After a year of so much loss, I am thinking more and more about the short time we have on this earth, and the messages we are sending to the future.

Grounded. Travel this year was mostly limited to moving my office to different rooms in my house as I toggled between teaching, writing and working with artists and activists pushing for change.

This year I said goodbye to Allison Ranelle Brown, a pioneering education civil rights lawyer who has been my best friend since 1988. I posted a quick tribute to her on Facebook, but there will be many more celebrations of her life to come in 2021 from her wide circle of advocates and friends — the “A.B. Hive” as we call them.

Allison loved Black…

Build Banneker in Shaw as a Living Monument to Black Excellence

Benjamin Banneker.

May 10, 2019

From: John Settles Jr., Natalie Hopkinson, and Lee Granados

Parents, Benjamin Banneker Academic High School

To: Members of the Washington, D.C. City Council

Re: Build Banneker — A Monument to Black Excellence

Dear D.C. Council Members,

We respectfully ask that you to vote Tuesday to fund Mayor Muriel Bowser’s plan to build Benjamin Banneker Academic High School at the site of the long-vacant Shaw Middle School.

As DC residents, we share the concerns raised by our neighbors in Shaw about the history of carnage against our…

Natalie Hopkinson

A writer and scholar living in DC.

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