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NAJEE’S NOTES: Karen Bass hosts national black leadership summit

More than 1,000 black leaders from across the nation attended a national black leadership summit held on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C., hosted by U.S. Rep. Karen Bass, chair of the Congressional Black Caucus.

Once I received my invitation, I made my reservations immediately to get to D.C. Bass is a dear friend. We have known each other and worked together in the trenches for more than 25 years dating back to her activist days as a leader in the South Los Angeles grassroots community organization the Community Coalition she co-founded after the civil unrest in 1992

I’ve watched Bass grow and evolve from organizing and leading protests against the proliferation of liquor stores in our community to running successfully for the state Assembly where she made history as the first African-American woman to become speaker. Bass then went on to win a landslide victory to replace the retiring Rep. Diane Watson in Congress.

In Congress, Bass has become chair of Congressional Black Caucus, and one of a select few African-American congressional leaders actually able to work with both parties to get things done on behalf of her constituents.

Once Bass made the call for us to come D.C., several other leaders from our community heard the call and we responded by showing up ready to listen and work. Day 1 of the National Black Leadership Summit was hosted by the Congressional Black Caucus and Day 2 was hosted by the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation.

The CBC summit focus was the importance of the census, and how labor and the clergy are preparing for 2020. Based on what many members of our community have seen and been affected by during this current presidential administration, this summit was timely.

The information and marching orders that our CBC leadership gave was critical. More on that next week.

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