[PHILADELPHIA, PENNSYLVANIA—MAY 16, 2019]- On Friday, May 17, 2019, the East Coast Black Age Comic Convention, Inc. (ECBACC, Inc.) will be hosting its annual Glyph Comic Awards, a ceremony that recognizes the best in comics made either by, for, or about African descended people, as well individuals who contribute to the culture. On Friday evening, one of those honored for the “2019 Pioneer/Lifetime Achievement Award” will be Maurice Waters, the Founder and President of I Am Black Sci-Fi, a media organization that focuses on sci-fi, sci-fact, and speculative events and entertainment and the measure of its impact on the Black community. Waters, a long time comic book and sci-fi enthusiast, launched the organization’s website, blacksci-fi.com, in 1999 and has since developed the brand into a premier media organization dedicated to highlighting Black creatives and fandom of speculative fiction online.
When asked about Waters’ contributions to sci-fi and comic book culture within the Black community, Akinseye Brown, Vice President and Event Coordinator of ECBACC, Inc. replied, “After coining the phrase ‘Black Science-fiction Society’, Maurice Waters created BlackSci-fi.com; a news and media site that acted as a virtual center for creative thinking, information, and awareness. Maurice taught us that the society or community of Black Science Fiction fans, though not centralized, existed and was as vast and nebulous as the worldwide web. Often drawing lines between science fiction and science fact, African culture, Black pride/consciousness, and storytelling, Black Sci-Fi.com became the space where woke nerds connected on and offline. What Maurice created simply made sense.”
Waters’ passion for black sci-fi and speculative culture, specifically as it pertains to ensuring the inclusion of Black creators on a local, national, and even global scale is unparalleled. In recent years, blacksci-fi.com has significantly grown its social following while simultaneously hosting events locally and throughout the country to shine a light on the impact sci-fi, sci-fact and speculative fiction have on black communities worldwide. In 2017, I Am Black Sci-Fi expanded its network by launching BlackSci-Fi TV, a weekly television series that airs on Comcast and Verizon Fios channels through the Philadelphia Community Access Network (PhillyCam).
When asked what’s next for I Am Black Sci-Fi, Waters replied, “My goal is to continue to grow the organization and ultimately make I Am Black Sci-Fi the premier global network for Black sci-fi, sci-fact, and other speculative related news, events and entertainment. With Philadelphia serving as its headquarters, I want to build centers within this city of promise that bridges the gap between sci-fi and STEM and inspire the imaginations of people young and old in an effort to yield innovation and creativity sourced from Black communities. Being recognized as a pioneer by my peers for something I am genuinely passionate about is a great honor, and my team and I look forward to contributing so much more in the near future.”
About Maurice Waters
Maurice Waters started his career in the Philadelphia media market as a reporter, producer, and programming assistant. Starting in the 90s, he has produced and hosted numerous Black Sci-Fi Panels and workshops along the East Coast that focused on Black Sci-Fi enthusiasts and those trying to break into the sci-fi industry. He’s worked with Temple University’s PASCEP program, Art Sanctuary’s Celebration of Black Writing, and the Big Apple Comic Con. For 6 years he was the Vice President and Event Coordinator of the East Coast Black Age of Comics Convention (ECBACC) in Philadelphia. This national convention is the largest gathering of its kind on the east coast. Through his works, he realized the demand for Black Sci-Fi products was increasing; and being a longtime collector himself, Waters decided to combine his passion for the genre with his extensive media experience. As a result, he started BlackSci-Fi.com; a website that focuses on sci-fi, sci-fact, fantasy, entertainment, news, people, places, events, and the impact of those events on the Black community. To learn more about Waters and I Am Black Sci-Fi.com visit: www.blacksci-fi.com
The East Coast Black Age of Comics Convention (ECBACC, Inc.), established in 2002, is a community-based 501(c)(3) non-profit education, literacy, and arts initiative that connects hundreds of comic book, fantasy and sci-fi creators and aficionados while serving as a network and proving-ground for the modern-day story-teller. To learn more about ECBACC, Inc. visit: www.ecbacc.org