Barbara Perkins of the International Black Women’s Public Policy Forum and Media Mogul Cathy Hughes at the Haiti Embassy reception (Photo by Niele Anderson)

This year’s conference uplifted women, millennials and Los Angeles made its mark.

 The Congressional Black Caucus Foundation, Inc. (CBCF) recently held its 48thConference in Washington D.C. For the first time in the foundation’s history, two senators — Senator Cory Booker (New Jersey) and Senator Kamala D. Harris (California) served as honorary co-chairs for the 48th Annual Legislative Conference (ALC). Historically, co-chairs have been members of the U.S. House of Representatives.

The premier conference, which takes place at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center in Washington, D.C., attracted nearly 10,000 people from around the world and is the only event of its kind in the United States. The conference offered more than 90 forums on public policy issues affecting Black Americans.

This year California Rep. Karen Bass announced exclusively with the Sentinel that she is running for Caucus chair. She gave us the announcement live on Facebook.  Rep. Maxine Waters held her annual “Young, Gifted and Black” panel with hip-hop artist Common and the room could be heard chanting, “Auntie Max.”

Los Angeles African American Women’s Public Policy Institute (LAAWPPI) and Los Angeles African American Women Political Action Committee (LAAAWPAC) joined forces this year and held its first panel at this year’s convention. Presenters included: Celestine Palmer, founder of both organizations, Ingrid Palmer, Joy Adkinson, Patrice Marshall, Tammy Tumbling, Barbara Young Ph.D. and was moderated by Jacquelynn Hawthorne. The presentation encouraged the audience to be civically engaged and provided tools on how to advocate on issues and support candidates.

Senator Cory Booker and Rev. Jesse Jackson (Photo by Niele Anderson)

LAAWPPI alumni Barbara Perkins who started the International Black Women’s Public Policy Forum held her 10thAnnual Policy forum, which focused around leadership in a global Black women’s movement.  Perkins kicked off CBC week with a reception at the Haiti Embassy where she honored media mogul Cathy Hughes.

Other highlights included the Black Millennium Political Convention who held activities for the first time around the D.C. area. The group members include some of the youngest African American elected and appointed officials in the nation.

During the five-day conference, attendees had the opportunity to delve into important conversations with industry leaders from across the globe on public health, gender equality, social mobility, LGBTQ rights and environmental sustainability, among many other topics. Other popular panels included “Trump Impeachment” and “The Negative Effects of Attorney General Jeff Sessions.”

“The Annual Legislative Conference, over nearly five decades, has brought together some of the country’s greatest leaders, innovators, and job creators to address the most pressing issues facing Black America,” said Senator Kamala D. Harris. “This year is no exception. I look forward to confronting these issues head on, and working to create solutions that will lead to lasting change.”

The ALC is the leading policy conference on issues impacting African Americans and the global Black community. Lawmakers, celebrities and concerned citizens attend the conference to partake in a plethora of forums on health, education, economic empowerment, the environment, civic engagement and more. The ALC is the largest platform in which the CBCF delivers against its mission to eliminate the disparities in the global Black community.

Dr. Wes Bellamy is the youngest person to ever be elected to the Charlottesville City, Lea Webb founding member of The Black Millennial Convention, Sentinel Communications Specialist Niele Anderson and Jewell Jones the youngest elected state house representative in Michigan history (Photo by Niele Anderson)