Observed on June 19, Juneteenth commemorates the end of slavery in the United States. Also known as Freedom Day, Jubilee Day, Liberation Day, and Emancipation Day, Juneteenth recognizes June 19, 1865, as the day enslaved people in Galveston, Texas, received news that they were freed from slavery nearly three years after President Abraham Lincoln signed the Emancipation Proclamation. The African American community has since celebrated Juneteenth for more than 150 years.

On June 17, 2021, President Biden signed into law a bill that had passed both the House and the Senate, making Juneteenth the 11th holiday recognized by the federal government.

Juneteenth recognizes the emancipation of African Americans and further emphasizes the education and achievement of the African American community and the work that remains to be done.

James Wimbush

I encourage the IU community to take time to reflect on the meaning of this important moment in history and to think about what each of us can do—individually and collectively—to ensure an equitable world for all.

James C. Wimbush, Vice President for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, Interim IUB Vice Provost for Diversity and Inclusion, and Johnson Chair for Diversity and Leadership