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Archive for December 13th, 2016

NAACP Condemns Hate Crimes in New York and Nation

Posted by Admin On December - 13 - 2016 ADD COMMENTS

BALTIMORE – The NAACP, the nation’s oldest and largest civil rights organization, condemns the most recent episode in the post-election surge in hate incidents: racist sidewalk graffiti on a residential street in Mineola, New York that included swastikas, anti-black and anti-Muslim slurs, and the statement: “Make America White Again.”


“The slogan ‘Make America White Again,’ springs from a poisonous well, watered by the hateful rhetoric of the Trump campaign. The attempts to romanticize an era of our nation history highlighted by racial polarization, has instead, opened a floodgate of hate against America’s most vulnerable groups,” said Cornell William Brooks, President, and CEO of the NAACP.


A startlingly similar incident occurred in upstate New York on November 9, where a baseball dugout in Wellsville, NY was vandalized with swastikas and the same white supremacist play on President-elect Trump’s campaign slogan. Governor Andrew Cuomo immediately ordered a joint investigation by the New York State Police and the State Division of Human Rights.


The two graffiti incidents are examples of 69 cases reported statewide and 867 nationwide incidents of hateful harassment reported to the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) in the first 10 days after the election. Of the total 867, 32.3 were motivated by anti-Muslim sentiment, 21.6 percent were motivated by anti-black sentiment, and 23.3 percent occurred on November 9 alone.


“The NAACP has been fighting against race hatred for more than a century,” said Dr. Hazel Dukes, President of the NAACP New York State Conference, and member of the National Board of Directors. “We will not sit idly by while cowards attempt to return our society to a time when racist behavior and thought was the norm. I implore the people of the state of New York to stand with the NAACP in refusing to tolerate any such vile displays of hate in our communities.”


The NAACP is calling for thorough investigation of the Mineola, NY incident and continued policing of hate incidents throughout the nation. We will continue to work with our more than 2 million digital activists, nearly half million card-carrying members and 2,200 local units across the country to take legal, legislative and community action against the acts of hate that threaten to ravage and regress our society.

Photo: Cornell William Brooks, President, and CEO of the NAACP.


Harvey, Illinois Citizens Continue to Protest Ongoing Corruption and Intimidation

Posted by Admin On December - 13 - 2016 ADD COMMENTS

A group of more than one hundred citizens in Harvey, Illinois, continued to build and put forth a bold public effort to demand an end to widespread corruption under the leadership of Mayor Eric Kellogg during a long delayed city council meeting.  Groups like Harvey Citizens Take Action Together and the Har-V Coalition, formed as widespread illegalities, intimidation, and structural decay have become more acute in recent years, led efforts to pressure Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan to press charges against Mayor Kellogg.

The group, which consisted of Harvey Citizens Take Action Together, Har-V Coalition, other groups and individuals gathered outside the Office of the City Clerk yesterday to demand action on Harvey Corruption at the City Council Meeting and demand an end to widespread corruption and decay in Harvey.

W.K. Kellogg Foundation and Broad Coalition Announce National Day of Healing on January 17, 2017

Posted by Admin On December - 13 - 2016 ADD COMMENTS

Working with more than 130 partners in its Truth, Racial Healing & Transformation enterprise, WKKF seeks to advance racial healing in communities across the country to create environments where all children can thrive 

WKKF CEO and President, La June Montgomery Tabron

Carlsbad, CA (BlackNews.com) – With racial divisiveness rising in Americas urban, rural and suburban communities, today the W.K. Kellogg Foundation (WKKF), together with more than 130 organizations committed to the Truth, Racial Healing & Transformation (TRHT) enterprise, called for a National Day of Healing on January 17, 2017. On that day, activities by community, civic, government and corporate leaders will spur efforts to heal the wounds created by racial, ethnic and religious bias and build an equitable and just society so that all children can thrive.

As a nation, we must come to terms with the deep divides in our communities, said WKKF President and CEO La June Montgomery Tabron. Our nation is crying out for healing, which can only come with a shared understanding of our collective past and a sustained effort to dismantle the structures, policies, practices and systems that divide us, and perpetuate conscious and unconscious bias.

Ms. Tabron said the National Day of Healing is a response to the broad call for healing following the contentious rhetoric, hate crimes, vivid expressions of racism and stories of children crying with fear and anxiety. Calls for healing have come from both President Obama and President-elect Trump, as well as 32 states.

We envision that government, private sector and non-profit entities will join this call for healing to kick off a year, said Ms. Tabron. Let us remind ourselves that we are not a nation of demolition workers trying to destroy institutions, but rather a community of creative construction workers seeking to build bridges and commonality that will ensure a more perfect union and oneness within our country.

A National Day of Healing will kick-off a year-long effort to bring healing to different parts of this country, in follow-up to this weeks TRHT Summit, where 570 representatives from committed organizations and communities gathered in Carlsbad, California, to discuss implementation of TRHT in communities, organizations and by individuals. Underscoring the widespread reach and influence of TRHT, the community, corporate and non-profit partners have a collective network of more than 289 million Americans.

TRHT will focus on transformation in America – the nation was conceived in the constitution and built on a belief in racial hierarchy, a collective national consciousness that has dominated the educational, economic, social and legal discourse for centuries. TRHT will provide a collective commitment and long-term determination to embrace a new narrative for the nation, a belief in our common humanity.

Former Mississippi Gov. William Winter, honorary co-chair of TRHT, reiterated his support for TRHT and the National Day of Healing. In remarks at the summit, Gov. Winter said the healing day and TRHT efforts are important from the standpoint of renewing in each of us the determination to see that the progress that we have made in terms of race relations and racial justice and racial healing is not permitted to slip backward… that will happen unless we take the responsibility to seeing to it that it does not happen. We have a huge job to do…

In a video presentation at the summit, former Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick, also an honorary TRHT co-chair, said I respect and am enthusiastic about the effort because as a nation we need a healing. I am a great believer of integration. People dont talk about it anymore or talk that way anymore. When I talk about integration, its not just the legal stuff, as important as that has been over the decades, (but) living integrated lives. I think it was King (Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.) who said, We fear each other because we dont know each other. Knowing each other means understanding each other.

In the coming weeks, WKKF and TRHT collaborating organizations will offer recommendations on how communities might consider creating local activities and events for the National Day of Healing.
About the W.K. Kellogg Foundation

The W.K. Kellogg Foundation (WKKF), founded in 1930 as an independent, private foundation by breakfast cereal pioneer, Will Keith Kellogg, is among the largest philanthropic foundations in the United States. Guided by the belief that all children should have an equal opportunity to thrive, WKKF works with communities to create conditions for vulnerable children so they can realize their full potential in school, work and life.

The Kellogg Foundation is based in Battle Creek, Michigan, and works throughout the United States and internationally, as well as with sovereign tribes. Special emphasis is paid to priority places where there are high concentrations of poverty and where children face significant barriers to success. WKKF priority places in the U.S. are in Michigan, Mississippi, New Mexico and New Orleans; and internationally, are in Mexico and Haiti. Visit www.wkkf.org.
Photo: WKKF CEO and President, La June Montgomery Tabron



Justice Department Announces Reforms at Bureau of Prisons to Reduce Recidivism and Promote Inmate Rehabilitation

Posted by Admin On December - 13 - 2016 ADD COMMENTS

The Department of Justice announced a series of reforms at the Federal Bureau of Prisons (BOP) designed to reduce recidivism and increase the likelihood of inmates’ safe and successful return to the community.  These efforts include building a semi-autonomous school district within the federal prison system, reforming federal halfway houses, covering the cost of obtaining state-issued photo IDs for federal inmates prior to their release from custody and providing additional services for female inmates.

“Helping incarcerated individuals prepare for life after prison is not just sound public policy; it is a moral imperative,” said Attorney General Loretta E. Lynch.  “These critical reforms will help give federal inmates the tools and assistance they need to successfully return home as productive, law-abiding members of society.  By putting returning citizens in a position to make the most of their second chance, we can create stronger communities, safer neighborhoods and brighter futures for all.”

“The sweeping changes that we are announcing today chart a new course for the Bureau of Prisons that will help make our prisons more effective, our communities safer and our families stronger,” said Deputy Attorney General Sally Q. Yates.  “One of the best ways to prevent crime is by reducing recidivism, and one of the best ways to reduce recidivism is by equipping inmates with the tools they need to successfully reenter society.”

Last year, with the department’s support, BOP retained outside consultants to review the agency’s operations and recommend changes designed to reduce the likelihood of inmates re-offending after their release from prison.  As part of today’s announcement, the department is launching a new website, www.justice.gov/prison-reform, that compiles current and ongoing reforms at BOP, and includes the final reports from the outside consultants.

The department announced additional details regarding these efforts:

  • Building a school district within the federal prison system.  Research shows that inmates who participate in correctional education programs have 43 percent lower odds of returning to prison than those who do not, and that every dollar spent on prison education saves four to five dollars on the cost of re-incarceration.  BOP is building a semi-autonomous school district within the federal prison system, which will offer programs for literacy, high school diplomas and post-secondary education, along with expanded opportunities for individuals with learning disabilities.  Today, BOP also announced that it has hired Amy Lopez, an experienced educator in the Texas prison school system, to serve as the first superintendent of BOP’s school district.
  • Reforming federal halfway houses.  BOP is overhauling Residential Reentry Centers (RRCs), popularly known as “halfway houses,” which provide housing for approximately 80 percent of inmates during the final months of their federal sentences.  Since the early 1980s, the ownership and operation of RRCs have been fully privatized, with BOP relying on a mix of for-profit companies and non-profit organizations.  Today, Deputy Attorney General Yates issued a memorandum directing BOP to leverage its purchasing power and overhaul this private market.  Among other things, the memorandum directed BOP to establish clear, uniform and improved standards for all RRC providers; expand the collection and publication of RRC performance data; and explore alternative models that would create a more effective and efficient market for federal reentry services.
  • Covering the cost of state-issued IDs prior to inmates’ release.  Possession of government-issued identification documents is critical to successful reentry.  Without such documentation, men and women leaving correctional facilities face significant challenges securing employment and housing, registering for school, opening bank accounts and accessing other benefits, such as health care, that are critical to successful integration.  The department announced today that BOP will begin paying for every federal inmate to obtain a birth certificate and a state-issued identification card before they arrive at RRCs.  An independent consultant estimated that this effort will save the agency approximately $19 million a year, by making it easier for inmates to find a stable job and post-custody housing, which allows BOP to more quickly transfer inmates to less expensive forms of custody such as home confinement.
  • Enhancing programs for female inmates.  Next month, BOP will resume housing female inmates at its facility in Danbury, Connecticut, making it easier for female inmates from the Northeast to remain in contact with their families.  In addition, the Danbury facility will house BOP’s first-ever integrated treatment facility for female inmates, which will feature a mental health unit and a women’s Residential Drug Abuse Program, the agency’s most intensive substance abuse treatment course.

These initiatives are part of the department’s deep commitment to a fair, effective criminal justice system that promotes public safety and prepare inmates for their return to the community, thereby reducing the likelihood that a cycle of crime will continue.

Rep. Cedric Richmond Elected Next Chair of the Congressional Black Caucus

Posted by Admin On December - 13 - 2016 ADD COMMENTS

WASHINGTON, D.C.Representative Cedric Richmond (LA-02) was elected chairman of the Congressional Black Caucus (CBC) for the 115th Congress.

“I commend Representative Cedric Richmond of Louisiana on becoming the new Chairman of the Congressional Black Caucus,” said outgoing CBC Chairman G. K. Butterfield. “We have much work ahead of us during the 115th Congress and I am confident Rep. Richmond will provide strong leadership on the issues we champion to ensure all Americans have an equal and equitable opportunity to achieve the American Dream.”

Also elected in leadership elections were: Andre’ Carson (IN-07), 1st Vice Chair; Karen Bass (CA-37), 2nd Vice Chair; Brenda Lawrence (MI-14), Secretary; and Gwen Moore (WI-04), Whip.

The new CBC executive board will officially take their offices when the 115th Congress opens on January 3, 2017.

Former Attorney General Janet Reno was “Undoubtedly Aware of her Historic Role”: Attorney General Loretta E. Lynch

Posted by Admin On December - 13 - 2016 ADD COMMENTS

United States


Attorney General Loretta E. Lynch Delivers Remarks at Memorial Service for Former Attorney General Janet Reno:

Good morning, everyone. To President [Bill] Clinton; Sandy D’Alemberte; distinguished guests; and most importantly Maggy [Reno Hurchalla], Hunter [Reno] and all of Ms. Reno’s family: I bring you greetings and remembrances from her Department of Justice family.

Early in her career, someone famously told Janet Reno that “ladies don’t become lawyers.” This being free advice, she took it for exactly what it was worth. And I am so grateful – as is our nation – that she did. Further, it is absolutely fitting that history books will pay no notice to whoever uttered that pithy absurdity, but they will certainly pay tribute to Janet Reno. In so many ways – as the first woman to serve as Attorney General in American history; as our nation’s chief law enforcement officer in a tumultuous and eventful time; and as a straight-talking, no-nonsense public servant of the highest integrity – Ms. Reno was a historic figure. She broke barriers and defied expectations. The Department of Justice she left was one that was stronger, wiser, and more compassionate than the one she had inherited.

Janet Reno was undoubtedly aware of her historic role. But she never let her place in history – or anyone for that matter – define her. The weight of her responsibilities never got in the way of her fundamental kindness, a fact that so many department employees still recall. And in a life filled with achievement, one of her proudest was that she cared for her mother as she was dying of cancer, and ensured that her final days were spent in comfort, peace and love. Because she always knew that what really mattered in this life were the connections we have with one another. That acknowledgement of those connections – the blessed ties that bind all of us, as caretaker of our loved ones, as stewards of this land and of the law, as Americans – was at the core of her strength.

When I was thinking of my remarks for today – in the five-minute time frame Maggy so generously gave me – I thought about focusing on the meetings I had with Ms. Reno around her conference room table, now mine. I thought about focusing on the many consequential matters I saw her consider with wisdom and grace. But what kept coming to my mind and to my heart were the first time I met her and the last time I saw her.

When Janet Reno became Attorney General, I was a young federal prosecutor in Brooklyn. A few years into a job that I loved, I must confess that to me and so many of my colleagues, especially the women, Main Justice was a somewhat mysterious place down I-95 populated mostly by dark-suited men whose main distinguishing characteristic seemed to be whether they were grey or whether they were balding. When Janet Reno came onto the scene – a woman, a Southerner, an original who famously “didn’t do spin” – we were electrified. I was inspired by her. I wanted to be like her. Despite my best efforts, I was not able to achieve 6’2”.  I had to settle for being Attorney General instead. It has not been a bad trade.

I first met Janet Reno at the National Black Prosecutors Conference, being held in Washington in her first year in office. She spoke to us about the importance of having prosecutors who based their decisions on what was best for the country, not what was best for their careers. She told us never to forget the many experiences and backgrounds that had brought us there, because that would be our strength as prosecutors. After her talk, she was swarmed with well-wishers. We wanted to shake her hand, to take a photo, to just be near her. And she stayed and spoke with every person who wanted her attention. She posed for pictures, and she asked each of us, thoughtfully and seriously, about ourselves. Maya Angelou once said that “people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” Even today, no one in that room has forgotten how Ms. Reno made us feel – she made us feel valued, she made us feel heard, she made us feel that we could do anything.

That was one of her great gifts. She was one of the best listeners you’ll ever meet. The last time I saw her was earlier this year, in the house her mother had built. She was dealing with difficult health challenges, but she didn’t want to discuss her own health or make idle chitchat. She wanted to hear about the Department of Justice. She wanted to hear about our work in civil rights and in community policing. She wanted to hear about the tough decisions before our department – the kind of tough decisions she had faced every day. And as I spoke, she listened – with that same patient, intent gaze I remembered from so many years ago. And because it was a good day for her, we were able to speak together as well. And as she had so many years ago, she made me feel that I could do anything.

I know that all of us here today have similar stories of how she inspired us in ways large and small. We’re here to honor and remember her. And both the lesson and the challenge she has left for all of us is to decide – how will our actions make others feel? So, as we leave here today with our hearts still full, let us do so with a mission. A mission to carry Janet Reno’s legacy with us, and make the people in our lives feel valued, feel heard, and feel that they, too, can do anything.

ISBE Releases Second Reader’s Guide and New Online Engagement Forum to Accompany Draft ESSA State Plan

Posted by Admin On December - 13 - 2016 ADD COMMENTS

SPRINGFIELD, IL — The Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) advanced an important and  continuing dialogue with communities throughout the state on the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) by releasing the second Reader’s Guide for Illinois’ draft ESSA State Plan and launching a new online engagement forum, developed in partnership with the nonprofit policy support network Partners for Each and Every Child (Partners for).

P4_graylogo_reg_6.14.16ISBE will submit the next draft of the Illinois ESSA State Plan to Governor Bruce Rauner’s office Feb. 1 and then to the U.S. Department of Education April 3. ISBE will gather public input on the draft ESSA State Plan through Dec. 27.

“Now is the time to unlock the unique potential of our diverse state,” said State Superintendent of Education Tony Smith, Ph.D. “We have strong school-community partnerships and experienced educators who can come together to create and implement a state plan that improves outcomes for all students and benefits our entire country. Feedback is essential as ISBE staff and stakeholders seize this opportunity to work together in charting our collective path forward.”

Illinois’ ESSA State Plan is intended to meet the requirements ESSA, the new federal education law. ISBE developed the draft ESSA State Plan based on stakeholder feedback received at three statewide listening tours and hundreds of comments submitted online. The evolving document refines an accountability framework that fulfills the educational equity and excellence goals for all students in Illinois.

A NEW READERS GUIDE: The second draft of Illinois’ ESSA State Plan builds on feedback received on the previous draft of the plan. ISBE produced a Reader’s Guide in partnership with Partners for to assist all stakeholders in understanding the plan. The Reader’s Guide accompanies the draft Illinois ESSA State Plan to showcase:

●     Changes from Draft Plan #1 and how community feedback has been incorporated;

●     Important statutory provisions of ESSA;

     How ISBE’s thinking has evolved, based on stakeholder input;

●     Questions that still remain to be addressed; and

     Resources to further explore remaining issues and key decision points.

A NEW ONLINE ENGAGEMENT PLATFORM: EngageforSchools.org is an online platform facilitating engagement in the education policymaking process. Launched in partnership with Partners for Each and Every Child, EngageforSchools.org focuses on Illinois ESSA planning and implementation. ISBE encourages all stakeholders to download the ESSA State Plan Reader’s Guide to maximize utility of the platform.

ONGOING INPUT: Regularly updated information regarding ESSA can be found at www.isbe.net/essa. Stakeholders are encouraged to provide feedback on the draft plan by emailing essa@isbe.net through Dec. 27.

Speaking about the need for thoughtful collaboration in a time of significant uncertainty, Superintendent Smith said, “We are focused on leveraging the immediate challenge to advance educational equity for students. In Illinois, we are taking full advantage of the opportunities which ESSA allows and requires. It is up to all of us now – liberals and conservatives, families and educators, community organizers and labor representatives – to forge a new consensus on successful schools for each and every child. ISBE is committed to getting the tools and resources to do so into the hands of our communities.”

Christopher Edley Jr., chair of Partners for Each and Every Child and founder/president of the Opportunity Institute, added, “States must lead the way on equity in education, especially considering it is unclear how strong a role the U.S. Department of Education will play in overseeing ESSA implementation. Partners for applauds ISBE’s efforts to regularly, thoughtfully, and deliberately engage with a diverse base of stakeholders in the development of a better, stronger, and more collaborative state educational accountability system.”

Partners for Each and Every Child is a project of The Opportunity Institute. Its mission is to build an infrastructure of interconnected work that will encourage a growing portion of the education policy community to break down barriers to advance sound educational policies; to address matters of equity; and to respond to the needs of at-risk, underserved, and politically underrepresented students.

Fulcrum Point Peace Concert With Malcolm London and Stella Binion, December 18th, 4-6 P.M.

Posted by Admin On December - 13 - 2016 ADD COMMENTS

Holiday Peace Concert a highlight of the season

Global Voices Series finale
a community gathering to cap off HotHouse’s first season
To come together as one and celebrate

Tent City Set to Bloom as Uptown Homeless Shelter Threatens Closure

Posted by Admin On December - 13 - 2016 ADD COMMENTS

City & State have failed to come up with funding to stop closure of shelter near Lake Shore Drive viaducts “tent city”



A Press conference will be held today concerning the impending closure of a North Side Housing & Supportive Services (NSHSS) shelter just before Christmas. Tent City to bloom just outside the shelter, illustrating the “alternative” that city and state politicians’ failures to act have led to. Activists are demanding one-to-one replacement for any NSHSS shelter beds lost.


The press conference will be held Tuesday, December 13, 2016, at 941 W. Lawrence Avenue, Chicago, at 10 A.M. Those in attendance will be Homeless residents of Uptown, clergy, and representatives of Uptown Tent City Organizers and North Side Action For Justice.


The two-year-long state budget impasse between Governor Rauner and House Speaker Madigan has meant that the state has failed to come up with the $100,000 that NSHSS says it needs to keep the 72-bed shelter at 941 W. Lawrence open for the year 2017.


During a protest at his office on October 3rd, 46th Ward Alderman James Cappleman pointedly refused to introduce an ordinance into the City Council to make up the $100k gap, a drop in the bucket compared to far more frivolous measures that he and his ally, Mayor Rahm Emanuel, routinely fund.


Activists accuse Cappleman of using the state budget impasse as a cynical maneuver to further gentrify the ward by pushing homeless people out of the neighborhood through budgets cuts and city workers’ harassment of the homeless.


Lisa Morrison Butler, Commissioner of the Department of Family & Support Services, bears direct responsibility for refusing to stop the harassment of the homeless which is conducted under the guise of wasteful, frequent “cleanings” of the viaducts. As with so many appointments by Mayor Emanuel, Butler is totally lacking in qualifications for the job she was given (and has frequently admitted her ignorance), having a background primarily in public relations.


The closure of the North Side Housing & Supportive Services shelter would compound an already dangerous situation for the city’s homeless. On any given night, the viaducts underneath Lake Shore Drive in Uptown are currently filled to the brim with homeless forced to live there in tents. Closure of the NSHSS shelter will mean yet more tents in more public areas of the ward and city, and a greatly increased threat of disability and death for our neighbors who are homeless.



Clifford Law Offices Obtains $18.5 Million Settlement in Derailment Fire for Two Workers

Posted by Admin On December - 13 - 2016 ADD COMMENTS

Robert A. Clifford and Colin H. Dunn, partners at Clifford Law Offices, obtained an $18.5 million settlement on behalf of two workers who were severely injured in a flash fire during a derailment cleanup in Kentucky. The case was dismissed today (December 12, 2016) in the Circuit Court of Jefferson County in Louisville, Kentucky.


Belleville, Illinois residents Tony Carillo, 38, and Greg Powers, 28, both employees of RJ Corman Derailment Services of Nicholasville, Kentucky, were badly injured in a Level 3 haz-mat derailment cleanup near West Point, Kentucky, in October, 2012.

Powers suffered second and third degree burns over 70 percent of his body as well as inhalation injuries to his throat and lungs. His month-long hospital stay required multiple debridement and skin grafting procedures. He has developed bilateral carpel tunnel syndrome in both arms requiring surgery and endured extensive and painful physical therapy since the incident.

Carillo suffered first and third degree burns over 40 percent of his body including on both arms, his torso and back. He was airlifted to the University of Louisville Hospital where he underwent multiple debridements and skin grafts.


“This incident was completely avoidable had the companies involved taken reasonable precautions,” Clifford said following the settlement. “These men and their families are changed forever.  Burns are very serious injuries – both painful and disfiguring.”
Clifford Law Offices brought claims against CSX Transportation, Inc.; Paducah & Louisville Railway Co.; and the Center for Toxicology and Environmental Health, all of whom contributed to the settlement. Tad Thomas of Thomas Law Offices in Louisville, Kentucky, and Brad Badgley of Brad L. Badgley P.C. in Belleville, Illinois, also represented the two injured workers.

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Welcome to CopyLine Magazine! The first issue of CopyLine Magazine was published in November, 1990, by Editor & Publisher Juanita Bratcher. CopyLine’s main focus is on the political arena – to inform our readers and analyze many of the pressing issues of the day - controversial or otherwise. Our objectives are clear – to keep you abreast of political happenings and maneuvering in the political arena, by reporting and providing provocative commentaries on various issues. For more about CopyLine Magazine, CopyLine Blog, and CopyLine Television/Video, please visit juanitabratcher.com, copylinemagazine.com, and oneononetelevision.com. Bratcher has been a News/Reporter, Author, Publisher, and Journalist for 33 years. She is the author of six books, including “Harold: The Making of a Big City Mayor” (Harold Washington), Chicago’s first African-American mayor; and “Beyond the Boardroom: Empowering a New Generation of Leaders,” about John Herman Stroger, Jr., the first African-American elected President of the Cook County Board. Bratcher is also a Poet/Songwriter, with 17 records – produced by HillTop Records of Hollywood, California. Juanita Bratcher Publisher

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