The years of growth & expansion
Over the years, The Black Slate has been the major force in starting, maintaining and or elevating the political careers of many past and current city leaders and office holders, both locally and nationally. In Detroit, The Black Slate was a chief force in electing the late John Conyers to Congress; School Board member, then State Representative, then U.S. Congresswoman Barbara Rose Collins; Detroit School Board member Mary Blackmon; Wayne County Commissioner Bernard Kilpatrick; State Senator Jackie Vaughn; Judge Cynthia Stephens; and U.S. Congresswoman Carolyn Cheeks Kilpatrick.
In Atlanta, Georgia, The Black Slate was a major force in electing Atlanta’s first Black mayor, Maynard Jackson. As Jaramogi established the Southern Region of the Shrines of the Black Madonna in Atlanta, he converted black Atlantans to the mindset of self-determination. Continuing his program of social activism, he sent Black Slate volunteers throughout the city educating the community, registering people to vote, and recruiting hundreds of college-aged Black youth.
The Slate was likewise instrumental in the successful campaigns of Atlanta mayors Andrew Young and Bill Campbell, U.S. Congressman John L. Lewis, Georgia Governor Roy Barnes, Georgia Secretary of State Max Cleland, and a host of others. In Houston, Texas, during the early ‘80s, The Slate helped galvanize the black vote.
Many whites who were attracted to Jaramogi’s keen insight and organizing skills came aboard to form the third wing of a highly successful coalition that swept Houston’s very first woman mayor, Kathy Whitmire, into office along with 36 new Democratic judges. Council members Rodney Ellis, Anthony Hall and Hispanic Ben Reyes were also on that first slate; all three won.
In 1984, when Reverend Jesse Jackson ran for President, The Black Slate helped organize Black people in Detroit, Atlanta, and Houston in support of his candidacy. Michigan was won by Rev. Jackson and it was the tremendous weight of Detroit’s record 90% voter turnout that helped swing the entire state into the Jackson column. Later, Harold Washington requested The Black Slate’s support in his bid to succeed John Daley. He became Chicago’s first Black mayor.
In 2001, The Black Slate was most instrumental in the successful effort to elect Mayor Kwame
M. Kilpatrick, along with City Council members Barbara Rose Collins, Brenda M. Scott, Ken Cockrel, Jr., Maryanne Mahaffey, Sharon McPhail, and Alonzo Bates. In 2002, our efforts contributed to the victories of several elected officials to the Michigan State Senate, the State House of Representatives, the Wayne County Commission, and many, many 3rd Circuit Court and 36th District Court Judges.
We exist to expedite the attainment of power (the ability to define and control our own destiny) and self-reliance (the awareness that we can depend on no one but ourselves to liberate us from the oppressive conditions in which we find ourselves).
In America, Black unity is not only Black power, it is Black survival.