About The African-American Heritage Advisory Board

The African American Heritage Advisory Board (AAHAB) was established to preserve the history and culture Africans and Americans of African descent by emphasizing their contributions to the Aurora, throughout America and across the globe. AAHAB has a charge to educate and bridge community interests. 

Annually, AAHAB hosts the annual Heritage Dinner where it honors the Henry Cowherd Scholarship recipients, awarded to high school seniors of African descent who are in good academic standing, demonstrate innovative leadership and who give back through volunteer service in and outside of school.

AAHAB also sponsors the annual African-American Achievers Academy of Aurora (A5) Leadership Program, a youth leadership training institute, created by the AAHAB, designed to educate, empower, inspire, and invigorate high school students by providing leadership skills that promote and enhance the quality of life for themselves, their families, and the community.. 




Hello, my name is Willie Mayes chairman of The African American Heritage Advisory Board. I thank you for helping us celebrate the well deserved Outstanding  African American of 2018,  Dr. Darrell Echols. We also recognized our talented Henry Cowherd Scholars. We want to take every opportunity we have to show these students that focus, hard work and dedication are recognized, appreciated and will benefit them in their future endeavors.

There were students, parents, teachers, administrators, political  leaders, fireman, police officers, community leaders, religious leaders, and all that make up a community.  Even  though we are the second largest city in the state of Illinois,  Aurora is still a close knit community that bands together in times of adversity and rises to the occasion in times of celebration. I was honored to be there to witness our community come together for the greater good, and this is one of the many reasons why I am proud to be an Aurora resident.

I’ve only been the chairman for a short period of time, prior to that we had a magnificent chairman Patricia Holt that we would like to not only recognize at this time but show her how much we appreciated her sacrifice, dedication and endless hours of community service.

On behalf of the City of Aurora, the African American Heritage Advisory Board warmly greets you. We are a non-partisan advisory board that is community based and funded by the City of Aurora. Our purpose is to provide education to the community and act as a bridge between the African American community and all other communities within the City of Aurora. The vision of the African American Heritage Advisory Board is to preserve the history and the culture of Africans and Americans of African descent. We seek to emphasize the contributions of Americans of African descent and their contribution to the City of Aurora, world history, humankind, cross culture, American history and democracy. 

Board Members


Willie Mayes


Jacquelyn Spires

Vice President

Debra Goss-Johnson


Toshia Moss

Ricky Rodgers

Cynthia Miller

Avis Miller

Adrienne Coleman 

Marc Dale

Kim Harris 

Brandon Hayes

Kyle Welton

David E. Smith Jr.

Liason COA