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Danny J. Bakewell, Sr., Chairman of NNPA meets with Valerie Jarrett, Senior Presidential Advisor.In an effort to further strengthen ties between President Obama and Black Press of America, Chairman Bakewell met with the President's senior advisor, Valerie Jarrett.Yussuf J. SimmondsSentinel Managing Editor Since becoming the chairman of the National Newspaper Publishers Association (NNPA), Danny J. Bakewell, Sr. has been working aggressively to make sure that the members of the nation's largest Black newspaper organization have a voice at all levels of society and government--especially in areas of policy-making. Recently Bakewell met with senior presidential advisor, Valerie Jarrett, to make sure that NNPA can be in a position to readily articulate the President's agenda effectively to the community and by becoming more actively involved in that agenda as a national organization. The meeting covered a wide range of topics that discussed ways in which both the NNPA and the administration could jointly affect the quality of life for African Americans throughout the country. According to Bakewell, "I would not divulge the specifics of the meeting at this time, but Ms. Jarrett was extremely committed to ensuring that the Black Press had full access to the President's agenda." He also added that the meeting was very fruitful and that he would put off discussing the full details, until a later date. "I will be releasing a list of activities which will be undertaken by NNPA and the President, as a result of the meeting and that story would depict future plans and involvement between NNPA and the President."Some of the actions that Bakewell has taken on behalf of the African American community and as chairman of the NNPA, include testifying before Congress during the census count; seeking ways for NNPA members to get their fair share of stimulus dollars; holding elected officials accountable; and raising the organization's profile to act on, instead of reacting to, problems within the African American community.
The NNPA, which has a membership of approximately 200 newspapers, has been and continues to be, a group of the President's unwavering supporters, and who has carried his message non-stop, unfiltered and unblemished, to its constituency and beyond.