Background of the 21st Century Agenda for Jobs and Freedom
On December 3, 2012 and January 25, 2013, Marc H. Morial, President & CEO of the National Urban League; Rev. Al Sharpton, founder and President of the National Action Network; Benjamin Jealous, President & CEO of the NAACP; and Melanie Campbell, President and CEO of the National Coalition on Black Civic Participation convened nearly 60 of America's leading civil rights, social justice, business and community leaders in Washington, D.C.
These meetings of African American Leaders Convening (AALC) were historic and unprecedented and were the first steps in developing a public policy agenda targeting the primary challenges facing African Americans, urban communities and all low-income and working-class Americans.
The ensuing discussions and debates resulted in the identification of five urgent domestic goals for the nation:
The AALC has since worked to further expand these goals to include guiding core principles and corresponding legislative policy priorities and other recommendations.
As such, the policy recommendations contained herein will serve as a working document, or action plan – to be revised, amended and updated accordingly – aimed at achieving these five goals and moving our communities toward economic empowerment, equality and prosperity.
Moving forward, additional issues of import that have not initially been reflected in these recommendations may be included. However, the current goal of this document is to develop a priority, rather than comprehensive, agenda to ensure maximum impact in the aforementioned five areas.
African American Leaders Convening (AALC)
Members and Agenda Signatories
Marc H. Morial President
CEO, National Urban League
Rev. Al Sharpton
Founder/President, National Action Network
Melanie L. Campbell
President/CEO, National Coalition on Black Civic Participation (NCBCP); Convener, Black Women's Roundtable
Rep. Marcia L. Fudge
U.S. Rep. (OH), Chair of the Congressional Black Caucus
Marian Wright Edelman
President, Children's Defense Fund
President, Leadership Conference of Civil and Human Rights and Counsel to the Leadership Conference Education Fund
Esq. Exec. Dir., The Lawyers Committee for Civil Rights Under Law
SVP, Advocacy and Public Policy, NAACP
Rep. Emanuel Cleaver II
U.S. Representative (MO)
Burrell Ellis CEO
Dekalb County, Georgia
Rev. W. Franklyn Richardson Chairman
Conference of Black Churches
Dr. Barbara Williams-Skinner
President, Skinner Leadership Institute and Co-Chair, National African-American Clergy Network
Pastor Jamal Harrison Bryant
Empowerment Temple AME Church
Lezli Baskerville, Esquire
President/CEO, National Association for Equal Opportunity in Higher Education
Dr. Avis Jones-DeWeever
Exec. Director, National Council of Negro Women
Dr. E. Faye Williams, Esq.
Chair, National Congress of Black Women
Partner, The Dewey Square Group
Rev. Lennox Yearwood
President/CEO, Hip Hop Caucus
President, National Urban League Young Professionals
National Black Youth Vote! Coordinator, NCBCP
Secretary-Treasurer, National Education Association
Secretary-Treasurer American Postal Workers Union
Clayola Brown National
President, A. Phillip Randolph Institute
Executive Vice President, AFL-CIO
Terry Melvin President
Coalition of Black Trade Unionists
Cloves Campbell, Jr. Chairman
National Newspaper Publishers Association
William G. Tompkins Jr.
President, National Newspaper Publishers Association
Robert S. Johns Executive
Director, National Dental Association
Jerald L. Tillman
Founder, National African-American Insurance Association
Chair, National African-American Insurance Association
President/CEO, Conference of Minority Transportation Officials
Dr. Ron Daniels
Founder, State of the Black World 21st Century
Ron Busby, Sr.
President, U.S. Black Chamber, Inc.
President, Potomac Coalition, Federal Home Loan Bank
Harry E. Johnson
President/CEO, The Memorial Foundation, Inc.
Chairman, 100 Black Men, Inc.
Director, Washington Legislative Office, ACLU
Founder/CEO, Perennial Law Group, LLP
Dr. Elsie Scott
Director, Ronald Walters Leadership/Public Policy Ctr., Howard Univ.
Dr. Bernard Anderson
Chair, National Urban League Council of Economic Advisors
Dr. Michael Eric Dyson
Professor of Sociology, Georgetown University
President/CEO, Joint Center for Political and Economic Studies
Dr. Stephen J. Thurston
President, National Baptist Convention of America, Incorporated, International
Angela T. Rye, Esq.
Founder and Director, Impact
Attorney, activist and radio host