Campus & Community / Magazine Feature

Former mayor joins DU students in Juneteenth parade

DU students were present among the thousands who flooded Denver’s streets for the annual Juneteenth celebration.

Around 10 members of DU’s Black Student Alliance (BSA) participated in the Juneteenth parade, which has been a part of Denver’s observance for more than three decades.

“We were incredibly excited to participate, particularly because it has an important historical context that we as a student organization find really valuable,” says BSA president Cameron Lewis, a junior journalism studies major.

Former Denver mayor Wellington Webb joined them and walked behind DU’s banner. Webb was Denver’s first African-American mayor, serving from 1991 to 2003.

“He marched behind our banner, posed for pictures with us and really wanted to support DU and the fact that we were there,” says Tracey Adams-Peters, director of  DU’s Center for Multicultural Excellence and African-American services coordinator.

The parade began at Fuller Park and proceeded through Five Points. It ended at the Blair Caldwell African-American Research Library, where the festivities continued.

“It was really exciting to have to be in the Five Points area because that’s an area a lot of us don’t see very often,” Lewis says.

Juneteenth, also known as Emancipation Day, marks the anniversary of the day Texas slaves learned they were free on June 19, 1865. It is commemorated across the United States and is an official state holiday in Texas. Colorado recognizes Juneteenth as a state holiday observance.

DU alumnus Theo Chapman (BSME ’08, MBA ’08) organized this year’s parade. The all-day event was hosted by the Colorado Black Chamber of Commerce and included live entertainment and cultural food.

For more information about Denver’s Juneteenth day, go to

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