ROCK ISLAND ARSENAL, Ill. - The Army Sustainment Command Equal Opportunity Office hosted the African American/Black History Month Observance, Feb. 16, in Heritage Hall.

The guest speaker was Rev. Beverly A. Smith of Mt. Zion Missionary Baptist Church. In her speech, she emphasized the importance of such observances and celebrations of achievements.

"This year's theme, Black Women in American Culture and History, allows us to recognize the significant role black women have played in the history and social, economic, political and scientific well-being of this American society," Smith said.

After her speech, the Teranga House of African Drum Circle performed a traditional African-American dance and also invited audience members to join in.

To conclude the event, Maj. Gen. Patricia McQuistion, ASC commanding general, along with Command Sgt. Maj. James Spencer, First Army Brig. Gen. Kendall Penn and Joel Himsl, garrison manager, presented recognition to the guest speaker and the performers.

"Every time we do celebrations like this I'm reminded of how people through our history do inspire generations to come," McQuistion said. "I think that is so important and what we are here for, so that we do understand the people that came before us."