The Congressional Black Caucus Foundation has announced the chairpersons for the 39th Annual Legislative Conference (ALC), set for September 23- 26 at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center in the nation’s capital. The two members of the Congressional Black Caucus who will lead the event are Rep. Chaka Fattah (D-PA) and Rep. Yvette Clarke (D-NY). The four-day event, the largest Black political gathering in the nation, is expected to draw some 18,000 government officials, business and industry leaders, celebrities, media, emerging leaders and people from all walks of life.
Rep. Fattah was elected to Congress in 1994 and serves on two subcommittees under the powerful House Appropriations Committee. Brooklyn native Rep. Clarke, in her second term, serves on three House committees and is the chair of the Emerging Threats Subcommittee on Homeland Security.
“Reps. Fattah and Clarke have been involved with the Foundation’s events since their arrival in Congress,” said Elsie L. Scott, Ph.D., president and chief executive officer for CBCF. “We are excited about working with them in coordinating an ALC that is meaningful and timely,” she said.
“They understand the importance of what we do in the community and have supported our efforts to provide scholarships, internships and fellowships, to improve economic parity and to decrease health disparities,” remarked Rep. Kendrick B. Meek, chair of the CBCF Board of Directors.
The 42 members of the Congressional Black Caucus will lead forums on education, health care, the environment, economic development, criminal justice, housing, transportation and international affairs. This year’s conference theme is “Reinvest…Rebuild…Renew.” The conference schedule will include an awards dinner, exhibits showcase, book signings, and networking opportunities, in addition to its many forums on critical issues facing Black Americans.
The 2009 ALC will be the first annual meeting of the Congressional Black Caucus during which a Black American is serving as President of the United States. At last year’s conference, then Senator Barack Obama accepted the Harold Washington Award at the black tie gala. The Congressional Black Caucus Foundation, Inc. was established in 1976 as a nonpartisan, public policy, research and education institute to help improve the socio-economic circumstances of African Americans and other underserved communities.