NAACP Dinner

I was honored to sit right in between Congressman Chris Van Hollen and Congresswoman Donna Edwards at tonight’s annual NAACP banquet.  The City of Gaithersburg sponsors the event for the Montgomery County branch of the NAACP each year, but this year was especially nice as our own City Manager Angel Jones was the chairperson of the event and she did a fabulous job organizing a well-run gala.   It was a packed house filled with hundreds of activists including many elected officials.  The keynote speaker was former Baltimore Mayor and current Howard University Law School Dean Kurt Schmoke, who inspired the crowd to build on past successes.

Finding myself sitting right between them at the City of Gaithersburg’s table, I also didn’t miss the opportunity to explain to Reps. Van Hollen and Edwards the challenges facing municipal governments in this economic climate, and to lobby them on the need for Community Development Block Grant funding from the federal government.  And because spurring economic development is a key to Gaithersburg’s future success, I also took time to urge some of the state legislators at the event to support funding for the Watkins Mill interchange, which will inject much-needed energy into the revitalization efforts for that area.

The speeches and the vocal performances, along with the presentation of awards to many impressive educators and students, reminded everyone present to renew our commitment to improving our community and to celebrating education, the arts, and activism.  It was a terrific evening, and as always, I was proud to be a part of it.


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