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Cherwell Honors Black History Month with an Illustration Series Featuring Illustrator and Software Engineer, Teddy Phillps

Blog Black History Month

This initiative highlights Black leaders who have shaped -- and are continuing to shape -- our world 


Cherwell has always been committed to fostering an environment of equity in innovation and  to bringing forward voices in the tech and innovation conversation. 


As we move into February — Black History Month — we’re revisiting this commitment, exploring the ways we as individuals and as an organization can honor Black innovators, wave makers and leaders who are redefining the way we all do business. These are the doers and dreamers who are pushing us all to rethink the future of work — and this year we’re highlighting one in particular. 


“Morgan DeBaun (@morgandebaun) is a dynamic African American entrepreneur who founded and runs Blavity, Inc. Her powerhouse portfolio of immersive platforms designed for Black millennials, including AfroTech, Shadow and Act, Travel Noire, and 21 Ninety,” says Ida Pennymon, Sr. Director, Global Marketing at Cherwell. “She is an unparalleled force in media, technology, and customer experiences — and what she’s built at Blavity speaks to her creativity, innovation, and deep audience connection.” 


Recognizing leaders who laid the foundation 

At the same time, we’re taking this opportunity to reflect on and honor the leaders who came before us and whose work impacts our day to day right now — like Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., who inspired so many to pursue equality in government and the workplace. Jackie Robinson, who was the first African American to integrate Major League Baseball and showed the world that we have more similarities than differences.   “This is a time to reflect on who we are and what Cherwell stands for as an organization - heart, hunger, humility, honesty. We hold these values dear, practice and honor them always,” says Sam Gilliland, CEO at Cherwell. “Honoring Black History Month gives us the opportunity to celebrate the sacrifices, accomplishments and achievements of African Americans.” 


Commissioning Teddy Phillips to bring innovators to life 

In support of this initiative, we’ve partnered with renowned artist and Microsoft cybersecurity engineer, Teddy Phillips (@stattheartist), who has created a series of illustrations honoring Black leaders and innovators. 


“We chose to partner with Teddy not only because of his artistic skills, but also because of his connection to the technology industry. He is a software engineer at Microsoft, a Cherwell partner, by day, but he also has a true passion for illustration. His artistic style, talent, and mission of amplifying Black stories through art is the reason why we chose him for this initiative,” said Pennymon. 


Unveiling February 1, Cherwell’s campaign will highlight Phillip’s collection, which includes great leaders like mogul, Sean “P.Diddy” Combs, the legendary Kobe Bryant, award-winning actor, Will Smith, renowned storyteller, Ava Duvernay, and political leaders like former President Barack Obama and Vice President Kamala Harris. In addition to Phillip’s existing collection, Cherwell commissioned a piece of Morgan DeBaun as a way of celebrating her achievements in technology. The complete collection will be displayed on Cherwell’s YouTube, LinkedIn, Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook channels and include weekly features of history makers from the collection.

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