On my quest to Comic Con 2014, I am NOT going to dress as this guy!
This is Olympic gold medalist Jefferson Pierce, he was born with the meta-gene (DC comics version of mutants). He donned the costume and called himself Black Lightning to battle local thugs that were threatening his neighborhood. Later he joined Batman when he formed the Outsiders and still later he joined the Justice League.
He has the ability to generate and magnify electromagnetism. Black Lightning uses this ability to fire bolts, generate force fields, among other effects. He suppressed this ability for most of his life.
He first appeared in Black Lightning #1 (April 1977), and was created by Tony Isabella and Trevor Von Eeden.