Flint, MI (February 20, 2017) – The Flint Branch of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) announced today, it’s 36th Annual Freedom Fund Gala, “Boldness in the Face of Adversity”. The black-tie optional gala will be held at 6:00 P.M. on Saturday, March 11th, 2017, at Genesys Conference and Banquet Center, 805 Health Park Blvd., Grand Blanc, MI 48439.
“The dinner provides us an opportunity to recognize our leaders, corporate citizens and young people, who continue to give and expect more of themselves, the communities in which they live, their local institutions and their country, which is why we are extremely honored to have Mr. Bankole Thompson (pictured above) as our Keynote Speaker”, says Mrs. Frances Gilcreast, President, Flint Branch NAACP.
Mr. Bankole Thompson is an opinion columnist, and a respected journalist at The Detroit News, an author and a cultural critic, with a commitment to equality and justice. To do his job as a columnist, Thompson, relies on his wide and diverse experiences, from covering the struggles of everyday people, to interviewing today’s powerful figures, including former president Barack Obama, with whom he conducted a series of sit-down interviews.
The Freedom Fund Gala is the signature fundraiser of the year. Proceeds will support youth scholarships, as well as the daily operations and efforts to address disparities and discrimination in employment, health and education within the community. The event will begin with a VIP Reception at 5:00 p.m., with dinner and entertainment at 6:00 p.m.
For ticket information please contact the branch office at 810-742-8622.
The NAACP is a leading advocate of equal access to quality education. In an effort to promote and ensure higher education opportunities for the youth in Genesee County, the Flint Branch of the NAACP has established a scholarship fund.
The NAACP Scholarship Fund is established to assist and encourage young students who are about to enter an institution of higher learning. The funds are acquired through private and community contributions. There are four (4) award categories to the NAACP scholarship; Academic, Community Service, Need Based, and a category for the Non-Traditional Student. In 2014 Hurley Medical Center has joined the NAACP in granting scholarships for students who are interested in the field of healthcare in any capacity. The NAACP Scholarship and Hurley Foundation Scholarship will be awarded at our Freedom Fund Dinner on March 11, 2017.
We are requesting that you direct eligible high school seniors to our website to complete the application.
This is a reminder that our Annual NAACP Legislative Day in Lansing is just two weeks away on Thursday, May 26, 2016. Please see the attached information and share with your local membership, family, friends, and community contacts.
Everyone should RSVP so that we have an accurate count for breakfast and lunch. Please call the Michigan Legislative Black Caucus (MLBC) office at (517) 373-5067 no later than May 20. You can also send your number of participants to the state conference at firstname.lastname@example.org. In addition, we would like to know how many youth will be in attendance.
If you have any questions and/or require additional information, please do not hesitate to contact me.
We had an outstanding Legislative Day last year (see the attached photo) and I am looking forward to another fantastic turnout this year. See you in Lansing on May 26 and please RSVP today!
Ohio Senator Nina Turner has been confirmed as the Guest Keynote Speaker for the 35th annual, NAACP Freedom Fund Dinner.
Throughout her career in public service – as a legislative aide, a cabinet member in Cleveland Mayor Michael
R. White’s administration, a lobbyist for the Cleveland Metropolitan School District, a Cleveland City
Councilmember, a State Senator and a candidate for Secretary of State – Nina Turner has made it her
mission to empower individuals, institutions, and communities to achieve their greatest greatness.
Turner is currently a professor of history at Cuyahoga Community College and Chair of Party Engagement at
the Ohio Democratic Party. In this role, Turner is involved in the planning and implementation of all
political, constituency and issue-based outreach and programming.
At Turner’s urging, Governor Kasich created the Ohio Task Force on Community and Police Relations. Turner
co-chaired the Task Force and now sits on the newly formed Ohio Collaborative Community-Police Advisory
Board –created to develop the first-ever standards for law-enforcement agencies statewide. Turner is a
board member of the Karamu House, the United Way of Greater Cleveland, and the Cleveland Police
Turner’s work ethic, empathy and commitment to public service stem largely from her humble beginnings in
Cleveland, Ohio as the oldest of seven children. Determined to rise above her circumstances and break the
cycle of poverty, Turner worked her way through school earning her Associate of Arts degree from Cuyahoga
Community College and her Bachelor and Master of Arts degrees from Cleveland State University. In 2013,
Turner received an Honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters from Wilberforce University.
Her career path first led her to Columbus, where she served as a legislative aide in the office of former
State Senator Rhine McLin. She was soon called back to her hometown to work in the administration of
Cleveland Mayor Michael R. White as his Executive Assistant for Legislative Affairs and as the Director of
Government Affairs for the Cleveland Metropolitan School District.
In 2005, Turner was elected as the first woman to represent Ward 1 on the Cleveland City Council. In 2008,
she was appointed to the vacant 25th District Ohio Senate seat and two years later was elected by her
constituents to continue her service as their voice in Columbus. As a legislator, Turner championed
innovative solutions to critical challenges, sought to promote collaboration and regionalism in local
governance and fought to maintain the economic security of the middle class.
Turner’s passionate advocacy for economic fairness, workers rights, reproductive freedom and voting rights
earned her regular appearances on national television and radio programs—such as The Ed Show, Melissa
Harris Perry Show, The Last Word with Lawrence O’Donnell, Morning Joe and the Rachel Maddow Show on
MSNBC, Wolf Blitzer on CNN, Real Time with Bill Maher on HBO, BBC World News, NPR, Rickey Smile and the
Jeff Santos Radio Show—and accolades from numerous organizations across the country. She was named 2011
State Senator of the Year by The Nation, a Drum Major for Justice in 2013 by the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
Memorial Foundation, Inside Business Magazine’s 2014 Power 100—a list of the 100 most influential CEO’s,
Politicians and Civic Leaders in Northeast Ohio—and the Power 100: Top 25 in 2015.
In 2014, Turner chose to forgo her last term as State Senator and run for Secretary of State as the
Democratic challenger to fight for free and unfettered access to the ballot box for all Ohioans. Her belief in
voting as the foundation of our democracy and the one place where we are all truly equal made her an
unrelenting and outspoken critic of voter suppression efforts across the country and resulted in an
unprecedented national grassroots fundraising operation.
Turner lives with her husband of 20+ years Jeffery Turner, Sr. in the same community in Cleveland in which
she grew up. They are the proud parents of Jeffery, Jr., a local police officer and Second Lieutenant in the
Ohio National Guard.
BALTIMORE, MD – National Association of Colored People (NAACP) President and CEO Cornell William Brooks today released the following statement regarding the Grand Jury decision in the Tamir Rice case:
“The hearts, prayers, sympathy and support of the NAACP continue to abide with the grief-stricken family of Tamir Rice and the Cleveland community.
“While the grand jury and the prosecutor have spoken, there remains a multitude of fundamental, unanswered questions. The first of those questions is why the dispatcher failed to pass along to the responding officer essential details that the suspect was likely a juvenile, possibly waving a toy gun. The fatal shooting of Tamir Rice at the hands of a rookie officer might have been prevented if those crucial details had been provided.
“And has the value of the lives of our children been reduced to a decision made in less than two seconds? That is the amount of time it took for one officer to decide whether Tamir Rice should die….less than two seconds. Life and death decisions are made every day by police officers across the country, but the benefit of the doubt is often given in the preservation of white lives while the presumption of guilt, dangerousness and suspicion, time after time, is reserved for black lives.
“The tragedy of Tamir Rice must be seen with unblinking clarity through the lens of a series of incidents of police misconduct committed by members of the Cleveland Police Department over years. Cleveland has a long record of police misconduct subject to multiple and serial federal investigations. And it is against this ugly backdrop that its citizens are being asked to “just trust us.” We must now hold accountable in the courts not merely police officers, but also hold accountable in the voting booth those who are responsible for dangerous policing. Similarly, we need and the NAACP continues to call for a national standard for excessive use of force, police retraining and systems accountability.
“More remains to be done in the streets, courts, police department, legislature, city hall and Congress. The tragically lost life of this 12-year-old child demands that we do so.”
Founded in 1909, the NAACP is the nation’s oldest and largest nonpartisan civil rights organization. Its members throughout the United States and the world are the premier advocates for civil rights in their communities. You can read more about the NAACP’s work and our five “Game Changer” issue areas here.
BALTIMORE, MD – NAACP National President and CEO Cornell William Brooks today issued the following statement in response to the mistrial declared in the trial of Baltimore City police officer William Porter. The trial was the first of six planned for police officers involved in the death of Freddie Gray on April 12, 2015.
“The NAACP has closely watched the investigation into the tragic and senseless death of Freddie Gray at the hands of those sworn to protect and serve the community. This was a tragic and extreme example of law enforcement ignoring their own official and moral protocols when it comes to policing and protecting our community, and a grim reminder of the urgent need for criminal justice and law enforcement reform in cities across America.
“As we learned in this trial, the disdain police showed for Gray clearly demonstrates that the Baltimore Police Department must change the culture of its police force and address issues of police brutality, accountability and excessive use of force. While we continue to closely follow the trials scheduled in this case, we urge Police Commissioner Davis and elected officials to work together to enact transparent reforms that can rebuild trust between officers and the communities they serve.
“While we respect the legal process and still await justice, the death of Freddie Gray and other tragedies continue to point to the need for systemic reform both within the municipal police departments and statewide. We call on the community to continue the protests while using all of the available nonviolent means to seek justice for a violent death. We still believe that Officer Porter and his fellow officers failed in their fundamental responsibility and we continue to wait for justice.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
December 16, 2015
Founded in 1909, the NAACP is the nation’s oldest and largest nonpartisan civil rights organization. Its members throughout the United States and the world are the premier advocates for civil rights in their communities. You can read more about the NAACP’s work and our six “Game Changer” issue areas here.
Editor’s Note: Each week we cross-post an excerpt from Katrina vanden Heuvel’s column at the WashingtonPost.com. Read the full text of Katrina’s column here.
As I write, New York City is witnessing its fifth day of demonstrations after a Staten Island grand jury’s decision not to indict a police officer in the Eric Garner killing. Those demonstrations followed on the protests across the country over the police shootings of Akai Gurley, a 28-year-old father of two who was slain while walking with his girlfriend in Brooklyn, Tamir Rice, a 12-year-old boy shot by a rookie Cleveland police officer while playing with a toy gun, and, most famously, the Ferguson, Missouri, police killing of Michael Brown. Conservatives joined liberals in denouncing the grand jury’s outrageous decision in the Garner case. Demonstrations have spread across the country as people of all races have taken up Garner’s plea: “I can’t breathe.”
President Obama met with some of the demonstrators in the White House, where 20-year-old Rasheen Aldridge Jr., director of Young Activists United St Louis, said they made it clear “that we are in crisis.” He added, “It is a crisis when a black American can get locked up for traffic fines, but police officers are rarely prosecuted for killing unarmed children.” The president, as another attendee later reported, “cautioned us against demanding too big and stressed gradualism. He counseled us that the wheels of progress turn sluggishly.” The Justice Department has launched special investigations into the killings of Brown and Garner. The president has announced that he will push for putting cameras on police and has convened a Task Force on 21st Century Policing with instructions to report back in 90 days.
The deaths of Garner, Brown and others at the hands of police are not the only cause sparking mass protests. The day after the Garner demonstrations started, low-wage workers walked off their jobs in more than 190 cities, demanding a living wage and the right to organize. They, too, chanted, “I can’t breathe.” Workers from fast food-restaurants such as McDonald’s were joined by those from low-wage retail and convenience stores and airline service jobs. In Washington, federal contract workers joined the march, calling on the president to issue procurement regulations that would reward good employers that pay a living wage with benefits and allow workers to organize and bargain collectively.