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Poor Showings Leave Black Candidates Blaming Media in Chicago Mayoral Race

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By La Risa Lynch and J. Coyden Palmer, Special to the NNPA from The Chicago Crusader –

Three little elements played a major factor in the poor showing Tuesday of the three Black mayoral candidates – little money, little daily media exposure, and little turnout by Black voters doomed Carol Moseley Braun, Patricia Van Pelt Watkins, and William “Dock” Walls. They filled the bottom three slots in a six-person race to replace outgoing Mayor Richard M. Daley.

The defeat caused Walls, often described as “the perennial candidate”, to say Tuesday was his last race as a candidate. Watkins told the Crusader she is likely to continue pursuing political office but had not decided which one. Braun outlined a path for the city, but not a personal one. She wished Emanuel well “in his taking up the reins of government.”

But, she stressed the city must work for everyone not just those with a Wall Street agenda. “We will continue to make the case that the homeless, the hungry, and the unemployed deserve our attention and our support as well as La Salle Street,” she said. “If this city doesn’t work for them, it doesn’t work for no one.”

Following her concession speech at the Parkway Ballroom, Braun and her supporters ignored the many public gaffes during her campaign and blamed a lack of major Black funders for her inability to raise enough money to air radio and television commercials.

Members of Braun’s inner circle, former NBC 5 reporter Renee Fergurson, who served as communications director, and John W. Rogers Jr., founder of Ariel Capital Management, echoed each other regarding Braun’s fund raising efforts. Ferguson said big money dumped into Braun’s opponents’ campaign war chest worked against her.

“We know we were up against a huge amount of money,” Ferguson said. “We also know that our community’s business people are hurting, and they didn’t have the money to support us.” John Rogers Jr. backed Braun’s campaign early on. “It hurt her significantly that we were not able to raise as much as we had hoped. The money just wasn’t there,” he said.

“It was extraordinarily disheartening.” He points to the dire economic condition effecting Black businesses for the campaign’s financial woes. The election of the city’s first Black mayor Harold Washington was fuelled by Black businesses, like Ed Gardner’s Soft Sheen.

“We don’t have the same kind of progressive successful business leaders that are free to support progressive candidates,” he said. Watkins maintained that the daily (non-ethnic) news media carried the messages of Mayor-elect Rahm Emanuel to the detriment of all other candidates.

“They fed him [Emanuel] to us for breakfast, lunch, and dinner,” Watkins said. “There was no way to get around it. Even our children knew his name. Maybe that has happened in the past and I didn’t notice it because I wasn’t in the race, but I understood it this time. They [daily media] had chosen a leader already and they protected him. They looked over all of his faults and didn’t report on any of his shortcomings other than he had a bad temper. It was a lopsided race and we have to find a new way of communicating with voters.”

Like Watkins, Walls said the daily media did the city an injustice by creating an “air of inevitability” about Emanuel, which made it too difficult for the other candidates to get their message out. “When the media comes out and clearly says that ‘you are the heir apparent and you are the next mayor,’ people get on the bandwagon, including the people with money,” Walls said.

“When you’re able to raise $14 million, you’re able to buy up support in all corners and consistently run television commercials.”

For Watkins, it was the culmination of a campaign that saw her most publicity come from not what she said, but from what rival Carol Moseley Braun said during a community forum, in which she referred to Watkins as the woman who would not have known Braun’s accomplishments because she was “strung out on crack.”

That was the first time the daily media ever paid any attention to Watkins, a community activist and North Side native who grew up in the Cabrini Green Housing projects. At 3 p.m. Wednesday with all but 10 of the city’s precincts reporting, 41.7 per cent or 587,362 of the city’s 1.4 million registered voters had cast a ballot.

Emanuel garnered 55.25 percent of the votes with a total of 322,120 ballots. Gery Chico finished second with 139,716 votes representing 23.96 per cent. Miguel del Valle attracted 9.28 per cent with 54,110 votes and was closely followed by Braun with 8.97 per cent for a total of 52,280 votes. Watkins recorded the vote for a total of 9,573 votes for 1.64 per cent and Walls had 0.9 per cent representing 5,272 votes. Watkins said it is time for the political leadership in the city to start addressing the problem of how to rebuild the African American family.

Watkins said too many children in the Black community are raising themselves, whether they come from a two-parent home or not. Watkins added that Black residents must also demand equal access to employment and city services. “You only get these things when you begin to amplify your voice as a community after having a good understanding of what the problems and solutions are,” Watkins said.

Conversely, Walls said the issue of race is passe’ in city politics. Walls, who served as an aide for Mayor Harold Washington, the city’s first African American to hold the position, said he was surprised by the campaign of Carol Mosley Braun and her insistence that she be the “Black unity” candidate. Walls said the political climate has changed dramatically since 1983 when Washington was elected, and older Black politicians have to learn to stop playing the “race card” in elections.

“Maybe they’ve learned their lesson this time,” Walls said.

“We have to transcend race at some point. I hope this election was an opportunity to do that. Barack Obama was elected President of the United States despite Blacks making up less than 12 percent of the population. We have socioeconomic similarities with other communities and those things transcend race.”

Race apparently wasn’t a factor with some of the residents in the same 27th precinct of the Fifth Ward where Braun lives. The reasons for Hyde Parkers to vote against Braun were varied, but it was clear the beneficiary was Emanuel. It was Braun’s business dealings that moved Kate Hannigan’s to vote for Emanuel. Hannigan waited outside Ray Elementary School, 5631 S. Kimbark, for her husband to return from casting his vote.

“It don’t have a lot of confidence in the businesses she ran, and it makes me feel a little less confident in how she would run the city,” Hannigan said.

“Rahm, I do believe, would run with an iron fist, [and] I’m OK with that.” It was a process of elimination for Kelly Carroll. Carroll didn’t care for Gery Chico and believed Miguel del Valle wouldn’t stand a chance. Too many missteps on Braun’s part also excluded her. “Carol was out of the race because of her ill-advised comments that she made throughout,” Carroll said.

“That was unfortunate because I would love to support a woman.” The mayor’s race, she added, also got too divisive over selecting a consensus candidate to represent the city’s Black community.

Carroll said that became problematic and dissuaded her from backing any of the named candidates vying for the title during the election’s early days. “I would have been happy to support some of those candidates until that came up,” she said.

For Adolph Rogers, it was Emanuel’s business acumen that garnered his vote. Rogers said he was impressed that Emanuel was a self-made millionaire and has a commitment to public service. “He hasn’t been missing for 10 years like Carol Moseley Braun,” Rogers said. “Chico, he may have been around for a while, but I never heard of him on a political level in Chicago. And, the others don’t seem to measure up as far as the experience they have.” James McCormick cast a symbolic vote for Miguel del Valle. The Hyde Park resident predicted a run-off, between Rahm Emanuel and Gery Chico based on recent news polls.

“I voted for del Valle.” McCormick said. “He seemed like the most progressive candidate, and given that I feel it is a symbolic vote, that is the best way I felt I could make my own values heard.”

While checking on polling places, Alderman Leslie Hairston stopped to talk to the Chicago Crusader. Hairston, who serves as Democratic ward committeeman, was ensuring Fifth Ward polling places had everything they needed. Hairston had yet to cast her ballot that election day morning, but said this is an exciting time for Chicago residents. “This is the first time in 22 years where people will actually have a choice with creditable candidates,” Hairston said.

The election, she added, will not only shepherd in a new mayor, but also how the city council operates. There are 11 open aldermanic seats in the municipal election.

Watkins travelled to different high traffic areas – such as Ms. Biscuit on South Wabash and Wallace’s Catfish Corner on W. Madison Street looking to talk with voters after seeing how empty her polling place was on election day. She visited another site where there were three polling places in close proximity to one another and said there were more judges and poll watchers than voters. “It was like people were hiding out, like they didn’t believe they could do anything about their circumstances,” Watkins said.

“I think the low voter turnout and mindset that we can’t change anything is unfortunate for the city.”

Despite her poor showing, Watkins got just under 10,000 votes, she said she will not go away quietly into the night and is accessing her next move. She would not rule out another run for political office, but said she will need time to reflect and strategize for her future.

Two of Braun’s most notable supporters Congressman Danny K. Davis and Bobby L. Rush had differing views of Braun’s fourth place finish. Davis said he was surprised by Braun’s near 9 percent showing. He says that resulted from a lack of a political organizing machine within the Black community.

“I never would have thought that 9 percent would have been the number,” Davis said. Also the Obama factor did not help. Davis explained, many — especially in the Black community — viewed President Barack Obama’s characterization of Emanuel’s time in the White House as a thinly-veiled endorsement. “There were people who took all of that to mean that the president was endorsing Emanuel,” he said.

Regardless, Davis said he plans to work with mayor-elect Emanuel “to make sure that federal policy reflects the needs, the hopes, and aspirations of the people of Chicago. And, we’ll move on.”

Rush noted “the voters spoke, either by their actions or lack of action.” In the dimly lit Plush Lounge on the city’s Near West Side, Walls watched the returns with his wife and about two dozen supporters. The drab mood inside the establishment was symbolic of Walls’ campaign. He finished with a little over 5,200 votes, garnering him less than 1 percent of the total ballots cast. The Crusader spoke him early on election day. Walls said he is done running for political office and plans to practice law in the future.

Earlier in the day Walls visited several polling places throughout the city. He said it became clear that Emanuel was going to win in a landslide as all of his exit polling showed the mayor-elect was doing well in every neighborhood. “I think the people want a mayor who they can believe in and apparently Rahm Emanuel is that person because he got an overwhelming percentage of the vote and that’s a mandate, especially when you had a lot of other good candidates,” Walls said.

Walls said despite his unsuccessful run, he believes he was able to raise several issues that would have never been talked about. Walls is in favor of mayoral term limits, something he pushed throughout his campaign and said the Chicago Public Schools system needs to be completely revamped to have dozens of good schools, instead of just a few elite ones.

Walls supporter Tania Hawkins told the Crusader after she voted in her South Side ward that Walls came off as the most articulate of the six candidates and based her vote on the candidates political stance. She said she was not influenced by the television or radio ads of other candidates because she saw those as “orchestrated advertisements” and to truly gauge a candidate, she watched the debates and how candidates responded to questions put to them by journalists.

“To me Walls is the only one who seems to have an idea of what the people of Chicago are going through and he has no political ties, which means he doesn’t owe anybody,” Hawkins said. “I never thought he would win, but I couldn’t bring myself to voting for any of the other candidates because I didn’t like their messages.”

Readin', Writin' & Race: Education Snapshots in Black and White

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By TaRessa Stovall, Special to the NNPA from thedefendersonline.com –

A quick round-up of recent education stories offers a glimpse into the complex stew of progress, setbacks, and conflicting news that represents race and learning in America today.

Higher Learning: A rare piece of good-news-in-Black-education comes from a widely-reported story about Urban Prep, a charter school for Black males from some of Chicago’s most disenfranchised neighborhoods, which has sent 100 percent of its graduates to college for the second year. The four-year-old school was founded to provide quality alternative education to its students, 85 percent of whom live below the poverty line and most who came to Urban Prep reading below grade level. All 107 of last year’s inaugural graduating class were accepted into colleges.

“Not only are these young men being accepted to college, they are being recruited by some of the best higher education institutions in the United States,” reported EduinReview.com. “One student this year was accepted to 21 colleges, and received $719,000 in scholarships.” Among his choices: Harvard, Yale and Wheaton College.

Two additional campuses have opened in Chicago, and plans were announced to reproduce the Urban Prep formula in other cities.

Mo’ Down in Motown: A new plan to close 44 schools and one administrative building in the financially-devastated Motor City this June “will create a leaner, smarter Detroit Public Schools,” according to Robert Bobb, emergency financial manager for the city’s school district. Bobb unveiled a $1 billion plan slated to cut some $31 million in operating expenses and lower future maintenance costs.

“We have no more time to waste. We know that we have not only a financial emergency but an academic emergency as well. In many of our schools, we have a reading emergency, a writing emergency, a science emergency, and a math emergency,” Bobb said in a statement.

This is in addition to 29 Detroit schools that were closed last year. “The nearly 88,000-student district faces a deficit of at least $219 million. Full-time enrollment is projected to drop to about 56,000 by 2015,” reported MSNBC.com. “The plan seeks to reduce costs by eliminating unused space in the wake of shrinking enrollment, as students flee to the suburbs. It will mean thousands of students once again will be shuffled between neighborhood schools.”

The closures and mergers dovetail with an academic plan Bobb unveiled recently that call for a 98 percent graduation rate and 100 percent of students being accepted to college by 2015.

Detroit may regret turning down a $200 million gift to revitalize its schools in 2004. As a September 30, 2010 editorial in the Detroit News reports, Bob Thompson, a road builder, wanted to give the bulk of his fortune to local education to help schools graduate 90 percent of their students and send 90 percent of those graduates on to college. “Instead of grabbing the money and doing a happy dance, Detroiters, as is their custom, wailed about a suburban outsider taking away their schools and stealing their children,” the paper stated. “Then-Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick told Thompson to just drop off the check and let Detroit Public Schools decide how to spend it.”

Memo to Detroit: See Newark.

Newark’s Facebook-funded Consolidation: Newark, N.J. school officials are looking at a consolidation plan to make more space for 11 charter schools, according to The Washington Post. The story suggests the move is part of an “overhaul” funded by a recent $100 million grant from Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg to Newark Mayor Corey Booker.

“The plan calls for some long-struggling schools to be closed and their students sent elsewhere. Other schools with low enrollment could be consolidated, The Post reports. “The buildings freed up by the moves would be used to house new and existing charter schools. It’s unclear whether they would pay rent.”

But officials say the news is premature. The Star-Ledger newspaper obtained the draft of a proposal that wasn’t meant for the public, according to Rochelle Hendricks, acting state deputy education commissioner leading the team that is overseeing the transition of Newark’s schools. “While Hendricks told the Star-Ledger that “The co-locations for charters is not finalized in any way, shape or form,” the paper reports that Newark school officials will announce the creation of five new public schools at a meeting of the Newark Public School Advisory Board on February 22.

The new schools are: Bard Early College, Green School, Diploma Plus, Harvey Milk (designed for gay and lesbian students) and YouthBuild (for students transitioning from jail and other trouble) .Unlike charter schools, they will be run by the Newark school district. Each will be housed or share space within an existing Newark school.

Hendricks emphasized that the goal is to offer more options to Newark students while making the best use of the buildings. She said that no school facilities will be closed.

Black Professors, Where Art Thou?: Dr. Boyce Watkins, a popular blogger, media commentator, speaker and a professor of finance at Syracuse University, reports a that a recent survey at his YourBlackWorld.com site reveals that “42 percent of blacks who attended white universities never had a black professor, and that close to three-quarters of blacks have had only one black professor during their college career,” according to NewsOne.com. Watkins said he hadn’t had any Black professors in his college career, adding that few Black professors are granted tenure, but are given temporary or visiting positions to pump up school diversity statistics. He also reported that half of the survey respondents from Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) said they hadn’t had more than three African-American professors in fields outside of African-American or Africana Studies.

While related statistics weren’t available at press time, at least one undergraduate student felt the sting of racism in pursuit of her studies. Murray State University freshman Arlene Johnson arrived early to a political science class to find a film in progress. When she asked the professor, Mark Whattier, about the timing, he said that he typically started films before class, adding that, he “expected” Black students to be late because “slaves never showed up on time, so their owners often lashed them for it.”

Johnson filed a complaint with the Office of Equal Opportunity that day, and Wattier was later suspended.

Minorities Given ‘Unfair Edge?’: The Center for Equal Opportunity, which opposes race-based affirmative education in colleges and universities, is attacking Ohio State University and Miami University, both in Ohio, for allegedly admitting “blacks over whites” with their new report, “Racial and Ethnic Preferences in Undergraduate Admissions at Two Ohio Public Universities” released last week.

Officials from both schools criticized the study, releasing statements that they select students based on a variety of factors beyond race and ethnicity, including the rigor of their high school courses, strength of their school, essays, leadership and work experience, and examples of overcoming obstacles and demonstrating progress. With OSU and MU released statements last week saying that they look at a variety of factors that transcend a student’s race and ethnicity when doling out seats on campus.

“The report charges that Miami University admitted Blacks over Whites at a ratio of 8 to 1 and 10.2 to 1 using SAT and ACT, respectively, as well as other factors, such as grades, gender, residency and year of admission, and that Ohio State University admitted Blacks over Whites at a ratio of 3.3 to 1 and 7.9 to 1 using the SAT and ACT, respectively,” according to Diverse Issues in Higher Education.

“The report also claims that MU admitted Hispanics over Whites at a ratio of 2.2 to 1 using either the SAT or ACT, and that OSU admitted Hispanic over White students at a ratio of 4.3 to 1 and 6.5 to 1 using the SAT and ACT, respectively. The schools were also found to give a “modest degree of preference” to Asian students,” Diverse Issues stated.

Dolan Evanovich, Vice President for Strategic Enrollment Planning at OSU, said after the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in the landmark Grutter v. Bollinger case that stated the University of Michigan’s affirmative action could be used in college admissions but only on a limited basis, and that OSU implemented a ‘holistic review’ for all applications.

An Increasingly Different World for Some HBCUs: The globalization of American higher education is a passport to “steep challenges” for several Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs), according to a new, as yet, unreleased, survey by the Association of Public and Land-Grant Universities.

The Chronicle of Higher Education reports that a survey of 14 of the country’s 18 historically laBck land-grant institutions suggests that in the 2008-9 academic year:

■Six had no full-time employee in charge of campus internalization, and the average institution had fewer than two people devoted to that area;

■Only 0.55 percent of their students studied abroad, and more than one-third of those who did were White, compared to 14 percent of students at predominantly-White institutions;

■International students made up only 1.78 percent of the student body on these campuses, compared to close to 4 percent for all higher education institutions.

The report explains that historically Black institutions tend to send students to locations that majority-White institutions do not. The Black colleges and universities surveyed offered as many study-abroad programs in Africa as they did in Europe, long the dominant destination for college students nationwide; and they attract many Caribbean students.

In a nation struggling with every aspect of its public education system, it’s clear that race is every bit as relevant as readin’, writin’ and ‘rithmetic today as in years past, and for the foreseeable future.

TaRessa Stovall is Managing Editor of TheDefendersOnline.

Spectator Asks, 'Who Will Shoot Obama?'

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Ga. GOP Rep’s Failure to Condemn Draws Fire

Special to the NNPA from the AFRO-American newspapers –

House Rep. Paul Broun (R-GA) is receiving national attention after a spectator at one of his recent town hall meetings in Athens, Ga. asked, “Who will shoot Obama?”

According to The Athens-Banner Herald, the question came after the congressman first asked who had driven the farthest to attend the Feb. 22 town hall meeting. After the attendee blurted the comment, the crowd began to laugh.

Without apparently condemning the comment, Broun, according to the Banner-Herald, nevertheless responded by stating, “The thing is, I know there’s a lot of frustration with this president. We’re going to have an election next year. Hopefully, we’ll elect somebody that’s going to be a conservative, limited-government president…who will sign a bill to repeal and replace Obamacare.”

After the incident drew national headlines and criticism toward Broun for not immediately condemning the comment, he released a statement Feb. 23 expressing his thoughts after the spectator’s question and his reason for not condemning it.

“I was stunned by the question and chose not to dignify it with a response; therefore, at that moment I moved on to the next person with a question,” Broun said in a statement, according to The Politico newspaper. “After the event, my office took action with the appropriate authorities. I deeply regret that this incident happened at all. Furthermore, I condemn all statements--made in sincerity or jest--that threaten or suggest the use of violence against the president of the United States or any other public official. Such rhetoric cannot and will not be tolerated.”

According to The Washington Post, Secret Service officials got in contact with the person who made the comment and found that it was an “elderly person who now regrets making a bad joke.”

Broun drew criticism last month for one of his tweets during President Obama’s State of the Union address. According to Politico, Broun tweeted, “Mr. President, you don’t believe in the Constitution, you believe in socialism.”

The next day, he declined to back down from his comments, telling CBS News, “I stick by that tweet.”

Herman Cain Slams Liberals, gets Slammed in Return

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Special to the NNPA from the AFRO-American newspapers –

Herman Cain, the first Tea Party-backed candidate to take the initial steps toward a 2012 presidential run, is already making waves.

In a speech at the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC), Cain, an African-American, ruffled feathers with his thoughts on why he disagrees with the direction of America. “The objective of liberals is to destroy this country,” Cain said in his speech. “The objective of liberals is to make America mediocre like everybody else who aspires to be like America.”

Cain, the former chairman and CEO of Godfather Pizza is an Atlanta-based radio talk show host who formed an exploratory committee last month to weigh a 2012 presidential bid.

An Atlanta native who holds degrees in mathematics from Morehouse College and in computer science from Purdue University, Cain rose through the ranks first with the Coca-Cola Company and later as an executive with Burger King and its parent company Pillsbury in the late 1970s and early 1980s.

According to a company history, Pillsbury appointed Cain as president of Godfather’s Pizza, then a subsidiary of the food conglomerate, in 1986. But two years later, citing weakening profits, Pillsbury encouraged Cain and a group of senior managers to buy out Godfather’s and run it independently.

After turning around that company, he left to become president of the National Restaurant Association in 1994, according to his presidential exploratory committee Web site, during which time he began a political career as a lobbyist and speaker for the food industry.

He challenged then-President Clinton on the president’s health care reform proposal in 1994, and later ran unsuccessfully for U.S. Senate in Georgia, finishing second in the Republican primary to the eventual victor of the seat, Johnny Isakson. More recently, he took the national stage last year to defend against claims that the Tea Party movement incorporated racist elements, according to Yahoo! News.

At CPAC, Cain detailed the tactics he believes liberals use to gain a political advantage. “[Liberals] only have three tactics: S.I.N.,” Cain said. “They shift the subject, they ignore facts and they name-call.”

His speech immediately drew sharp criticism from AlterNet, a progressive blog. The blog post went past Cain’s politics and, in a commentary by Chauncy DeVega, a Black progressive activist, brought race in to the discussion.

“Instead, Herman Cain’s shtick is a version of race minstrelsy where he performs ‘authentic negritude’ as wish fulfillment for White Conservative fantasies,” the posting said. “Like the fountain at Lourdes, Cain in his designated role as Black Conservative mascot, absolves the White racial reactionaries at CPAC of their sins.”

“This is a refined performance that Black Conservatives have perfected over many decades and centuries of practice,” it continued.

That response garnered national attention for Cain, as many have come to his defense. Journalist and commentator Juan Williams, appearing on Sean Hannity’s self-titled show on Fox News said the comment was “Black-on-Black” crime. “It is just so insulting,” Williams said. “And, the idea that this is Black on Black crime. It's essentially a Black-on-Black drive-by shooting in my mind. It just blows your mind. It's the start of the 21st century. He accuses Herman Cain of being a minstrel for giving a speech at CPAC. Now, if nobody spoke who was Black at CPAC, then you'd say, oh CPAC is racist.”

Cain is also a cancer survivor; he was diagnosed with Stage IV cancer in both his liver and colon in 2006, but underwent surgery and chemotherapy and has said he is now cancer-free.

Cain has temporarily left his radio talk show as he considers a possible presidential campaign, according to The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. He plans on making more appearances at Tea Party events.

Dr. Calvin C. Green, Unsung Civil Rights Hero Succumbs at 79

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By Jeremy M. Lazarus, Special to the NNPA from the Richmond Free Press –

Dr. Calvin C. Green led the fight against segregated schools in New Kent County. In the process, he would father a U.S. Supreme Court case that legal scholars now rank second in importance to the landmark 1954 Brown v. Board of Education case that outlawed racially separated public schools.

He is the unsung hero of the case known as Green v. New Kent County, which came 14 years after Brown and finally required governments across Virginia and the South to end school apartheid. Dr. Green, who also was a pastor, schoolteacherm and Army Reserve officer, succumbed to cancer earlier this month, at his residence in Quinton in New Kent County. He was 79.

“He was devoted to helping people,” said Ella Mary Osborne Green, his wife of 56 years. “He pushed education.”

Dr. Green launched the landmark lawsuit while serving as president of the New Kent NAACP branch, which he led for 16 years. He led the fight in 1964, a decade after the nation’s highest court had issued the Brown decision overturning segregated schools. But, little had changed in New Kent which, like hundreds of Southern school districts, largely ignored the Brown ruling. Fed up, Dr. Green rallied Black parents and began pushing for change based on provisions of the newly enacted 1964 Civil Rights Act. The new law contained provisions barring school segregation.

But, the most the county would offer was a so-called “freedom of choice” plan that allowed Black parents to petition for their children to attend all-white schools instead of the shabbier Black schools. Working with NAACP lawyers, notably Oliver W. Hill Sr., Samuel W. Tucker, and Henry L. Marsh III, Dr. Green rejected that approach as a sham and brought the federal lawsuit, with his youngest son, Charles C. Green, now a teacher in Winston-Salem, N.C., as the lead plaintiff.

The effort was vindicated four years later when the U.S. Supreme Court issued the Green decision.

Impatient with the slow pace of desegregation, the court used the Green case to reject freedom of choice plans and to order school systems to provide racial balance in all schools. The goal: To “convert promptly to a system without a ‘white school’ and a ‘Negro school’ but just schools,” the court wrote. In the wake of the case, the percentage of black students attending desegregated schools rose from 32 percent in the 1968-69 school year to 72 percent in the 1970-71 school year. Busing for racial purposes became commonplace.

Born into a Middlesex County family of 11 children, Dr. Green served in the Korean War and then spent 36 years as an officer in the Army Reserve. He rose to the rank of colonel and served in the medical service and as a chaplain before retiring in 1991.

He also was a schoolteacher in Richmond for 33 years. He began teaching at Armstrong High School and led the school’s JROTC program after earning a bachelor’s degree in biology from Virginia State University in 1956.

He would later add a master’s degree from North Carolina A&T and a doctorate from Nova Southeastern University. He served as chairman of the science department at Thomas Jefferson before he retired in 1990.

He also found time to follow his father, the Rev. James H. Green, into the ministry. He served as pastor of Lebanon Baptist Church in New Kent for five years and also was pastor of Calvary Baptist Church in Saluda for 13 years.

He earned a master’s of theology degree from Virginia Union University, a doctorate of theology from the International Bible Institute and Seminary in Orlando, Fla., and doctorate in pastoral counseling from the International Seminary University in Plymouth, Florida.

In recent years, he operated an income tax service and computer servicing business.

In 2000, he created and ran two trusts to offer financial aid to help students attend college and victims of natural disasters.

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