Climbing Kilimanjaro

How much do you know about Mount Kilimanjaro? I must admit, before last Thursday, I knew two things: 1-it’s in Africa; and, 2-it’s one of the highest mountains in the world. Thanks to the BND Institute of Media and Culture and the Black History Museum, we were able to spend ‘An Evening on Kilimanjaro,’ featuring a man I’m honored to call friend and a true Renaissance Man, Robert L. Dortch, Jr. Robert wowed us with his enlightening story of successfully reaching the peak of Mount Kilimanjaro. Moderated by the humorous Kym Grinnage, and featuring an introduction by my good friend and Tanzania-born and raised, Zarina Fazaldin, the event was simply inspirational. On average, only 50 percent of people who climb Mount Kilimanjaro reach the summit, and of that number, only 1percent are Black. And now all of Richmond can boast that we know someone in that 1percent!

Renee Walston Johnson

December12, 2022

Learn more about Mr. Dortch’s journey in this Nov. 3, 2022 Richmond Free Press article:

An Evening on Kilimanjaro: Richmond Free Press December 8, 2022.