AUP graduation ceremony at the Théâtre du Châtelet in Paris.

Black History Month

Black History Month - Diversity Club's Panel Discussion "Black and in Paris, Exploring the Diaspora"

University Room: David T. McGovern Grand Salon (C-104)
6, rue du Colonel Combes, 75007 Paris
Tuesday, February 11, 2020 - 18:30 to 20:30

During February, to celebrate Black History Month, Diversity Club at the American University of Paris will be hosting a night to showcase the diversity of Black people not only around the world, but specifically in Paris. We have invited several guests from around the city to participate in a panel discussion. We will be exploring the question of, "what does it mean to be Black and in Paris?" 

Hors d'oeuvres and refreshments will be provided. This event is open to the public. Outside guists need to RSVP to by February 9, 2020 at 20:00/8.00pm. 


Speaker Biographies

Dr. Karen Thomas

Dr. Karen Thomas has worked in both corporate and academia. She is founder and CEO/ Emeriti of Marion P. Thomas Charter School in Newark New Jersey, and has also served as an adjunct professor at each of her alma maters, Kean University, New York University and Simmons University. Prior to starting MPTCS, she was the Vice President of Marketing at ESSENCE magazine. There, she created and produced the Emmy award-winning ESSENCE Awards prime time television special and the ESSENCE Music Festival in New Orleans. She is also an author, a recipient of many awards and proclamations, and serves on several educational and not for profit boards.She is currently retired, traveling the world and studying art history at The American University in Paris.


Sarah Kouaka

Currently 29, Kouaka was born and raised in France and has developed her own meaning of being Black and in living in this city. 
Highly experienced in the media field, Kouaka is most recently Editor and Chief at Nofi Media, the first French speaking portal for Black culture. She also helps to run Negus magazine and works as a radio show host for Générations, a hip hop and soul music staion based in Paris. She can be contacted via Instagram @SarahLiionne and via Facebook by Sarah Kouaka.


Divine Matumona

Matumona is a 23 year old student studying audio and visual medias. In addition to his studies, he has experience in the fashion field. Matumona is passionate about promoting Black media and does this and more through his podcast, The Why "Le Poukwa". You can hear his latest episode at


Laurence Nama

Laurence Nama comes from Burkina Faso, and at 23 years old she has spent 5 years in Paris. Having recently received a degree in engineering with a specialization in energy, Nama is also a talented artist who's work crosses many mediums. Check out more on Instagram @Laury.S_Artistry


Béatrice Rose

Born in Yaoundé, Cameroon, Béatrice Rose has made Paris her home for the past 8 years. At 24, she is very accomplished in the media fields and runs the succesful Instagram account @GoodGirlsGoneBald. She also works as an artistic director, artist, and a model. Learn more about her on Instagram @BCommeBea


Kévi Donat

Kévi Donat, 35, is the founder of Le Paris Noir, a tour guide company in Paris offering walking tours (in both English and French) about the Black history of Paris. 
From Schoelcher, Martinique, Donat has been in Paris for the past 11 years. Having been a tour guide since 2011 and a podcaster since 2017, Donat has made himself well established in many circles in France.
His contact is available at
and @LeParisNoir on all major social media platforms.


Marvin Parks

Marvin Parks is an American jazz singer and comedian from Baltimore, Maryland. While Parks’ notoriety is from his performances in the Paris métro, he has performed in various jazz venues throughout the city and in festivals in Europe. From 2015 to 2017, he performed his one-man show “Marvin Parks: American Jazz Singer and in 2017, released his eponymous debut album on the Schema Records label. His music can be found on all digital platforms. Parks is also one of the rare Black comics performing on Paris’ expat comedy scene. 
Instagram: or @marvparks


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