Celebrating Black History Month: Highlighting Kendrick Hagins, IT Manager

In celebration of Black History Month, we sat down with Kendrick to discuss his life, motivations, and heritage. Here is a transcript of the interview we conducted.

Who has served as an inspiration in your life?

I have had many major influencers and contributors in my life. My wife, kids, parents, grandparents, uncles, aunts, siblings, and pastor. They say it takes a village to raise a child and, in this thing, called life, those inspirations continue to present themselves.

What motivates you? / What is your biggest inspiration?

Kendrick (right) with members of the Information Technology team

My family is what motivates me. My family set splendid examples and exacting standards while growing up in Houston, TX (3rd Ward). To be more specific, I would like to highlight my grandmothers, Norma Jean Lee and Lillian Simpson Williams, who were the pillars of my family. These women were graceful, elegant, and commandeering. Those ladies meant the world to me. So many precious life skills and moments were transferred to me from them and now I know where some of my characteristics originated from. Often presented with adversity, they would figure out a way to make it work. They embodied strong faith, sound morals, and values.

Those traits that they planted took me in a completely different direction. We may have been low income, but I would have never known that was the case. My life was much richer in other ways and my grandmothers would never let me experience anything less. Negative aspects of life were always present, but thankfully I never did gravitate to those ways. Through adversity, you must inspire to be the best version of “You” that you can be. Emulate, gather, and nurture those things that inspire and mold them to what makes you who you are.

What does Black History Month mean to you?

Sigh…. Unfortunately, there must be a Black History Month, but did you know these life changing inventions were created by African Americans?

  • The Traffic Light
  • Elevator
  • The Light Bulb
  • Air Conditioning Unit

I am extremely proud to be in the skin that I am in. Black History Month means attempting to be relevant and inspirational to all that I may encounter in some form or fashion. It means changing whatever narrative is present and not only setting the example but being the example. Every day, I am trying to be trend setting, life changing and stay hopeful to contribute to the ever-growing legacy of Black History.

How do you feel your Heritage has contributed to who you are today?

Oxford Dictionary defines heritage as a person’s unique, inherited sense of family identity: the values, traditions, culture, and artifacts handed down by previous generations. My heritage has helped me become a productive contributing citizen in society. This means being humble, confident, and thankful. Thankful to know I can explore my full potential that was paved by my family, African Kings, Queens, and other great African American Figures. It also means allowing me not to settle, set goals, and pursue my dreams. My heritage has taught me principles and values transcend time and it will continue to mold and fortify who I am today and whom I will finally become.