'The View' celebrates Black History Month 2022

The Emmy-winning daytime talk show highlights Black trailblazers.

ByThe View
February 24, 2022, 11:00 AM

Every February, Americans recognize the accomplishments of Black heroes for Black History Month and "The View" is joining in that celebration again in 2022.

The Emmy-winning daytime talk show recognizes heroes, role models and trailblazers who've made history in the U.S.

Thursday, Feb 24: Paul Revere Williams

“The View” salutes “architect to the stars” Paul R. Williams, the visionary who helped create the skyline of Los Angeles, and also had Hollywood A-list clients like Frank Sinatra!

As the first licensed Black architect west of the Mississippi, Williams’ race meant he wasn’t even welcome in some of the 3,000 buildings and homes he designed, and he learned to draw upside down because he was forced to sit across from his clients, not next to them. From Saks Fifth Avenue to Terminal 1 at LAX, his signature style helped define LA architecture; especially the legendary Beverly Hills Hotel with the sign in his handwriting.

During an era of unchecked racism, this genius was still able to change the landscape of America!

Tuesday, Feb. 22: Josephine Baker

“The View” honors Josephine Baker, one of the 20th century's biggest superstars and a real-life action hero.

At 19-years-old, she fled Jim Crow America to Paris, where her dancing, singing, and acting made her a jazz age icon and Europe's highest-paid entertainer. During World War II, Baker added air force pilot and spy to her resume, becoming the first American woman to receive the French war cross.

Although she lived in France, she devoted the rest of her life to the Civil Rights movement and spoke at the 1963 march on Washington. Baker made history again 46 years after her death with one of France's greatest honors: Becoming the first Black woman, first performing artist, and first American inducted into France's iconic monument, the Pantheon.

Friday, Feb. 18: Ashley Bryan

“The View” honors author, illustrator, teacher, and artist Ashley Bryan. He introduced generations of young people to diversity through Black characters in children’s books that celebrate Black history and culture.

In a career spanning more than five decades, this prolific artist also used a variety of mediums like puppets, paintings, poetry, collages and sketches to compose vivid portraits of the African and African-American experience. He was 81 when he published one of his most famous books, “Beautiful Blackbird.”

Bryan passed away just weeks ago at the age of 98, but his vast body of work will continue to enlighten children from all walks of life.

Tuesday, Feb. 15: Vonetta Flowers

As “The View” congratulates Erin Jackson, who just became the first Black speedskater to win a gold medal at the 2022 Winter Olympics, they honor an athlete who paved the way for her two decades ago.

Vonetta Flowers was the first Black male or female athlete from any country to win the gold, as brakewoman for the U.S. bobsled team at the 2002 Winter Olympics. Flowers was a sprinter and long jumper in college, until injuries and two failing bids to qualify in the Olympics made her hang up her spikes. Soon afterwards, she hopped on a bobsled when her husband saw a flyer urging track and field athletes to transition to the sport.

She was already 26 at this point, but made up for lost time and made history with teammate Jill Bakken when they won the gold medal at the 2002 Winter Olympics in Salt Lake City.

Thursday, Feb. 10: Gen. Daniel James, Jr.

“The View” spotlights trailblazing hero Daniel “Chappie" James Jr., who broke through racial barriers to make history as the first Black four star general.

General James was an air force general and a fighter pilot who began his career with the legendary Tuskegee airmen and was on the frontlines in ending segregation in the United States military. He flew 179 combat missions in the Korean and Vietnam wars and received numerous military and civilian honors, including the distinguished service medal.

James rose through the ranks and in 1975, became the first Black four-star general and commander of the North American air defense command.

Tuesday. Feb. 8: Jessica Watkins

"The View" honors NASA astronaut Jessica Watkins, who's inspiring the next generation to expand their horizons.

Watkins is getting ready to blast off on the next SpaceX flight in April. which will make her the first Black woman on a long-term mission aboard the international space station. For six months, she will live and work there as it orbits Earth, conducting research in the microgravity laboratory.

Thursday, Feb. 3: Captain Bill Pinkney

“The View” salutes Captain Bill Pinkney, who’s the first Black man and the fourth person in history to make a solo boat voyage around the world.

In 1990, 50-year-old Pinkney set sail from Boston harbor on a ship named “The Commitment" and for the next 22 months, he battled bad weather, covered 27,000 miles, and shot his own footage that would become the documentary “The Incredible Voyage of Bill Pinkney!" In 1992, he dropped anchor back in the harbor to a cheering crowd of officers from the navy, coast guard, national park service, as well as over a thousand students who followed every nautical mile of his journey.

Tuesday, Feb. 1: Viola Desmond

Viola Desmond was a successful entrepreneur in Canada, who stood her ground against racial segregation by refusing to leave a whites-only area of a theater. She was dragged out by police, arrested and imprisoned, but fought her conviction in court.

Desmond didn't win but her case helped inspire Canada's civil rights movement. She would later be granted Canada's first posthumous pardon, have her own postage stamp and become the first Black person with a solo portrait on Canadian currency.

”The View”’s original podcast series "Behind the Table" is available for free on major listening platforms, including Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Amazon Music, Google Podcasts, iHeartRadio, Stitcher, TuneIn, Audacy and the ABC News app.