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The Obama for America campaign has tapped longtime community leader Robert Cole to serve as Director of African American outreach in California.
Cole brings decades of experience to the Obama campaign. A native of Los Angeles, he most recently served as Chief of Staff for Assemblymember Curren D. Price (D-51) where he was instrumental in Price’s numerous legislative achievements, including key legislation to discourage voter intimidation. Cole also served as deputy to former State Assemblymember and now Secretary of State Debra Bowen. In 2005, he was appointed by Los Angeles Supervisor Yvonne Burke to the County Citizens’ Economy and Efficiency Commission.
Cole formerly served as a field director for United States Congressman John Lewis, in both his Atlanta and DC offices. He also assisted in African American outreach for both the Clinton/Gore and Kerry/Edwards campaigns.
As Director of African American Outreach for the Obama for America campaign in California, Cole will be organizing events in the African American community throughout the state, will serve as the campaign’s point person for African American outreach and will advise the Senator on issues of importance in the African American community in California.
The appointment of Cole underscores the importance and priority of the African American community to the Obama campaign.
“Robert Cole brings a wealth of experience to the Obama campaign,” said Mitchell Schwartz, Director of the California Obama for America campaign. “His extensive network and organizing experience will help us tranlate the enthusiasm we have found for Barack Obama’s campaign in African AMerican communities across the state into an organization ready to turn out the vote on February 5th.”
“Barack Obama has spent two decades bringing Americans change we can believe in,” said Cole. “Barack Obama’s campaign is the very product of decades of marches, protests and struggle by leaders like Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and Rosa Parks. He is the candidate who will unite all Americans and tell the country what we need to hear about the challenges we face.”
As one of Cole’s first initiatives, he has organized a statewide “Walk for Barack” this Saturday, November 10 specifically for African American communities throughout the state. Supporters of Senator Obama will go door-to-door in Oakland, Los Angeles, Long Beach and Compton to share with their neighbors and communities why they are supporting Barack Obama for President.
Cole earned his B. A. from Morehouse College with a degree in Criminal Justice and earned a J.D. from the American College of Law. He is married to Dr. Karen Ragland Cole, a practicing physician, and has a daughter, Raleah Lorian Cole, age 7; and a son, Karsten Rober Cole, age 18 months. He is a member of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity.
The Obama Campaign has already garnered more than 112,000 California supporters who registered on the national Web site with more than 700 My Barack Groups formed in the state. The Obama Campaign has created leadership teams that encompass all 53 California congressional districts who will be reaching out to their communities and neighbors from now until election day to turn out the vote on February 5, 2008 for Barack Obama.