This past Saturday, media mogul Oprah Winfrey surprised attendees at the 17th annual Maya Angelou Women Who Lead Luncheon with a major donation that will help minority students in the North Carolina area attend college.
The event, which was held in Charlotte, North Carolina and put on by the United Negro College Fund (UNCF), honored women who are making a positive difference in the community and who are helping to keep the late Maya Angelou’s legacy alive.
When Winfrey, who served as the keynote speaker for the luncheon, found out that UNCF had raised $1.15 million at the event for local deserving students to attend college, she announced that she would match the donation and help bring the total amount raised to $2.3 million.
“I believe in the power of education,” The Charlotte Observer reports Winfrey telling the audience. “There is nothing better than to open the door for someone.”
In 2007, Winfrey opened her leadership academy for young girls in South Africa and told the crowd that three of her girls had graduated from Johnson C. Smith University in Charlotte. She continued by recalling a conversation she had with the late Angelou where she told her that she believed her academy in South Africa would be her greatest legacy.
“You have no idea what your legacy is going to be because your legacy will be every life you touch,” Winfrey said Angelou told her.
Winfrey then challenged the crowd to think about their own legacy by understanding that “your legacy is how you treat everybody.”
Next year, Winfrey will return to Charlotte to campaign for healthier living as part of her “Oprah’s 2020 Vision: Your Life in Focus” tour. The wellness event is scheduled to hit the Spectrum Center in Charlotte on January 18, 2020.
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