the Oakland East Bay Symphony, and Congresswoman Barbara Lee (D-Calif.). Kaiser Permanente will be represented by George Halvorson, chairman and chief executive officer, and Bernard Tyson, president and chief operating officer.
“Remember Them” will be placed in Henry J. Kaiser Memorial Park, in the newly renovated Uptown neighborhood in downtown Oakland. The four-piece sculpture will stand 52 feet wide by 25 feet tall, cover 1,000 square feet and use more than 40,000 pounds of bronze. A special feature for the visually impaired will allow visitors to explore life-sized bronze busts of each humanitarian, and will include information in Braille. In the first phase of installation, three of the five sections were unveiled on Sept. 6.
The monument honors the following 25 humanitarians: The Rev. Ralph David Abernathy, Maya Angelou, Susan B. Anthony, Ruby Bridges, Cesar Chavez, Chief Joseph, Sir Winston Churchill, Frederick Douglass, Shirin Ebadi, Mahatma Gandhi, Helen Keller, Coretta Scott King, The Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., Abraham Lincoln, Nelson Mandela, Harvey Milk, Mother Teresa, Rosa Parks, Franklin Delano Roosevelt, Oskar Schindler, Thich Nhat Hanh, Rigoberta Menchu Tum, The Unknown Rebel of Tiananmen Square, Elie Wiesel, and Malcolm X.
Oakland native and master artist Mario Chiodo developed the project following the fateful events of 9/11 as an expression of how difficult times can call forth humanity’s best efforts. The “Remember Them” monument, is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit project of the Oakland Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce Foundation.
Additional “Remember Them” installation events include:
- Sept. 10: 6–9 p.m. — A sold-out fund-raising gala to support the completion of the “Remember Them” monument.
- Sept. 11: 5–7:30 a.m. — A free public Silent Vigil marking the 10th anniversary of 9/11.
Visit “Remember Them: Champions for Humanity” at www.remember-them.org for information and images.