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Michelle Obama is heading to Philly with Kelly Rowland and Nick Cannon
Michelle Obama is heading to Philly with Kelly Rowland and Nick Cannon
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April 11, 2018
Cory Booker Hits Pharma and FB, Norma Torres Joins Rules Committee, and RLJ Names New CEO
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After months of rumors, House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI) confirmed to confidants that he will not seek re-election. The First Congressional District of Wisconsin just got a lot more competitive. What does this mean for Ryan’s chief opponent Randy “the Iron Stache” Bryce? He may have just gotten one step closer to Congress. What does this mean for the GOP leadership ranks? Congressman Steve Scalise (R-LA) and Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) will likely face off in a race to the top spot. They can discuss this evening when the Republican leaders dine with Donald Trump at the White House. While tonight has been planned for several days, it just got a lot more awkward.  This will not only offer lawmakers a chance to recap the latest leadership shake-up, but it’s also an opportunity for them to discuss Trump’s plans for Deputy AG Rod Rosenstein, who is arguably in more danger of being fired than Special Counsel Robert Mueller or AG Jeff Sessions. Trump has at least one ally on ousting the officials. House Intelligence Committee Chairman Devin Nunes (R-CA) threatened to "impeach" FBI Director Christopher Wray and Rosenstein unless they turn over the document that led to the launch of the FBI probe into Russian contacts with the Trump campaign. Let’s assume Syria will be on the agenda this evening as well. This morning, Trump issued a warning to Russia and, in a series of tweets, said that missiles “will be coming.” A Russian diplomat earlier said American military assets would be targeted in the event of missiles being fired at Syria. With the influx of challenges, is POTUS45 considering stepping down from the Oval Office? That’s the question reporter April Ryan posed to WH Press Sec Sarah Huckabee Sanders during Tuesday’s press briefing. A visibly annoyed Sanders replied, “no and that’s an absolutely ridiculous question.” And yesterday, the Notorious RBG became the first Supreme Court justice to officiate a NY naturalization ceremony in recent years. Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg told the new citizens that the U.S. is “a nation made strong by people like you.” Okay, let’s tackle the day like we’re Andre Ingram at the 3-point line fresh off a cup of coffee. We’re kicking off Wednesday with this...
  • Senators of color press Facebook CEO during a joint session of the Senate Commerce and Judiciary Committees.
  • Barack and Michelle Obama won’t be at the royal wedding, but you can catch FLOTUS44 in Philly next month.
  • Will Congressmen Pete Aguilar (D-CA) and Jeff Denham (R-CA) force the House to vote on immigration? They’re close.
  • Senator Cory Booker (D-NJ) hits big pharma for not passing tax bill savings to consumers.
  • Dems push House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI) to personally intervene in Russia election hacking investigation.
  • RightNOW brings on Latina GOP operative as its new Executive Director.
  • DOJ halts program that offers legal assistance to detained immigrants in deportation proceedings.
  • ProPublica releases its diversity numbers.
  • Meet the new staff at HuffPost.
  • Univisión and TED launch TED en Español.
  • CNBC has a new face on the banks beat.
  • José Díaz-Balart and Georgetown launch new fund to help unpaid interns.
  • Thurgood Marshall College Fund sees the fruits of their labor with the Trump admin.
  • Former AG Loretta Lynch sat with WaPo's Jonathan Capehart for a talk on attorney-client privilege (hint: not dead) and more. Check it out in Blogs!
Congresswoman Stephanie Murphy (D-FL) on Thursday with constituents during a "Coffee with Your Congresswoman" event.
The Daily Show's Roy Wood Jr. on Monday promoting his upcoming comedy show in Boston, MA.
Tri-Caucus Senators Press Facebook CEO
Senator Kamala Harris (D-CA)
spent her portion of yesterday’s questioning of Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg on how the decision was made in 2015 to not inform the 87 million users that their data had been improperly sold off. “You, meaning Facebook, and I’m going to assume you personally as CEO, became aware in December of 2015 that Dr. Kogan and Cambridge Analytica misappropriated data from 87 million Facebook users. That’s 27 months ago,” she said. “However, a decision was made not to notify the users. So my question is did anyone at Facebook have a conversation, at the time that you became aware of this breach, have a conversation wherein the decision was made not to contact the users?” After some back and forth, Zuckerberg conceded to the former prosecutor that a decision had indeed been made not to inform users of the breach. Senator Catherine Cortez Masto (D-NV) focused on what control individual users have over their data and user privacy, and how Facebook failed to address the issue of protecting user data after a 2011 Federal Trade Commission consent decree. Zuckerberg assured her of a robust privacy program, but Cortez Masto pressed him on specifics. “Had you done an audit, had you looked at the third-party applications and their associated data storage as well, you would have known that this type of data information was being shared,” she said. Senator Mazie Hirono (D-HI) asked Zuckerberg if his company would ever assist Trump administration officials in identifying undocumented immigrants. He said they would not. Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX) pressed Zuckerberg on Facebook having a political bias. Zuckerberg conceded that Silicon Valley is “an extremely left-leaning place,” but denied Cruz’s insinuation that the bias had infiltrated the machinations of Facebook. Senator Cory Booker (D-NJ) used his time to press Zuckerberg on "a growing sense of distrust" among members of the civil rights community because of the lack of diversity in the technology industry. The concern is that the people overseeing these posts are not going to be members of the communities most hurt by them. Zuckerberg responded positively to Booker's suggestion that members of civil rights groups be allowed to audit the companies posting such ads to ensure they do not discriminate. Zuckerberg also agreed with Booker's concern about law enforcement officials using Facebook to monitor civil rights organizations, such as Black Lives Matter. Today, the 33-year-old CEO will face the House Energy and Commerce Committee which is comprised of the following Tri-Caucus members on the Dem side: Bobby Rush (D-IL), GK Butterfield (D-NC), Doris Matsui (D-CA), Ben Ray Luján (D-NM), Yvette Clarke (D-NY), Tony Cárdenas (D-CA), and Raúl Ruiz (D-CA). On the GOP side, Zuckerberg will face Congressmen Bill Flores (R-TX) and Markwayne Mullin (R-OK)More here.
Sheila Jackson Lee Pushes to Renew Violence Against Women Act
Congresswoman Sheila Jackson Lee (D-TX)
announced Monday that she would push for reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act, which seeks to protect women, educate communities and enhance the tools that law enforcement can utilize to safeguard against the violence, abuse, and sexual harassment of women. The bill was last renewed in 2013, after a long battle over extending the law's protections to same-sex couples. According to the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence, one in four women will be the victim of severe domestic violence; one in seven have been stalked by their partner; one in five will be raped; and, almost 20% of domestic violence includes a weapon. "Since its initial enactment a quarter-century ago, this critical law—through policy reforms, interstate cooperation and grant allocation—has been pivotal in providing a national response to protecting half of the population," Jackson Lee's office wrote in a statement. "Equally important, it has ushered in a seismic transformation on how society perceives violence against women. This progress cannot be allowed to stop." More here.
Will This Bipartisan Duo Force Immigration Votes in the House?
Congressman Jeff Denham (R-CA)
reportedly has the votes to force a debate in the House on four immigration bills. Denham told The Hill that he has secured support from more than 40 GOP colleagues for a resolution that would allow debate and votes. The CA Republican said that while his ally across the aisle, Congressman Pete Aguilar (D-CA), is still ushering support from his Democratic colleagues, they expect all 192 Democrats to support the “discharge petition,” which would force a vote without consent from the House leadership. The four bills that would be considered include the bipartisan Dream Act introduced by Congresswomen Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL) and Lucille Roybal-Allard (D-CA); the bipartisan USA Act, offered by Aguilar and Congressman Will Hurd (R-TX); the conservative bill authored by Judiciary Chairman Bob Goodlatte (R-VA); and Speaker Paul Ryan’s (R-WI) proposal that would mirror Donald Trump’s immigration plan. “It’s time for us to have a full debate in front of the American public,” Denham said. Under the rule, whichever measure has the most votes above 218 would be adopted by the House. The Beat DC will keep you posted. More here.
CNN's Ana Navarro at the San Francisco Golden Gate Park on Sunday.
Actor Jussie Smollett, Congresswoman Sheila Jackson Lee (D-TX), and Queer Eye host Kamaro Brown at the HRC Gala in Houston on Saturday.
Cory Booker Hits Big Pharma for Buybacks with GOP Tax Bill Savings in New Report
According to a new 15-page report released earlier this week by Senator Cory Booker (D-NJ), the largest 10 pharmaceutical companies in the nation have announced no plans to pass on any of their newfound tax savings from the Republican tax bill to consumers in the form of lower drug prices. Instead, half of the firms plan to use their windfall to repurchase shares of their own stock, a mechanism used to boost the individual stock price for shareholders. Booker’s staff reviewed transcripts of the fourth quarter earnings calls and other public forecasting statements of the largest 10 U.S.-headquartered pharmaceutical companies -- Pfizer, Merck & Co., Johnson & Johnson, Gilead Sciences, AbbVie, Amgen, Bristol-Myers Squibb, Eli Lilly & Co., Celgene, and Mylan. Their findings revealed no evidence that drug companies are using any of their tax savings to lower the price of prescription drugs. Instead, their analysis revealed that five of the 10 firms have announced $45 billion in new stock buyback programs. “This early snapshot of how drug companies are using their newfound tax savings is profoundly discouraging,” Booker said. “Instead of using the windfall to benefit consumers in the form of lower drug prices, they’re using their savings to line the pockets of wealthy shareholders and executives. That’s unacceptable. Too many Americans have to choose between basic necessities such as taking their medicine and paying their utility bill.  The pharmaceutical industry needs to get its priorities straight and do more for patients struggling with skyrocketing drug prices.” More here.
Ranking Dems Push Paul Ryan to Personally Intervene in Russia Election Hacking Investigation
Congressmen Elijah Cummings (D-MD)
and Bennie Thompson (D-MS), the Ranking Members of the Committees on Oversight and Government Reform and Homeland Security, sent a letter urging House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI) to personally intervene to obtain all documents being withheld by the Trump administration relating to Russian government-backed efforts to monitor, penetrate, or otherwise hack at least 21 state election systems before the 2016 election. “We have been trying to work through the committee process, but we have faced two obstacles:  the Trump Administration is refusing to provide the documents we requested, and Republicans appear to have no interest in compelling the Trump Administration to produce them,” the Ranking Members wrote. “Our goal is to obtain the documents collected and prepared by our federal agencies about these Russian attacks in order to take concrete steps to prevent this from happening again. That is our responsibility under the Constitution.” They were joined in the letter by Congressmen Jerrold Nadler (D-NY), Adam Schiff (D-CA), Robert A. Brady (D-PA), and Eliot Engel (D-NY) -- the top Dems on the Judiciary, Intelligence, House Administration, and Foreign Affairs Committees, respectively. See the full letter here.
Norma Torres Named New Rules Committee Member
Congresswoman Norma Torres (D-CA) has been appointed to the Rules Committee Member by Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA). “Congresswoman Norma Torres is a proven champion of the Inland Empire and of Americans across the nation,” said Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi. “As an immigrant, a former 9-1-1 dispatcher and a union leader, Congresswoman Torres deeply understands the challenges facing American families. Her strong values and strategic expertise, honed through a lifelong dedication of public service, will be invaluable on the Rules Committee.  Democrats look forward to the fresh perspective and firm leadership she will bring to this vital committee, as we fight to advance justice, fairness and progress for all.” A native of Guatemala, Torres represents California's 35th Congressional District and was previously a member of the California State Senate. Congressman Jim McGovern (D-MA) was tapped to serve as the top Democrat on the Committee, replacing the late NY Congresswoman Louise Slaughter.
 More here.
DOJ Halts Legal Aid Program for Immigrants in Detention
The Department of Justice late yesterday announced that U.S. immigration courts will temporarily halt a program that offers legal assistance to detained immigrants in deportation proceedings. WaPo reports that DOJ informed the Vera Institute of Justice that beginning in April, it will pause Vera’s Legal Orientation Program, which last year held information sessions for 53,000 immigrants in more than a dozen states. The Executive Office for Immigration Review, which runs the immigration courts, also told the nonprofit that it will evaluate Vera’s “help desk,” which offers tips to non-detained immigrants facing deportation proceedings in the Chicago, Miami, New York, Los Angeles, and San Antonio courts. “This is a blatant attempt by the administration to strip detained immigrants of even the pretense of due process rights,” said Mary Meg McCarthy, Executive Director of the National Immigrant Justice Center. Read more here.
Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard (D-HI) on Saturday visiting local small business owners.
WaPo's Jonathan Capehart interviewing former AG Loretta Lynch on Tuesday for his podcast.
RLJ Lodging Names New CEO
The real estate investment trust owned by BET Founder Robert Johnson has named Leslie D. Hale as President and CEO. The Howard University grad, who went on to earn her MBA from Harvard, currently serves as EVP, COO, and CFO for RLJ Lodging Trust. She will transition to her new role this August when current CEO Ross H. Bierkan retires. “Leslie has done an incredible job as both COO and CFO. She knows our strategy well, and with her deep involvement in both the operational and financial sides of the business, she is uniquely prepared to succeed Ross and lead the company forward,” Johnson said. “It’s an honor and a privilege to have the opportunity to serve as the next CEO of RLJ Lodging Trust,” said Hale. “Over the last 13 years, we have built an incredible and talented team of individuals with an unparalleled enthusiasm to drive this company forward.” Hale joined RLJ Development LLC, the company’s predecessor, in 2005 as its Director of Real Estate and Finance and was promoted to VP in 2006. In 2007, she was promoted to CFO and SVP and, in 2013, she was promoted to EVP. In 2016, Hale also took on the role of COO, with the added responsibility for management of the company’s operating platform, in addition to overseeing all financial matters. Prior to Hale’s tenure at RLJ, she held several positions of increasing responsibility within General Electric Capital Corporation, including VP in the mergers and acquisitions group of GE Commercial Finance and Associate Director in the strategic capital group of GE Real Estate. Before GE, Hale was an investment banker at Goldman, Sachs & Co. RLJ Trusts is one of the largest publicly-traded lodging Real Estate Investment Trusts in the U.S., with more than $3 billion in assets and 150 hotels operating across the country. More here.
Noodle Partners Names New GM
Alix Dejean
has joined Noodle Partners as their new General Manager. Noodle Partners is one of the newer for-profit companies to help create and advertise new digital degree programs at colleges and universities. They got a boost in December with $14 million in their first round of financing. He was most recently a Principal in the State and Local Affairs and Multicultural Affairs practices at Dewey Square Group. During his more than seven years at Dewey Square, Dejean advised Fortune 500 companies, foundations and emerging companies on strategic communications, stakeholder engagement, crisis management, diversity, reputation, and public affairs matters with a particular focus on education, media, technology and aerospace sectors. Dejean has more than a decade of public and national government affairs experience, as political and fundraising strategist. He began his career working for the Kerry-Edward Presidential Campaign, followed by several years at the DNC and the Obama Victory Fund 2008 in the following roles: Southern Deputy Finance Director, Northern Deputy Finance Director, Finance Director for the African American Leadership Council (AALC), and later, as a consultant with the Dejean Group. The College of the Holy Cross grad is currently studying for a Masters of Theology at Wesley Theological Seminary. More here.
Sunshine Sachs Brings on Account Manager
Kat Maramba
has joined Sunshine Sachs as an Account Manager where she will be doing media relations work for clients. She was most recently a Communications Strategist at Blue Engine Message and Media. Prior to that, she was an Operations Manager at Climate Action Campaign. Some of Sunshine Sachs' clients include the Human Rights Campaign and Facebook, as well as celebrity clients like Lin-Manuel Miranda, Ben Affleck, Leonardo DiCaprio, Jason Statham, Natalie Portman, the Michael Jackson Estate, and Justin Timberlake. The Ohio native graduated from Ohio University and earned her MA in public communications from American University. More about her here.
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Tim Kaine Plucks Former CBC Staff as Campaign Press Sec
Brandon Gassaway has joined Senator Tim Kaine's (D-VA) re-election campaign as Press Secretary. Most recently, Gassaway had been with Conway Strategic, a firm specializing in developing innovative action plans to change policy, shaping opinion research to create message frameworks, and creating research-driven communications and advocacy strategies to improve understanding. Prior to that, the 2010 Pepperdine University graduate was the Communications Director for Congressional Black Caucus Chair Cedric Richmond (D-LA). Before landing on Capitol Hill, the New Orleans native served as the Regional Press Secretary for Hillary Clinton's campaign in Virginia. More about him here.
RightNOW Names Executive Director
RightNOW, a women’s empowerment nonprofit, has named GOP operative Bettina Inclán as their Executive Director. The seasoned communications and political strategist brings over a decade of experience in government, media relations, coalition advocacy and grassroots mobilization. She previously worked for the National Republican Congressional Committee as Director of Strategic Initiatives and Coalitions. In 2010, Bettina served as Deputy Communications Director for Florida Governor Rick Scott. She has held prominent roles with various campaigns and political committees, including the Director for Hispanic Outreach at the RNC, the Mitt Romney Presidential Campaign and is a former aide to Congressman Lincoln Díaz-Balart (R-FL). The Florida native and daughter of a Cuban exile and a Mexican immigrant is also the President and Founder of Mira Mira Strategies, Corp. RightNOW also announced the addition of Neri Martínez and Sabrina Schaeffer to its Board of Directors. “Together with RightNOW’s Board of Directors, I’m especially looking forward to showcasing the diversity of thought within the community of female leaders nationally, and building a strong network to support these women,” Inclán said. RightNOW plans on a major national network expansion for 2018 and beyond designed for connecting, mobilizing, and engaging diverse women across America. More here.
LCLAA Executive Director and National Hispanic Leadership Agenda Chair Hector Sánchez Barba at an #EqualPayDay event yesterday.
Activist and Women's March Co-Chair Tamika D. Mallory with rapper T.I. on Monday at the #MarchForHumanity in Atlanta.
Michelle Obama Heads to Philly
Former First Lady Michelle Obama is heading to Philadelphia next month to celebrate national College Signing Day at Temple University on May 2nd. “I’m so in awe of college-bound students all over the country — you inspire Barack Obama and me every day,” Obama tweeted. “We know how hard you’ve worked to make your college dreams a reality. That’s why #CollegeSigningDay is one of my favorite traditions. I can’t wait to celebrate in Philly!” FLOTUS44 will be joined by Bradley Cooper, Questlove, Robert De Niro, Zendaya, Kelly Rowland, Rebel Wilson, Nick Cannon, and others. Over 8,000 students from public, private, charter and parochial schools will also be on hand. College Signing Day honors all college-bound students, not just athletes, who have committed to attend an institution of higher learning, are joining the military, or entering a trade or certificate program. More here.
Barack and Michelle Obama Will Skip Royal Wedding
Barack
and Michelle Obama will not be attending the wedding of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle. Kensington Palace announced Tuesday that the royal couple would not be inviting political leaders to the event, at least not on the basis of their official position. Not even British Prime Minister Theresa May got an invite. Only personal friends of the couple will be inside Windsor Castle for the royal event on May 19th. A royal source said that while Harry and Meghan hoped to see Barack and Michelle Obama soon, the former POTUS and his wife would not be at the wedding. The source would not say definitively whether the Obamas -- who are close to the royal couple -- had been invited. The ceremony will take place in St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle and has a capacity of just 800. By comparison, Harry's older brother, Prince William, married Kate Middleton at Westminster Abbey in 2011, where around 1,900 people attended the ceremony. More here.
Chef Carla Hall and actress Cicely Tyson at the home of chef Alexander Smalls on Monday in Harlem.
Congresswoman Judy Chu (D-CA) with a furry friend this week celebrating legislation to protect animals. 
CNBC Taps New Face to Cover Banks
Hugh Son 
has joined CNBC.com to cover the banking sector with a focus on JP Morgan, Goldman Sachs, and other top financial institutions. He most recently covered finance at Bloomberg where he has worked as a Reporter for the past 11 years. It was here that Son broke much of what the public knows about the U.S. bailout of AIG -- from multimillion-dollar bonuses to the New York Fed’s actions to prop up AIG’s counterparties. He later covered Bank of America. More recently, he has been exploring the upheaval caused by technology at the banks and wrote a Businessweek cover essay on Jamie Dimon and Lloyd Blankfein. Prior to his time at Bloomberg, the 1998 Binghamton University graduate spent eight years as a Reporter and Editor and the NY Daily News covering real estate and politics. The Queens native will be based in NYC. More here.
Univisión and TED Join Forces 
Univisión and TED, the nonprofit devoted to ideas worth spreading, announced yesterday that they are joining forces to launch TED en Español, TED’s first non-English podcast. The TED en Español podcast will make Spanish-language TED Talks available to the world for free in audio form. “The TED en Español podcast taps the explosive popularity of podcasts, and is a natural next step in our commitment to making ideas free and accessible to the world’s massive Spanish-speaking community. Our partnership with Univision will combine the strength of the company’s brand equity with TED’s efforts to produce and distribute the best ideas around the world, no matter where you are, no matter what language you speak,” said TED en Español host Gerry Garbulsky. The podcast launches April 26th. Más aquí.
HuffPost Announces New Hires
HuffPost announced its latest round of new hires late last week. Among them is Yvette Cabrera, who has joined the Enterprise team, covering environmental justice. Most recently, the Occidental College grad worked as an investigative reporter for ThinkProgress. Previously, she reported for the International Center for Journalists, the Guardian U.S., the Voice of OC, Mission & State, KCBS in Los Angeles, the Orange County Register, the Los Angeles Times, and KCET-TV. Her work has been honored by the National Association of Hispanic Journalists, the Dart Center for Journalism and Trauma, and the Journalism Center on Children & Families’ Casey Medals for Meritorious Journalism Awards. She is based in San Francisco and started with HuffPost on April 9th. HuffPost’s newest Front Page Editor is Priya Arora. The UC Irvine grad, who also has Master’s from both NYU and the Teacher’s College at Columbia University, was previously a front-page editor at Yahoo! Prior to that, she was a Web Editor with Hearst Business Media and a Content Editor at India.com. The announcement also highlighted the new Editor-In-Chief of HuffPost India, Aman Sethi, whom we introduced to you back in February, and other new hires in across the globe, as well as new roles for a number of existing staff. Meet the full slate here.
ProPublica Releases Diversity Numbers
ProPublica, which describes itself as “an independent, nonprofit newsroom that produces investigative journalism with moral force,” released diversity figures last week showing its newsroom to be 76% white, 8% Hispanic/Latino, 8% Asian, 4% Black, 4% two or more races and 1% other. “ProPublica is committed to increasing the diversity of our workplace as well as in the journalism community more broadly,” the outlet stated in a story written by their team. “As part of our commitment to diversity, starting this year we intend to formalize a practice we have already followed on most hires. We will interview at least one person of color for every posted job in line with the practice pioneered by the NFL and known as the ‘Rooney Rule.’ Many other entities have adopted this approach to increasing their diversity.” The outlet also said they are researching and evaluating multiple new programs to help increase diversity both inside and outside the newsroom. Call us. We’ve got binders full of great candidates. More here.
Can you guess who? That's Lin-Manuel Miranda and his dad, Luis Miranda, on Friday.
Missouri City, TX Mayor Allen Owen, Congressman Michael McCaul (R-TX), and Congressman Al Green (D-TX) on Monday after a Homeland Security Committee field hearing in Houston.
José Díaz-Balart and Georgetown Launch Internship Fund
Telemundo anchor José Díaz-Balart and Georgetown’s Institute of Politics and Public Service are teaming up to launch a new internship fund to provide $3,000 stipends for students in DC for unpaid summer internships in politics, media, government, public service, or journalism. Díaz-Balart, who was a Fellow at the school in 2017, donated his funds from the fellowship to create the program, and Telemundo has donated as well. The grant will be awarded to students whose “background or experience suggests that they contribute to the diversity of the Georgetown University community and could extend those contributions to a summer internship,” according to GU Politics. “I am grateful for the opportunity to support students in their academic development at Georgetown, a unique and extraordinary institution,” Díaz-Balart said. “I am honored by this partnership, which enables future leaders to pursue and secure competitive internship opportunities.” The program will be named after Díaz-Balart. More here.
Thurgood Marshall College Fund Says Work with Trump Admin Paid Off
Harry L. Williams
, President and CEO of the Thurgood Marshall College Fund, said that the group’s decision “not to resist, but instead engage in a strategic way and bipartisan fashion on behalf of our nearly 300,000 HBCU students who need a voice in Congress and with the Trump Administration has borne fruit at many levels.” The recently enacted Omnibus Appropriations bill included an increase for Pell Grant funding for students, funding for research grants from the National Institutes of Health (a top federal funding agency for HBCUs) and a 14% overall increase in appropriations for HBCUs at large. The former Delaware State University President also added that this is a “significant indicator of our growing partnership”, and will allow institutions to strengthen their physical plants, financial management, academic resources and endowment-building capacity. Southern University System President Ray L. Belton praised the engagement with the administration as well, stating, "I commend the members of Congress, including those who serve in the HBCU Caucus and our Louisiana delegation, for their bipartisan work to ensure that our institutions and programs are beneficial to our students and communities.” Despite winning federal assistance across the board, skepticism from HBCU presidents still persists. Hubert L. Grimes, Interim President of Bethune-Cookman University in Florida, said in an interview that though “the importance of federal government support for our institutions is indeed necessary,” administrators face a balancing act in joining momentum support, and recognizing the Trump administration is not popular with students and alumni. More here
FOMO
Today, 8A: The Hill Latino hosts the second in their "Leadership in Action" event series. This newsmaker conversation will feature Congresswoman Nanette Diaz Barragán (D-CA)Senator Lamar Alexander (R-TN), and House Democratic Whip Steny Hoyer (D-MD). Sponsored by American University's School of Public Affairs and the Kennedy Political Union. RSVP to events@thehill.com. 
Today, 2PCongressman Bobby Scott (D-VA) hosts a member Roundtable on Automation and Its Impact on Workers of Color in the Transportation Sector. Cannon House Office Building, Room 234 Washington, DC 20003. Click here for more information.
Today, 7P: Rally for Criminal Justice Reform with MD gubernatorial candidate Ben Jealous and special guest, Senator Cory Booker (D-NJ). Busboys and Poets, 5331 Baltimore Ave, Hyattsville, MD. Click here to RSVP.
Today - Friday, April 13th: The 2018 Advancing Justice Conference, at the Hyatt Regency in Washington, D.C. The conference brings together Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders from across the U.S. to address issues facing these fast-growing communities. Click here for more information and to register
Today - Tuesday, April 17th: The Black Mama Alliance is hosting the first National Black Maternal Health Week. Click here for more information
Thursday, April 12th, 3P: The U.S. House of Representatives will hold a ceremony to commemorate the 50th Anniversary of the assassination of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. The ceremony will take place in Statuary Hall at 3:00 p.m. RSVP to SpeakerRSVP@mail.house.gov.
Thursday, April 12th, 2018, 7P: The GW LULAC Student Chapter and the GW Cisneros Hispanic Leadership Institute host “Latinos and the Future of Constructive Politics.” Speakers will include Congresswoman Jenniffer González Colón (R-PR) and Congressman Darren Soto (D-FL), moderated by Laura Maristany, Associate Director, Constructive Politics, Democracy Fund. Marvin Center Amphitheater, 800 21st Street. RSVP here.
Thursday, April 12th - Saturday, April 14th: The 9th Annual Women in the World Summit, at the David H. Koch Theater at Lincoln Center in New York City. The event is presented and co-hosted by Toyota. Click here for more information.
Tuesday, April 17th, 8AThe Hill Latino hosts "Latinos in College: Closing the Graduation Gap." The program will feature lawmakers, university presidents, education officials, and students in a series of conversations exploring strategies to boost Hispanic college completion rates. The event is sponsored by Excelencia in Education and Gallup. 901 F Street, N.W. RSVP to events@thehill.com. 
Wednesday, April 18th, 6P: The Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund (MALDEF) 2018 Gala and Awards. Mayflower Hotel, 1127 Connecticut Avenue, N.W. To purchase tickets, contact Heaven Ocampo, hocampo@maldef.org or 213.629.2512 ext. 143. 
Wednesday, April 18th- 19th, 2018: Inter-Tribal Council of the Five Civilized Tribes Language Summit: Engaging Families. Northeastern State University, Tahlequah, OK. Click here for more information and to RSVP
Wednesday, April 18th - Saturday, April 21st: The National Action Network hosts its annual conference, this year commemorating the 50th anniversary of the assassination of Martin Luther King Jr. Sheraton Times Square, NYC. Click here for more information
Thursday, April 19th: The University of North Dakota sponsors a conference on the Dakota Access Pipeline and the Standing Rock protests. Click here for more information.
Tuesday, April 24th - Thursday, April 26th: The U.S. Hispanic Chamber of Commerce Legislative Conference. The Willard Intercontinental Hotel, DC. Click here for more information and to register.
Wednesday, April 25th - Friday, April 27th: The African American Mayor Association 2018 Annual Conference. DoubleTree Hotel, 300 Army Navy Drive, Arlington, VA. Click here to purchase tickets
Wednesday, May 2nd, 6P: The Latino Victory Fund hosts Latino Talks 2018, on how Latinos are changing America. Special guests include former Univisión anchor María Elena SalinasClick here to purchase tickets
Friday, May 11th, 9A: The U.S. Commission on Civil Rights holds a public briefing on hate crimes and bias-related incidents. The Commission will examine best practices for local law enforcement on collecting and reporting data, and the role of the Education and Justice Departments in prevention and prosecution. USCCR, 1331 Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W., Suite 1150. RSVP to publicaffairs@usccr.gov. Click here to watch a livestream of the briefing.
Monday, May 21st - Tuesday, May 22nd: Common Cause Pennsylvania will host their Democracy Works Summit. Sheraton Downtown Hotel on 201 N. 17th Street in Philadelphia, PA. Click here for more information. 
Wednesday, June 6th - Saturday, June 9th: The Black Enterprise Entrepreneurs Summit. Charlotte, NC. More than 1,000 CEOs, investors, and business experts are expected to attend.
Click here for more information and to register.
 
Thursday, June 21st - Sunday, June 24th: The Black Millennial Political Convention, which aims to increase engagement of Black millennials in the political sphere and shed a light on policy issues impacting black communities. This year’s theme is The Advocacy of Policy, Pipeline and Power for the People. Hyatt Regency, Crystal City, VA. Click here for more information and to purchase tickets.
Saturday, July 7th - Tuesday, July 10th: The 2018 UnidosUS annual conference, Marriott Marquis Hotel, DC. Click here for more information and to register.
Tuesday, July 17th - Wednesday, July 18th: The League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC) 2018 National Women’s Conference. Phoenix. Click here for more information and to register.
Wednesday, August 1st - Saturday, August 4th: The National Urban League 2018 Annual Conference “Save Our Cities: Powering the Digital Revolution.” Columbus, OH. Click here for more information and to register.
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