The National Coalition on Black Civic Participation

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Oct 28, 2008

We Voted, Now What?

BYV! Leadership Training Conference to teach civic engagement beyond the election

Washington, DC - The Eighth Annual Black Youth Vote! (BYV!) Civic Leadership Training Conference, ““We Vote, Now What?: Taking Youth Civic Engagement to the Next Level,” will take place November 12-15, 2008 at the National Education Association headquarters, 1201 16th Street, NW, Washington, DC.

“This is an exciting year for Black Youth Vote!,” says Melanie L. Campbell, executive director and CEO of the National Coalition on Black Civic Participation (NCBCP), the parent organization for Black Youth Vote. Campbell continues, “They worked hard to register new voters, educate them on the issues and their rights at the polls, and make sure they turn out in record numbers. They did a phenomenal job this year.”

The BYV! conference will train young leaders and activists on how to impact public policy and hold elected officials accountable. The conference includes a legislative briefing on Capitol Hill, panel discussions and workshops designed to prepare participants to execute a Black youth agenda during first 100 days of the new administration. Speakers include Kemba Smith, Kemba Smith Foundation; Illai Kenney, Georgia Kids Against Pollution; Rebecca Thompson, DC Youth Advisory Council Executive Office of the Mayor; and author, activist, and journalist, Kevin Powell.

A media briefing November 12th at the National Press Club in DC will kick off the conference. Moderated by BET’s Jeff Johnson, the first of two panels, “We Voted: The Power of the Black Youth Vote in ’08,” will analyze the role that black youth played in mobilizing the historic voter turnout in the 2008 election. Organizers will also share tactics used to successfully mobilize young voters including the integration of new technology for voter registration, education, mobilization and voter protection.

Panel Two, “Now What?: Leveraging the Black Youth Agenda in the First 100 Days,” will outline critical next steps as it relates to pressing issues like the economic crisis, healthcare, education, the environment, national security, and felony disenfranchisement.

BYV! is the youth initiative of the National Coalition on Black Civic Participation (NCBCP), a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization dedicated to increasing African American civic participation. Founded in 1996 to increase participation among 18-35 year old youth, BYV! was lauded for having a major impact on the record turnout of young voters during the 2004 presidential election.

Over the past year BYV! traveled the country on their Black Youth Vote Justice Speak Out Tour, registering new voters, educating young voters on the issues, disseminating important information on voting rights, and urging voters to be among the first to vote in the historic 2008 election.

For more information on the conference or Black Youth Vote please contact William Kellibrew IV, Black Youth Vote! coordinator at 202.659.4929.

CONTACT: To schedule an interview contact Edrea at 818.613.9621 or

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