To vote is not just a right, but also a privilege and in the African American community it is our responsibility to exercise our fundamental rights and make sure that our voices are heard.
Since the Voting Rights Act was established in 1965 prohibiting any state or local government from imposing any voting law that results in discrimination against racial or language minorities, Black have been responsible for the historical election of our first Black President in Barack Obama.
However, our local election is even more significant and on June 3rd is yet another that will determine and outline a future course for who is going to become our elected officials.
The most important of these elections in the Los Angeles Unified School District Board—District 1 where we strongly support George McKenna.
After carefully evaluating all of the candidates in these respective races, The Sentinel has determined which candidates serve the Black community needs the best.
Additionally, the Act specifically outlaws literacy tests and similar devices that were historically used to disfranchise racial minorities.
GEORGE MCKENNA LAUSD DISTRICT 1 –SCHOOL BOARD
The candidates Los Angeles Unified School Board include a wide range of hopefuls, but none come with the overwhelming credentials as George McKenna.
McKenna earned his national and global reputation that inspired a movie about him by performing miracles in the educational sector for decades.
He transformed Washington Prep from a tragic high truancy rate into a model campus by collectively bringing, parents, teachers and students together for one common goal.
McKenna was comfortable in retirement until his late friend Marguerite Poindexter LaMotte abruptly succumbed last December. He not only felt it necessary to fill her seat, but responsible to the many parents and students in District 1 whom he is very well acquainted with. The Sentinel highly recommends that you vote for George McKenna.
EDMUND G. “JERRY” BROWN – GOVERNOR
Governor Brown was elected for his third gubernatorial term in 2010. Since taking office he has dramatically cut the state budget deficit, improved California’s credit ratings and cut waste and inefficiencies throughout government. Governor Brown also enacted historic public safety realignment, raised the state’s clean energy goal to 33 percent and is seeking the public’s support for new revenues to protect education and public safety funds. He has consistently delivered on all of his campaign commitments to the Black community and that’s why the Sentinel is endorsing his re-election bid.
GAVIN NEWSOM – LT. GOVERNOR
In 1996, Newsom was appointed by San Francisco Mayor Willie Brown to the City’s Parking and Traffic Commission. Soon, he was elected President of the Commission. In 1997, Brown appointed him to the City’s Board of Supervisors. Voters elected Newsom to the Board in 1998 and re-elected him in 2000 and 2002. Since then he has steadfastly become a political star. The Sentinel is well familiar with his relationships with the Black community and we support his bid for Lt. Governor.
KAMALA HARRIS – ATTORNEY GENERAL
On January 3, 2011, Kamala D. Harris was sworn in as the 32nd Attorney General of the State of California. She is the first woman, the first African American, and the first South Asian to hold the office in the history of California.
As chief law enforcement officer for the state, Attorney General Harris has focused on combating transnational gangs that are trafficking guns, drugs, and human beings throughout California. She has worked to increase the adoption of technology and data-driven policing to assist law enforcement in the efficient investigation and prosecution of crime, and has traveled to every region of California to expand partnerships with local law enforcement. She has also fought to preserve California’s natural resources, ensure marriage equality for all Californians, and defend the Affordable Care Act.
Attorney General Harris is author of the book Smart on Crime: A Career Prosecutor’s Plan to Make Us Safer. The Sentinel endorsed her historical campaign and supports her candidacy again.
JOHN CHIANG - TREASURER
He was re-elected to a second term in November 2010. Upon taking office, he took immediate action to weed out waste, fraud and abuse of public funds and make the State's finances more transparent and accountable to the public. He has proposed reforms to the State's public pension systems, helped local governments navigate complex requirements during difficult economic times, protected California's precious natural resources, ensured that more than $2.9 billion in unclaimed property was returned to the rightful owners, and launched California Strong financial and tax assistance seminars for families, seniors, small businesses and non-profit organizations. The Sentinel urges your support of John Chiang.
KAREN BASS – CONGRESSIONAL DISTRICT 37
She was selected by Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi to serve on the prestigious Steering and Policy Committee, which sets the policy direction of the Democratic Caucus. Congressmember Bass is also playing a leadership role in the Congressional Black Caucus (CBC), where she serves as Whip for the 113th Congress.
Only in her second term, Congressmember Bass is solidifying leadership positions on two issues very close to her heart: reforming America’s foster care system and strengthening the United States’ relationship with Africa. The Sentinel is honored to endorse Karen Bass for Congress.
MAXINE WATERS – CONGRESSIONAL DISTRICT 43
Congresswoman Maxine Waters is considered by many to be one of the most powerful women in American politics today. She has gained a reputation as a fearless and outspoken advocate for women, children, people of color and the poor.
Elected in November 2012 to her twelfth term in the House of Representatives with more than 70 percent of the vote in the 43rd Congressional District of California, Congresswoman Waters represents a large part of South Central Los Angeles including the communities of Westchester, Playa Del Rey, and Watts and the unincorporated areas of Los Angeles County comprised of Lennox, West Athens, West Carson, Harbor Gateway and El Camino Village. The 43rd District also includes the diverse cities of Gardena, Hawthorne, Inglewood, Lawndale, Lomita and Torrance.
Congresswoman Waters serves as the Ranking Member of the House Committee on Financial Services. An integral member of Congressional Democratic Leadership, Congresswoman Waters serves as a member of the Steering & Policy Committee. She is also a member of the Congressional Progressive Caucus, and member and past chair of the Congressional Black Caucus. The Sentinel is pleased to have been an ardent supporter of Rep. Waters during her pioneering political career.
HOLLY MITCHELL – SENATE DISTRICT 26
Senator Holly J. Mitchell was elected in 2013 to represent the 26th District in the State Senate, which includes Culver City and parts of the City and County of Los Angeles, including the communities of Beverlywood, Century City, Cheviot Hills, the Crenshaw District, Hancock Park, Hollywood, Koreatown, Ladera Heights, Larchmont, Los Feliz, Mid-Wilshire, Silver Lake, South Los Angeles, and West Los Angeles.
Mitchell previously represented the 54th Assembly District in Los Angeles, which includes UCLA/Westwood, Mar Vista, Rancho Park, and parts of West Los Angeles. She chaired the Assembly's Budget Sub-committee #1 on Health & Human Services and the Select Committee on Foster Youth, and was a member of the Committees on Health, Insurance and Public Safety, as well as the Joint Legislative Budget Committee. She chairs California's Legislative Black Caucus (CLBC) and also belongs to the Women's Legislative Caucus.
CHRIS HOLDEN – ASSEMBLY DISTRICT 41
Chris fought for the Pasadena’s first living wage ordinance, and managed deregulation of the city’s public utility in a way that preserved jobs while keeping rates lower than in the private marketplace.
In addition to his accomplishments as a City Councilmember, Chris served as a Commissioner and President of the Burbank-Glendale-Pasadena Airport Authority and on the Pasadena Light Rail Alignment Task Force. The Sentinel is proud to endorse Chris Holden for Assembly
He has been honored for his leadership with the Political Vanguard Award by the California Black Chamber of Commerce and the Rose Award by the Black History Parade. Holden received top grades from the Congress of California Seniors and the League of Conservation Voters in his first year in the Assembly.
CHERYL BROWN – ASSEMBLY DISTRICT 47
Assemblymember Cheryl R. Brown was elected on November 6, 2012 to represent California's 47th Assembly District, which includes San Bernardino, Rialto, Fontana, Colton, Grand Terrace, Bloomington, and Muscoy.
Prior to joining the California State Assembly, Brown worked for the San Bernardino County Planning Department. She later served on the County and City Planning Commissions for 17 years. During her tenure as a commissioner, she was elected president of the California County Planning Commissioners Association. The Sentinel supports her candidacy.
SEBASTIAN RIDLEY-THOMAS – ASSEMBLY DISTRICT 54
Ridley-Thomas is dedicated to finding sensible solutions to the issues facing Los Angeles residents. His commitment to public service was inspired by his mother – Avis Ridley-Thomas, a pioneer in conflict resolution – and his father, Mark Ridley-Thomas, chairman of the L.A. County Board of Supervisors and founder of the community empowerment movement that has become a model for communities nationwide. This young new generational public servant is just what we need and the Sentinel is pleased to endorse him.
REGINALD BYRON JONES-SAWYER – ASSEMBLY DISTRICT 59
His history of public service includes serving as Chair of the LA County Small Business Commission, an Assistant Deputy Mayor for the City of Los Angeles and Vice President of SEIU's (Local 721) Los Angeles Professional Managers Association.
The Jones-Sawyer family were early pioneers in the civil rights movement. His uncle was one of the "Little Rock Nine"--high school students who braved violent mobs to integrate Little Rock Central High School in 1957; one of the most important and documented events in our nation's history. The Sentinel is proud to endorse his reelection bid.
AUTUMN BURKE OR GLORIA GRAY – ASSEMBLY DISTRICT 62
As an entrepreneur and small business owner, Autumn knows that good jobs, safe and affordable housing and quality schools are vital to every community. She will be an active problem solver who will fight for the interests of the people she represents, whether encouraging more businesses to locate and hire locally, improving conditions that can help small businesses succeed, increasing the availability of affordable housing or advancing the needs of local schools. The
Gray was the 1st African-American Woman to serve as Vice Chair of the MWD Board, was the 1st African-American to Chair a Board meeting in the 85-year agency history and serves on the Executive Committee, Communications and Legislative Committee, Water Planning and Stewardship Committee, Organization, Personnel and Technology Committee, and Special Committee on Bay-Delta. In April 2010, former Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger signed into law the creation of the Delta Stewardship Council. Gray was appointed to the Council by Assembly Speaker Emeritus Karen Bass. and is the 1st woman and African American to serve on the council. Sentinel is asking for your support of either candidate.
MIKE GIBSON – ASSEMBLY DISTRICT 64
Mike comes with a solid background in the areas of politics and public safety, owing to his profession as a Union Representative, his training as lead staff person for various elected offices, and a successful career as a former police officer. The current Carson City Councilmember is ready to take the next step as a public servant and the Sentinel is supporting that step.
SONGHAI ARMSTEAD – SUPERIOR COURT JUDGE OFFICE 97
Songhai Armstead is a candidate for Los Angeles County Superior Court Judge.
In over a decade of service as a prosecutor with the Los Angeles City Attorney’s Office, she has been gained a wide range of experience working in the Environmental, Central Trials, and the Neighborhood Prosecutor Program sections of the office. Armstead aggressively prosecuted everything from petty theft to violent crimes and worked hard to address the many quality of life concerns plaguing our community. She has headed multiple operations and tackled everything from anti-piracy and counterfeit to the reduction of crime, urban blight and decay along Skid Row in downtown Los Angeles. It’s about time that the Black community have a judge for US and the Sentinel believes that Songhi Armstead is that Judge.
BETTY YEE - STATE CONTROLLER
Yee is running for State Controller because she believes strong financial leadership is critical to California’s fiscal health. It is essential to the responsiveness and effectiveness of government in delivering for the people of California.
She brings 30 years of public service experience, specializing in state and local finance and tax policy. I have earned the respect as a problem-solver of complex policy issues and have an established record of toughness, fairness, and integrity.
Californians deserve and expect their government to be committed to the highest standards of transparency and accountability. I uphold these standards, understanding that the public’s trust and confidence of their government is paramount. Yee is the Sentinel’s endorsed candidate for State Controller.
JIM MCDONNELL-LOS ANGELES COUNTY SHERIFF
Appointed 25th Chief of Police for the Long Beach Police Department (LBPD), the 2nd largest city in Los Angeles County, in March 2010.
McDonnell served with the Los Angeles Police Department for 29 years and held every rank in the department up to Chief of Staff, second-in-command of the LAPD. He has received numerous community and department awards, including the LAPD's highest award for bravery, the Medal of Valor.
Chief McDonnell serves on numerous Boards of Directors that focus on furthering the interests of local youth and leadership in the policing profession on a local, statewide and national level. He serves as a Commissioner of the California Commission on Peace Officers' Standards & Training (POST) and is the immediate past president of the Los Angeles County Police Chiefs' Association. We believe that his experience in law enforcement, coupled with his long tenured relationships in Los Angeles County will make him a great Sheriff. The Sentinel endorses his candidacy.