Last Saturday, Oprah attended the United Negro College Fund’s (UNCF) Maya Angelou Women Who Lead Luncheon in Charlotte, NC because she is in fact a woman that leads and has been leading for decades. People are called leaders for several reasons such as being the first to break barriers, the first to appear on a billionaire list, or actually setting an example for both women and men alike for both current and future generations to come.
The event sponsored by Wells Fargo was a fundraiser held by the UNCF to raise money to support the Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) they represent. With over 1,100 people in attendance, the UNCF was able to raise over $1 million. Or so they thought.
Oprah approached the podium and said, “We do want to make this the world record-breaking event. So here’s what I’m going to do, I’m going to match that number!” The number she matched was $1.15 million that was shown on the video screen which held the count of the funds raised over the course of the night. Winfrey's announcement was met with a standing ovation and praise from the guests of the luncheon. The UNCF had a goal of raising $1 million for the event and Oprah helped them double this number.
Oprah is no stranger to HBCUs as she is a graduate of Tennessee State University, so she knows every dollar can help advance the mission, vision, culture, and importance of these storied institutions.
In her speech, Oprah said, “I believe in the power of education. “There is nothing better than to open the door for someone.” Because of her donation, you get a college education, and you get a college education, and you get a college education!