By Angela Burgin, director, Hello Labs, Mobility and Entertainment

Black Americans have persevered through oppression since their African ancestors were first brought to this country as slaves in 1619. Since then, heroes big and small have fought to edge the black community – and all people – closer to the ideals our nation aspires to.

This February, AT&T honors lesser-known heroes by inviting up-and-coming black creatives to highlight their stories during our 10th annual AT&T 28 Days campaign.

This year’s theme, “History by Us,” invites social influencers and filmmakers to share personal videos about these unsung figures. Social media personalities Denzel Dion, Khadi Don, and Maya Washington will join Hello Labs mentees and rising filmmakers Nefertite Nguvu and Gabrielle Shepard to share the stories of triumph, strength and unbridled courage that, unfortunately, many of us may never otherwise know.

"Black History Month means everything to me being that I am of color. It represents progress, success and leaders. And it gives an even greater meaning to being ‘Black,’” said Khadi Don in a recent Q&A. “My blackness signifies more than just a color. It signifies a long history of greatness.”

Filmmakers Nefertite Nguvu and Gabrielle Shepard work to uplift the black community through their art. And we’re helping them to amplify their platforms with AT&T 28 Days. Nefertite and Gabrielle recently partnered with the AT&T Hello Labs to create short films for DIRECTV NOWSM and DIRECTV®.

Nefertite’s film “The Last Two Lovers at the End of the World” follows a pair of young lovers as they try to outsmart the end of the world. And Gabrielle’s short film “Candid" follows a street photographer’s wild journey through New York City as she mourns the death of her mother and reconciles her future and relationship with her father.

We truly stand on the shoulders of giants. But many of those giants’ contributions to our society are woefully overlooked. For the 10th anniversary of our 28 Days campaign, we’re changing that narrative. We’re giving past trailblazers due recognition using the voices of modern innovators. Having these stories told by black creatives, making history themselves, is at the very heart of “History by Us.” We’re so excited to see this come to life.

For news on upcoming campaign videos, special events and more, follow #HistoryByUs on social media. And stay tuned to AT&T 28 Days. You’re not going to want to miss a thing!

To learn more about AT&T’s commitment to diversity and inclusion, please go to