Press Release

‘Black Astronomers and Astrophysicists’

February 10, 2020 – by Cole Hatcher

Ohio Wesleyan’s Perkins Observatory will launch its new diversity series Feb. 21 with a discussion on ‘Black Astronomers and Astrophysicists.’ (Photo by Paul Molitor)

Perkins Observatory Launches Diversity Series with Feb. 21 Black History Month Presentation

DELAWARE, Ohio – Perkins Observatory is launching a new series celebrating the many diverse groups who have contributed to our understanding of the cosmos.

The series will begin this month with Charles Lusco of the Columbus Astronomical Society presenting “Black Astronomers and Astrophysicists: An Overview of the Past and Present Members of the Scientific Community.”

In honor of African American History Month, Lusco will speak at 8 p.m. Feb. 21 at the Ohio Wesleyan University-owned observatory, 3199 Columbus Pike (U.S. 23), Delaware.

Don Stevens, director of the observatory, said, Lusco’s talk is “the first of what will hopefully be a semi-regular monthly event,” with future programs to recognize the contributions of women, Latin American, and LGBTQ astronomers and scientists.

The diversity series will continue at 8 p.m. March 20 with Ness Mayker, president of the Columbus Astronomical Society, discussing women in astronomy in celebration of Women’s History Month.

Charles Lusco
Charles Lusco

Reservations are strongly recommended these and all Perkins Observatory events, as many programs sell out. Advance tickets are $10 and $2 more if purchased at the door. To reserve tickets or determine at-the-door availability, call (740) 363-1257.

Following the diversity series talks, guests will be invited to observe with telescopes weather permitting. This may include using the 32-inch Schottland Telescope and telescopes provided by Columbus Astronomical Society volunteers.

Founded in 1923, Perkins Observatory is an active research facility used by Ohio Wesleyan students and faculty. “The Place for Space” also conducts hundreds of public programs and welcomes tens of thousands of visitors each year. Learn more at

Founded in 1842, Ohio Wesleyan University is one of the nation’s premier liberal arts universities. Located in Delaware, Ohio, the private university offers more than 90 undergraduate majors and competes in 25 NCAA Division III varsity sports. Through Ohio Wesleyan’s signature OWU Connection program, students integrate knowledge across disciplines, build a diverse and global perspective, and apply their knowledge in real-world settings. Ohio Wesleyan is featured in the book “Colleges That Change Lives” and included in the U.S. News & World Report and Princeton Review “best colleges” lists. Learn more at