Tuesday, May 11, 2021
AG and Senate Candidate Kamala Harris Meets with California Black Publishers and Media    
By  Danny J. Bakewell Jr., Executive Editor 
Published August 31, 2016
(LA Sentinel/ Mesiah)

L-R (Back Row): Larry Lee, Danny Bakewell, Jr., David Miller and James Luckey. (Front Row): Clifton Harris, Karen Slade, Brian Townsend, Peggy Hunt, Chida Warren, Amelia Ward, Kamala Harris, Danny Bakewell, Sr., Lisa Collins, Joe Hopkins, Ron Turner and Mark Kimber. (Photo by E. Mesiyah McGinnis)

On Thursday August 25, California Attorney General and US Senate Candidate Kamala Harris met with African American Publishers from across the State of California as well as with African American owned radio station KJLH (Stevie Wonder) to discuss the importance of the African American Vote in November’s election as well as challenges that Black media in California and across the nation are facing, getting fair and equitable access to advertising dollars.

The attorney general highlighted the fact that many African Americans are currently feeling unmotivated or disenfranchised in this election but that the African American vote and African American voter participation is and has always played a major role in getting any candidate elected.  She also pointed out that when African Americans were inspired to vote for President Barack Obama in 2008 they turned en masse, at 68%, however in the 2010 non-presidential election, the numbers dipped to 44%.  She then pointed out that in 2012 in looking to re-affirm President Obama, African Americans again showed with a 72% voter turnout only to be followed up in 2014 with a lowly 35% turnout.

“When African Americans show up and vote, we absolutely make a difference but when we don’t show up, all of the gains we have made over the years are put into jeopardy,” said Harris.


The leading U.S. Senate candidate was also asked about her position in the polls and if she was confident that she would win in November.

(LA Sentinel/ Mesiah)

(Photo by E. Mesiyah McGinnis)

“I learned a long time ago, that as a candidate, you can never get comfortable and that you have to run and continue running as if you are behind,” she said.

“I have always and will continue to put my faith in God, not in polls, so me and my campaign will continue working and fighting to put the issues of this campaign before the people with the hope that we will be victorious in November”.

Sr. Executive Publisher and Chairman of Bakewell Media Danny J. Bakewell, Sr. who convened the meeting along with Ameilia Ward, executive publisher of the Sun Reporter in Northern California called the group together.

“Kamala Harris is a friend, not only to me but she is and continues to be a friend and supporter of Black Media throughout the state and the nation,” Bakewell said.

“We need to rally behind her and her campaign to insure victory in the upcoming election and make history by electing Kamala Harris as the first African American U.S. Senator in California history.”

(LA Sentinel/ Mesiah)

(Photo by E. Mesiyah McGinnis)

Other African American Publishers and Media who were in attendance included Karen Slade and Ron Turner of KJLH Radio, Peggy Hunt Tri County Sentry (Oxnard-Simi Valley), David Miller Our Weekly (Los Angeles-Palmdale), Mark Kimber California Advocate (Fresno), Joe Hopkins Esq. Pasadena Journal (San Gabriel Valley), Lisa Collins LA Focus (Los Angeles), Larry Lee Sacramento Observer (Sacramento), Chida Warren San Diego Voice and Viewpoint (San Diego), Clifton Harris San Bernardino American News (San Bernardino), Brian Townsend Precinct Reporter (San Bernardino), Regina Wilson Black Voice News (Riverside).

“This was a historic gathering of Black Publishers from all over the state,” Ward stated.


“It takes a dynamic leader like my friend Kamala Harris to pull together such a powerful group and I am honored to have been asked along with my friend Danny Bakewell, Sr. to bring all of these publishers together to help our friend push to the finish line and win this historic election.”

All of the members of the Black Media have vowed to get the word out and inform the millions of readers and listeners of the importance of voting.  KJLH has launched a social media campaign #myvotematterskjlh which the Sentinel and other papers and local organizations have vowed to join and support.

“This is a very important election.  While we have all enjoyed 8 wonderful years under our President Barack Obama, we must remember that if we do not show up and make our voices heard, all of his accomplishments will be undermined by those who do not wish for him to go down in history as one of (if not) the greatest presidents in U.S. History.  The Sentinel and the L.A. Watts Times, all of our social media teams and the Taste of Soul Nation will all be working hard to insure we show up and make our votes count,” said Bakewell Sr.

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