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EVENT DETAILS

 

We are excited to see you at our first Community Event.

Check out the agenda below for details about the event. Use our map to find event locations.

Please be advised that participating venues and businesses will adhere to all recommended CDC guidelines. Please respect the hosts' covid guidelines. For more information from the CDC on how to keep you and others safe, visit their website here.

If you cannot join us in person, please click here for our virtual experience!

Madison Community Art Center

10 King Road

  • Art Gallery

  • 11:30 am - 12:00 pm: Panel Discussion with descendants, Session I

  • 1:30 pm - 2:00 pm: Panel Discussion with descendants, Session II

  • 2:30 pm - 3:00 pm: Live performance by Madison High School Students

9 Main Street

  • Meet the Artist

  • View the Artist's Picks from the student work

  • Craft your own Hidden Figures of Madison (on-site or grab a kit to go)

  • Purchase the official Hidden Figures 2021 t-shirt (cash or zelle)

36 Cook Avenue

  • 12:00 pm - 6:00 pm

  • Historical tour of the Church and garden

  • Fish Fry with soda or water: 

    • Sandwich and slaw: $9​

    • Fish dinner with mac & cheese and greens: $12

Window Displays

Around Town (check map)

  • Cramer's Carpet

  • Madison Hat Shop

  • Prima

  • Kennedy's All-American Barber Club

  • Harvest Bistro

 

Event Location Map

Visit us at the main gallery spaces in the Madison Community Art Center and the Museum of Early Trades & Crafts Education Annex.

Look for window displays around downtown businesses.
Come check out the Little Diverse Library.

 

Virtual Experience

 

Artist's Pick Gallery

Click on an image to view details and start the slide show

Baseball Card - George D. Kelsey
Baseball Card - Francis Sellers
Baseball Card - Everett Kelsey
Baseball Card - Don Newcombe
Fabric Square - Bill Hagens
Fabric Square - Don Newcombe
Fabric Square - Bill Primus
Poster - Charlotte Nebres
Poster - Bill Primus
2D Fabric Piece - Judge
Collaborated 2D Fabric with Logo
 
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Virtual Book Party

Diversity and representation have never been more important. Are you looking for a way to diversify your library at home? Please consider joining the Hidden Figures Book Party for a Cause! All purchases will support the Little Diverse Library, started by two young girls in Madison, NJ. Located just outside of the Museum of Early Trades and Crafts, the library shares books with diverse authors, characters, and storylines with the community.


Please join the Hidden Figures of Madison Book Party for a Cause by clicking below!

Participate in the party June 6th 8:00 pm - 9:00 pm.


Win one of the many amazing giveaways including books, museum tickets, official apparel, and more. The more you participate, the more chances you have to win!



Learn more about the Little Diverse Library Project here.

 
Logo of Hidden Figures of Madison. Their Stories, Our History.

During the Summer of 2020, the Community Conversations group invited Madison, NJ citizens to gather and have the difficult but necessary dialogue needed when a spotlight was shining on one of the most egregious crimes of injustice in our nation. During one of the meetings, a community mural space was suggested, where Madison's citizens could continuously reflect, converse and consider the paths that led to what we witnessed. The refined mural project became the Hidden Figures of Madison. The Hidden Figures of Madison project vision is to create spaces where Madison, NJ residents can learn about their town from the perspective of the underrepresented ethnic groups who have added and continue to add to Madison's and our nation’s fabric. 

Spring 2021: The Hidden Figures of Madison project aims to shine a light on Madison’s community members’ untold stories through visual arts and literature created by the Madison Borough School District students. Bringing these stories to light through our students’ inspired work will help connect their stories to our history.

 

Madison's First Families

From a revered federal judge to the young first Black Lead in the NYC Ballet production of The Nutcracker, our town has a rich Black history full of accomplishments, triumphs, and legacy that has shaped our present.

Our committee members have been conducting extensive research into some of these extraordinary lives. Click the button below to discover Madison's Hidden Figures.

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Who We Are

Get to Know Us

 
Kenisha

Kenisha Tucker (Bonfield)

Co-founder and Lesson Coordinator

I am a native Jamaican and a naturalized American citizen who moved to Madison, NJ in 1990.  I was raised along with my two siblings Sharela and Kamur, by our grandmother Muriel Bonfield. I graduated from Madison High School in 1999. My husband, Rohan Sr. and I met at the Friendly’s, now the Haven Savings Bank on Main Street. After getting married and living in East Stroudsburg, PA for nine years, we returned to Madison, NJ in November of 2011, where we are now raising our five children (Ella, Rohan Jr., Lincoln, Logan, and Ava). I earned my BA degree cum laude in Science and Human Development degree with a Certification in Family, Child & School at New Jersey’s Montclair State University where I am continuing my studies at Montclair State University pursuing my MA in Reading with a Reading Specialist Certification.
The vision for the Hidden Figures of Madison project was birth during the summer of 2020 when our nation heard one of the loudest cries for racial justice during my lifetime. I hope that the Hidden Figures of Madison project will be a platform for the untold stories in our history to be heard.

Sharela

Sharela Coon-Bonfield

Co-Founder, Collaborating Artist, and Lesson Coordinator

I am a Jamaica-born, Brooklyn-based textile artist. I immigrated to the United States at the age of seven. I was raised by my grandmother, Muriel Louise Bonfield, who owned a seamstress shop in Jamaica before migrating to the United States. I was fortunate to have her sewing knowledge passed on to me. While attending Madison High School (Madison, New Jersey), I attended The Fashion Institute of Technologies Precollege programs in New York City. After graduating high school, I attended the Maryland Institute College of Art (Baltimore, MD), majoring in Fiber Arts.
In 2011, I moved to Brooklyn, where I began teaching artists through a two-year fellowship with the Joan Mitchell Foundation. I continue to teach with the Guggenheim’s Learning Through Art Program and Studio in a School. I have exhibited nationally and have worked in the permanent collection of the Fortune Society. I also participated in the First Friday Residency with the Jamaica Center for Arts and Learning. I use textile art as a catalyst to explore the ambiguities of language, popular culture, and race. I am intrigued with the intimacy of textiles; their texture, the grid of the weave, and the cultural roles of the medium.  My work often focuses on my perception of Americana as an immigrant woman of color. I use textile art to explore language, popular culture, and race as an immigrant woman of color.

Deborah

Deborah Farrar Starker

Committee Member; Venue and Promotion

I serve as the Executive Director of the Museum of Early Trades & Crafts (METC) in Madison, NJ. I hold a B.S. in Marketing and Economics from NY Stern School of Business and an M.A. in Museum Professions from Seton Hall University and have over 20 years of experience in the arts and culture sector. Leading a history museum at this pivotal time in our history is exciting and challenging.  We have an opportunity to be an integral part of the larger community with the ability to work collaboratively with all people to build connections, discuss topics that address current events, and present history as a way to inform our future.  I am a Native New Yorker but have lived in Madison for 30 years with my husband, Isaac, a surgeon.  We raised two independent and intelligent daughters who are products of the Madison Public School system and are now successful professionals working in pharmaceutical digital strategies and collegiate athletic compliance.  The Hidden Figures of Madison project has been an extraordinary and wonderful collaboration—although my part in this was very small! Working with these women has been such a joy, and they all inspire me to be a better, more caring human and a staunch advocate for tolerance, justice, and equality.

Deb

Deb Coen

Committee Member; Venue/Financial Liaison

After attending Drew University in the 1990s, I moved back to Madison with my husband and three children in 2004.  I have been teaching for 24 years and am currently teaching High School Technology and Engineering in West Orange. I previously served on the Madison Board of Education, and am currently in my third year serving on the Madison Borough Council; having served for two years as the liaison to the Board of Health, I am now serving as the liaison to Community Affairs.  As a member of the council, in July 2020, I began a program called Community Conversations to bring Madison together in light of the racial unrest throughout the country. It was a way for people to discuss and learn about each other, and what the community could (and can) do to ensure that everyone is heard and we are meeting the needs of everyone that lives in Madison. Through that, the discussions began about a mural in town from Kenisha and evolved into The Hidden Figures of Madison project. 
Working on this project has been a way to learn about the very rich history of the under-represented and under-served populations of Madison. Working with the committee has been so educational, as well as enjoyable, it is a project I look forward to continuing in the future. Being able to understand Madison’s history, has added to my desire to be more aware of how our history influences us, as well as how to support those who are seeing injustice and inequity as a part of their daily lives.

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Danielle Nebres

Committee Member; Research Contributor

I’m a native New Yorker born in Brooklyn and raised in the Midwest. I hold a B.A. in Political Science with minor coursework in Journalism and Anthropology from Auburn University. I’ve resided in Madison, NJ with my husband and three children since 2011. Before moving to Madison, I worked in television and briefly attended law school. When not working with my children, I volunteer in the community and serve as the Service Unit Manager for Madison’s over 500 Girl Scouts and troop leaders. I am a board member at a cultural institution and also enjoy teaching cooking classes and blogging about Caribbean food.

 It’s been meaningful to be a part of the Hidden Figures of Madison project from its beginnings during the immensely consequential summer of 2020. Countering the relentless images of racial violence by celebrating and uplifting POC proved to be very healing for me. The work on this historical preservation committee particularly speaks to my passion for exploring family origins and biographical narratives. It has been my honor to connect with so many families in the course of researching the accomplishments of these outstanding Madisonians represented in the Hidden Figures of Madison project. Bringing awareness to their achievements is long overdue and will be a foundation for what is sure to be a continued legacy of Black excellence and contributions in our community. 

Support Us

Help Us Succeed

 
Donating Money

give a financial gift

Art Kits. Venue Rental. Artist Stipend.

Extra funds towards future projects related to Hidden Figures of Madison Past and Present.
Add note for your donation: Hidden Figures

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Spread the Word

Share your support with your community members.

Download, print, and share our flyer by clicking the button.