Diane Pien

Independent Historian

Diane Pien is a retired developmental psychologist.  She was on the faculty in the Psychology Department of University of Oregon.  She left the university to work with children with hearing impairments and hearing/visual impairments in Chicago and Seattle.  She worked at the Children’s Alliance, and retired from the City of Seattle Human Services Department planning programs for children and families of color, refugee/immigrant families, and homeless youth and children.

Dalit Panther Movement (1972-1977)

Educated youth from the slums of Mumbai, India started the Dalit Panther Movement (DPM) in June 1972, inspired by Dr. Bhimrao Ambedkar and the U.S. Black Panthers.  Dalits (“downtrodden”) are the lowest “untouchable” caste in Hinduism.  Hinduism views Dalits as sinners in their prior lives who can only redeem themselves … Read MoreDalit Panther Movement (1972-1977)

Liberty Bank Seattle Washington (1968-1988) and Liberty Bank Building

Liberty Bank was Washington State’s first primarily black-owned bank.  It opened on May 31, 1968 in Seattle’s Central District (CD) at 24Th Avenue and East Union Street.  Liberty Bank grew out of the desperate need for a black-owned bank that would lend to African American homeowners and … Read MoreLiberty Bank Seattle Washington (1968-1988) and Liberty Bank Building

Mangrove Nine Trial (1970-1972)

The Mangrove Nine Trial was Britain’s most influential Black Powertrial.  In Britain, descendants from the Caribbean, Africa, or South Asia, who were mainly immigrants from former British colonies, were considered to be “black.”  The London police and the British Home Office responsible for immigration, security and law and order orchestrated … Read MoreMangrove Nine Trial (1970-1972)

British Black Panther Party (1968-1973)

Inspired by the Black Power movement in the U.S., the Nigerian playwright, Obi Egbuna, founded the British Black Panthers (BBP) in 1968 in London’s Notting Hill.  In Britain, people of Caribbean, African, or South Asian descent, who were mainly immigrants from former British colonies, were considered to be “black.”  The tripling of Britain’s black population from … Read MoreBritish Black Panther Party (1968-1973)

Israeli Black Panther Party (1971-1977)

In 1969, Sa’adia Marciano and Charlie Biton—along with four other Moroccan-Jewish youth living in the poor Moroccan-Jewish section of Jerusalem, Israel—started meeting to discuss North African Jews’ experiences of joblessness, police beatings, housing and education discrimination, and exclusion from government political offices and positions.  When they read … Read MoreIsraeli Black Panther Party (1971-1977)

Carolyn Downs (1953-1978)

Carolyn Downs was a member of the Seattle, Washington Chapter of the Black Panther Party (SCBPP) founded by Elmer and Aaron Dixon in 1968.  She was born on May 18, 1953 in Marshall, Texas as the 13th child in a family of 16 children.  Her parents moved the family from Texas to Seattle in … Read MoreCarolyn Downs (1953-1978)

Black Panther Party’s Free Breakfast Program (1969-1980)

In 1966 Huey Newton and Bobby Seale created the Black Panther Party for Self Defense to address police oppression of blacks in Oakland, California.  Because community members also turned to the Panthers for help with economic and social problems like job discrimination and evictions, the Panthers started community services in 1969 to … Read MoreBlack Panther Party’s Free Breakfast Program (1969-1980)