The Opelousas Public Library celebrated a local author with a book signing event on Saturday.
Lavaille Lavette, author, educator, and publisher of Ebony Magazines imprint Ebony's Publishing, met with community leaders and was honored during the event.
However, one of Lavette's books was the main focus of Saturday's event. Senator Gerald Boudreaux, Parish Councilman Harold Taylor, City Council Marvin Richard, and more were on hand to participate in a ceremony in which Opelousas Mayor Julius Alsandor declared Saturday, March 20, 2021 as "Ebony: Covering Black America, by Lavaille Lavette Day." The aforementioned book is a compilation of Ebony Magazine's "rich history, glamorous covers, groundbreaking cultural impact, and authentic coverage of Black American life from the magazine's inception to the present," according to the book's description.
Copies of Lavette's book are being donated to the Opelousas and Eunice Public Libraries, Depot Museum, Opelousas Music and Interpretive Center, Rural African American Museum, and to various schools throughout St. Landry Parish.
School board members hope the books will bring history to all students.
"We bought the books in order to donate the books to the schools, so they would place them in the schools, in the lounges and the libraries. So that others will look through the book and others can see history unfold in front of their eyes and read the comments made by different people in the book," said St. Landry Parish School Board Member Joyce Hanes, who represents District 2. "So it provides history, all history, to everyone."
The event was also in celebration of the magazine's 75th anniversary.
Lavette also serves as special adviser to the U.S. Secretary of Education, works with various non-profits with her best-selling series The Adventures of Roopster Roux, and is the co-founder of Every Child an Author, which works to make every child in America a published author, one grade level at a time.
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