This year has been a year filled with ups, downs and what-the-hell-was-that moments we’ll remember for some time. As we countdown the final days on the calendar and head into 2011, BlackEnterprise.com takes a look back at a few of the gains and losses of 2010. These are the events that have had (or that we predict will have) some impact on our economy, politics, entertainment or way of doing business. Let us know if we’ve forgotten any biggies by leaving your comments below! —The Editors
New Orleans Saints Win Super Bowl:Still struggling to make a full comeback after the hit it took from Hurricane Katrina in 2005, New Orleans became the shining example of resiliency as their football team, the Saints, delivered a win at Super Bowl XLIV on Feb. 7, 2010.
Obama Signs Health Care Bill into Law: On March, 23, 2010, in what the The New York Times calls “the most expansive legislation enacted in decades,” President Obama signs his controversial-yet-landmark national health-care bill into law. Onlookers at the signing included Victoria Kennedy, wife of the late Ted Kennedy—who had made passing such legislation his life’s work for 40 years. How did the Vice President Joe Biden sum up the moment? “Mr. President, this is a big [expletive] deal.”
iPad Has Liftoff: In April 2010, Apple changes the game (again) with the launch of the 1.5 pound iPad, selling a reported 3 million units in less than three months. The device runs the same operating system as the ubiquitous iPhone and iPod Touch. In August, Black Enterprise became the first African-American publication to launch its own iPad app. (Just sayin’.)
LeBron James Feels the Heat: After months of “Where is he going to go?” questions, LeBron James, the reigning NBA MVP and former Cleveland Cavalier announced on July 8, 2010, that he was taking his show on the road… to the Miami Heat. How did he get the word out? By having his very own special on ESPN (a move the network later admitted they regretted because of the perception that they could be muscled by a player) called The Decision. Disgruntled fans burned jerseys in Cleveland, while Heat players Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh, we’re sure, let out a sigh of relief. Some say it’s a smart move for LeBron, even if for no other reason than the fact that the state of Florida doesn’t have income tax.
From Social Secretary to CEO: After an eventful stint in the Obama administration, Desiree Rogers became CEO of Johnson Publishing, publishers of Ebony and Jet magazines, in August 2010. In addition to bringing about what we’re sure is an unrivaled slew of connections, Rogers, who was covered as much in the press for her impeccable fashion sense as she was for her smarts, brings “a proven track record of successful business leadership,” said Linda Johnson Rice, daughter of the company’s founder who held the title previously and will remain as chairman.
Republicans Take Control of the House: In what many deemed a political smackdown of sorts, the Republicans seized control of the House of Representatives in the Nov. 2 mid-term elections. The victory was reportedly the biggest House gain for the party since 1938. President Obama said the new dynamic of a divided government doesn’t deter from the mission “to find common ground, move the country forward and get things done for the American people.” The first compromise, the extension of the Bush Tax cuts and unemployment benefits.
GM Makes a Comeback: After emerging from bankruptcy in July thanks to a massive $50 billion government bailout, General Motors (which is still 60% owned by the U.S. government) returned to the stock market, offering common shares priced at $32-$33 each on Nov. 17. According to The Wall Street Journal, GM in its IPO sold more shares than expected at a higher price than originally planned. “Two years ago this seemed impossible,” President Obama said. “In fact, there were plenty of doubters and naysayers who said it couldn’t be done.” (Looking for automotive investments? Check out four stocks BE experts think you should consider).
President Obama Signs Repeal of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell: On Dec. 22, President Obama proudly used 15 ceremonial pens to sign the repeal of the age-old policy of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell,” which prohibits gay and lesbian soldiers from serving openly in the military. Although the policy remains in effect until the military certifies that it is ready to comply, the president said the repeal was a milestone that “redeemed the sacrifice of gay men and women who fought in every war beginning with the 18th century battle for independence.”