Professor Chaunda L. Scott talks award-winning new book

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Photo Courtesy of Amazon

The book Chaunda L. Scott co-edited, “Minnesota’s Black Community in the 21st Century. The book has received the 2020 R. Wayne Pace Human Resource Development Book of the Year Award from the Academy of Human Resource Development. 

Bridget Janis, Staff Reporter

With her new book, Oakland University Associate Professor of Human Resource Development Chaunda L. Scott has added being a co-editor of an award-winning book to her accomplishments.

Scott was a part of creating “Minnesota’s Black Community in the 21st Century” which was published in 2020. The book has received the 2020 R. Wayne Pace Human Resource Development Book of the Year Award from the Academy of Human Resource Development. 

The Academy of Human Resource Development is a professional global organization that focuses on advancing the human resource field and career development. The book was nominated by the Minnesota Historical Society Press.

The book was constructed to be focused on both pictures and biographies of prominent African American professionals, rather than just historical text. Scott is originally from Minnesota. Her father, Walter R. Scott, Sr. wrote books similar to this one back in the ‘50s,‘60s and ‘70s.

“We wanted to highlight black professions, what African Americans are doing in the state of Minnesota,” Scott said. “It’s really a pictorial book, if you will.”

The goal of her father’s books were to focus on what African Americans were doing for the pre and post civil rights movements. Scott’s book builds off her father’s work and seems to be an extension of his legacy.

“I really see this award being more for my dad, who laid the foundation for our book,” Scott said. 

Previously to “Minnesota’s Black Community in the 21st Century” coming out, the Minnesota Historical Society Press published the “Scott Collection,” which was all three volumes of Walter R. Scott, Sr.’s book in 2018. This allowed his historical books to come back into circulation.

“Some family friends of ours – the Crutchfield family and the Scott family – 40 years later decided we needed to put similar books back into circulation in Minnesota,” Scott said. “Given the temperature of how race has become a more central element of society.”

These families formed a Minnesota’s Black Community Project (MBCP). This is to create programs, books, documentaries and build a historical record for Minnesota that is more inclusive. 

Seven people have given this group their all; Anthony R. Scott; Dr. Charles E. Crutchfield, III; Dr. Chaunda L. Scott; Christopher Crutchfield; George J. Scott; Dr. Charles E. Crutchfield, II; and Beverly Lampkins since 2015.

“We offer programs that spotlight African American success, we highlight artists and educators,” Scott said. “We also touch on hot topics; policing in Minnesota, racism in Minnesota and so forth.”

This book contains many different generations of people and the stories of success within them. It brings another side and a new, more perspective to life in Minnesota that heightens the history of black successes instead of their sorrows.

“The only time you see anything about African Americans, is when somebody has their knee on your neck,” Scott said. “Or else it’s never positive.”

Scott is the secretary of MBCP and was also the project administrator which held all the scheduling for photos and interviews that are in the book. The project also received two grants to make this happen.

“It was very gratifying to be acknowledged,” Scott said. “Especially given this was our first book as a non-profit organization.”