Detroit Branch NAACP Official Press Statement on the Passing of Judge Damon Keith

Detroit Branch NAACP President Rev. Dr. Wendell Anthony issued the following press statement regarding the passing of Judge Damon Keith

DETROIT (April 28, 2019) – The civil rights community has lost a giant among those who have consistently fought to hold fast to the rein of justice and equity for all people. This is particularly true in the cause of Black Freedom and social justice.  Judge Damon Keith for a half century has led in this cause. An icon in the civil rights community, he has rendered uncompromising decisions from punishing illegal government wiretapping, and the racial motivation of building a wall of segregation around the City of Pontiac.

He would certainly be a thorn in the judicial side of this current administration and its treacherous policies of family separation and deportation. He was an early opponent in the judicial process to expose secret deportations and government abuse of its authority.  Judge Keith will long be remembered for his work off the bench with the NAACP. He was an early organizer and supporter of the largest sit-down Dinner in the nation, the Annual Fight For Freedom Fund Dinner of the Detroit Branch.

He was a great supporter an advocate for the City of Detroit and for African American political empowerment. Judge Keith represents an era of bold and courageous judicial principles.  These principles helped guide precedents for those too cautious to be just and sometimes too afraid to stand alone! In the words of Congresswoman Maxine Waters, “I have the gavel and I am not afraid to use it!” Judge Keith used the judicial gavel to open doors and knock down barriers.

Judge Keith will long be remembered as a true follower and believer in the works and direction of the great attorney an civil rights lawyer Charles Hamilton Houston, who said, “A lawyer is either a social engineer or he is a parasite on society.” Thank you Judge Keith for being a social engineer.  We have a spoiler alert! Look out heaven, here comes the Judge!!

The Detroit Branch NAACP is the largest branch in the Association.  For more information, please call (313) 871-2087.

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Detroit NAACP Brings Celebrity Star Power to 64th Annual Fight For Freedom Fund Dinner

DETROIT (April 9. 2019)  – The 64th Annual Fight For Freedom Fund Dinner promises to be one of excitement, high energy, and full of surprises. The stars will shine brightly on Sunday, May 5, 2019. We are pleased to announce a special red- carpet pathway for those attending the Fight For Freedom Fund Dinner. For many who have never had the red- carpet experience this is designed to make everyone attending feel special and important for this historic event. The red carpet will be held from 3:00 – 4:30 pm on Freedom Sunday.

We are pleased to announce that one of Americas foremost journalists and White House correspondent will be in attendance to receive our very special Ida B. Wells Freedom & Justice Award. She is known for her piercing questions, unrelenting pursuit of truth and transparency. She has often been chided by the President of the United States as a trouble maker and has been told to “sit down” and ask no further questions in press briefings at the White House. She is an author, writer, and Washington D.C., bureau chief of American Urban Radio Networks. She is a political analyst for CNN and was named as the Journalist of the Year in 2017 by the National Association of Black Journalists. She has covered four presidential administrations. The recipient of this prestigious award is of course journalist April Ryan.

There will be no shortage of star power at this year’s dinner. One of our very special guests is the recipient of the NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Actor in a Motion Picture. He has appeared in more than 100 films, including Menace to Society, Dead Presidents, Next Friday, Friday After Next, and Ray. He has played Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. in the film Selma, Lord, Selma. He guest starred in the Heat of the Night and Murder She Wrote. He is also a philanthropist and an advocate for those in the criminal justice system. We are pleased to welcome television and film star Clifton Powell to the city of Detroit.

Click here to read the statement in its entirety.
Detroit NAACP Brings Celebrity Star Power to
64th Annual Fight For Freedom Fund Dinner

United States Senator Kamala Harris Will Serve as Keynote Speaker for 64th Annual Fight For Freedom Fund Dinner

DETROIT (March 26, 2019) — The Detroit Branch NAACP has once again arrived at a historic moment. We are now on the eve of our 64th Annual Fight For Freedom Fund Dinner. The dinner is scheduled for Sunday, May 5, at 5pm, at the Cobo Convention Center, soon to be renamed the Chemical Bank Center.

This year will be one of the most exciting years to date. As you know, this is more than just a dinner. It is an assembly and networking opportunity to bring together persons from all walks of life. It includes business, community, faith-based, labor, grassroots, and the professional fruit from around the nation. This event is one of the jewels of the city of Detroit. No other city in America assembles together through a civil rights organization the number of people with the diversity and community outreach as the Detroit Branch NAACP.

This year we are particularly pleased as we will honor an individual whose very name and international fame is synonymous with a lifetime of achievement. He is a native Detroiter, graduate of Detroit Public Schools, former president of the Detroit Branch NAACP, and former president of the Progressive National Baptist Convention. Recognized by many as a lecturer, preacher, orator, and mentor, he is of course the Harvard Hooper, better known as the Rev. Dr. Charles G. Adams, Senior Pastor of Hartford Memorial Baptist Church. He will receive the James Weldon Johnson Lifetime Achievement Award.

As is our tradition, the Detroit Branch casts a very wide net in the grassroots community and entertainment world. This year, we will honor a man who is an entertainer and creative artist. He has sold over 35 million albums worldwide, 5 Grammy award nominations, and 45 Billboard Hot 100 songs under his belt. He is the visionary behind two thriving record labels, KonLive and Konvict Muzik. He has produced for both Lady Gaga and T-Pain. Forbes Magazine recognized him among its 100 celebrities list in 2010. Pepsi chose him to produce Oh Africa for the 2010 World Cup. Yet, it is not just for his entertainment, but it is for his enlightenment to build lighting in over 15 African nations. He is also spreading his Lighting Africa Project to the United States. He is a community person who is moved beyond entertainment to what is known as “edutainment.”.

Click below to read the press release in it’s entirety
Detroit Branch NAACP Announces Lineup for
64th Annual Fight For Freedom Fund Dinner

Detroit Branch NAACP Selects New Executive Director

DETROIT (February 4, 2019) – Rev. Dr. Wendell Anthony, President, Detroit Branch NAACP, announced at his recent installation, beginning a historic 14th term, the appointment of the Branch’s new Executive Director.

“Our search committee was appointed in July of 2018.” Said Rev. Anthony. “They held several meetings and now the work is completed. Nearly 70 applications were received, locally and nationally. After a review of all the applicants, it was narrowed down to four and of that four, three were interviewed. After much deliberation, conference calls, and discussion, the search committee brought forth a recommendation to our board for the new executive director for the Detroit Branch NAACP.

Today, we wish to announce that the new director, following the likes of former Executive Director’s:

  • Joann Nichols Watson, former Detroit City Council Member and now professor at Wayne County Community College District;
  • Attorney John E. Johnson, Jr., former City of Detroit Corporation Counsel, now Executive Director for Michigan Legislative Black Caucus;
  • Heaster Wheeler, former Assistant Executive for Wayne County and now Assistant Secretary of State;
  • Donnell White, now the Chief Diversity Officer and Director of Strategic Partnerships for Chemical

Our new Executive Director, as recommended and accepted by the Board is, Ms. Kamilia Landrum.”

“Kamilia is a child of the NAACP. She was a leader in our Youth Council. She served on the national board of directors for the NAACP. She is also involved in several community organizations. Most recently she organized our Take Your Soles To The Polls campaign for voter registration and mobilization, Back to School initiatives for Detroit Public School students, and our Second Chance Initiative for non-violent offenders seeking to have their records expunged in the criminal justice system.

She has a Bachelor of Applied Science in Business Administration and Management from Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University, and a Master of Public Administration from Wayne State University. She is a proud member of the Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc.”

Press Release — Detroit Branch NAACP Selects New Executive Director

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Rogue State Legislators and the Theft of Democracy

DETROIT (December 6, 2018) – One has to wonder whether or not we actually had midterm elections in 2018. The recent actions by Republican led state legislatures in Michigan and Wisconsin, and election controversy in North Carolina raise serious questions about maintaining the integrity of our electoral process. The actions now taken to undercut the election in the state of Michigan by the Republican dominated state legislature is more crooked than the great train robberies committed by Jesse and Frank James in the Missouri territories. The only thing the legislature in Michigan lacks is a face mask and a six shooter.

One of the framers of our democracy Thomas Jefferson said, “Whenever you do a thing, act as if all the world were watching.” During this “shame duck session,” some members of the Michigan House don’t seem to care nor are they acting as if the people are looking. They are robbing the citizens who voted overwhelmingly for Proposal 2 (Voters Not Politicians), 67-33%, designed to end the practice of gerrymandering. They are attempting to rob the people of their affirmative decision in Proposal 3 (Promote the Vote), 61-39%, designed to provide greater voter access. This is no more than a political heist of the highest order. The plan is to undercut the power of incoming Governor-Elect Gretchen Whitmer, Secretary of State-Elect Jocelyn Benson, and Attorney General-Elect Dana Nessel. In other words, they are attempting to steal the power of Michiganders who voted to change the political direction in Michigan.

Click here — Press Statement — Rogue State Legislators and the Theft of Democracy to read the statement in it’s entirety.

Detroit Branch NAACP Announces Blue Ribbon Host Committee for 2019 National NAACP Convetion

The following press statement was given by Detroit Branch NAACP President Rev. Dr. Wendell Anthony during a press conference held on Thursday, December 6, 2018.

DETROIT (December 6, 2018) – The Detroit Branch NAACP is pleased to announce plans for 2019 as we host the 110th National Convention of the NAACP, July 20-24, 2019, here in the city of Detroit. Next month, we will also be announcing plans for the 64th Annual Fight For Freedom Fund Dinner, scheduled for May 5, 2019. Today we welcome to our city NAACP President, Attorney Derrick Johnson, and other members of our Executive Board. As Detroit hosts the annual convention, it will send a signal to the rest of the nation that ALL ROADS REALLY DO LEAD TO DETROIT.

We are very excited about our special Blue-Ribbon Host Committee, chaired by Mr. Gerard Anderson, CEO of DTE Energy, led by Mr. Jerry Norcia, President of DTE Energy. DTE has been a leading partner with the NAACP locally and is expanding its reach to include an even more prominent national partnership as well. Ms. Nancy Moody, DTE Energy Vice President of Public Affairs, has been an energizing partner in plans for our 110th annual convention.

Click here — Press Statement — Detroit Branch NAACP Announces Blue Ribbon Host Committee for 2019 National NAACP Convention to read the press statement in its entirety.