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Image of Malcolm X statue created by Nathan Murray. (Photo credit: Aaron Bonderson)

Malcolm X Inducted into Nebraska Hall of Fame

  • Post category:News

Image of Malcolm X statue created by Nathan Murray. (Photo credit: Aaron Bonderson)

In a historic ceremony last month, civil rights leader Malcolm X, who was born in Omaha, Nebraska in 1925, has been inducted into the Nebraska Hall of Fame. This milestone makes him the first Black individual to receive this honor, joining 26 other distinguished members whose busts are displayed in the Nebraska State Capitol.

Over 150 attendees packed the Warner Chamber, located just off the Capitol Rotunda, to witness the unveiling of Malcolm X’s bust. Created by Lincoln artist Nathan Murray, the statue captures Malcolm X in a contemplative pose, symbolizing a welcoming of dialogue and reflection.

Among those present was Ilyasah Shabazz, Malcolm X’s daughter and an acclaimed author, who spoke on the significance of her father’s induction. “Much like my father did, it calls on each of us to reflect on how we can personally make an impact in the world,” Shabazz remarked. “Let Malcolm’s dedication to truth and justice inspire us all, ensuring that future generations understand the full story of my father’s life and transformation as it relates to their own journeys.”

Malcolm X, also known as El-Hajj Malik El-Shabazz, was a pivotal figure in raising international awareness about the struggles of Black people and advocating for their self-sufficiency and defense. His advocacy work and pilgrimage to 11 African countries profoundly influenced his perspective and efforts. During his pilgrimage to Africa he also visited Ghana at a time when the likes of Maya Angelou also came to Ghana.

The ceremony also featured former State Senator Ernie Chambers, who shared his reflections on this momentous occasion. “I never thought I’d live long enough to see a white conservative Republican governor, in a white ultra-conservative state like Nebraska, participate in the induction of Malcolm X into the Nebraska Hall of Fame,” Chambers said. Chambers had the opportunity to meet Malcolm X during his return to Omaha in 1964, adding a personal connection to his remarks.

JoAnna LeFlore Ejike, executive director of the Malcolm X Memorial Foundation in Omaha, highlighted the educational and historical significance of Malcolm X’s induction. “The induction of Malcolm X into the Hall of Fame can be a tool for educators, historians, and emerging leaders to explain the importance of collaboration and follow through for something of this magnitude to take place,” LeFlore Ejike stated. “It also helps tell the full story of Malcolm’s transformation.”

Malcolm X’s wife, Dr. Betty Shabazz, and their six daughters have continued his legacy of resilience and human rights advocacy. At the ceremony, Governor Jim Pillen proclaimed May 19 as El-Hajj Malik El-Shabazz Day, also known as Malcolm X Day, in Nebraska, further cementing Malcolm X’s enduring influence on the state and its people.

This historic induction not only honors Malcolm X’s contributions but also serves as a powerful reminder of the ongoing struggle for justice and equality.

Watch the full induction ceremony below.

Ivy Prosper

Digital Creator, Writer, Producer, Speaker