The National Coalition on Black Civic Participation

Black Women's Roundtable

Black Women's Roundtable

At Standing-Room Only Black Women's Roundtable Forum, Black Women Leaders Amplify Priorities Important For Presidential Candidate To Win Their Vote

WASHINGTON, D.C.—The Black Women’s Roundtable (BWR), in partnership with ESSENCE and the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation, recently hosted the 11th Annual BWR “Women of Power” Policy Forum with a standing-room crowd of nearly 300 attendees, and over 20,000 watching the event live on #RolandMartinUnfiltered. The two-part strategy conversation (still viewable online), featured some of the nation’s most influential Black women leaders from across the spectrum of politics, philanthropy, business, labor, civil and human rights, faith, law enforcement, media, academia, and community activists.

The first power table session—moderated by Tiffany Cross, managing editor of The Beat DC—featured Congresswoman Karen Bass (CA-37), Chair, Congressional Black Caucus , Melanie L. Campbell, President & CEO and National BWR Convener, Yesha Callahan of ESSENCE, Shani Hosten of AARP, Menna Demessie of the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation, and Alfreda Robinson of the National Bar Association, CJ Davis, President, National Organization of Black Law Executives & Chief of Police, Durham, NC and several others. They dissected the results of this year’s much-talked-about Power of the Sister Vote Poll, which measured the opinions of more than 1,000 Black women on the 2020 presidential candidates, the most critical issues impacting Black America, and threats to U.S. democracy. The session then broadened to include a conversation during which the women shared their ideas and insight on how best to center a justice agenda for Black women and their families.

The second power table session—moderated by Angela Rye, CNN political analyst, and CEO of Impact Strategies— featured Tomeka Hart of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, Katleyn Jackson of The Coca-Cola Company, Joi L. Owens of Oxfam America, Michelle DuBois of Values Partnerships, and Candi Castleberry Singleton of Twitter. They discussed how Black women leaders in philanthropy, civic engagement, and politics are using their influence to employ strategies that leverage the voting power of Black women and young people in the 2020 presidential election cycle and also ensure a fair count of the Black population in the 2020 Decennial Census.

Melanie L. Campbell, BWR National Convener and President & CEO of the National Coalition on Black Civic Participation shared, “Our goal with hosting this annual cross-generational forum focused specifically on Black women from varying backgrounds is to strategize and organize ourselves in a way that continues to expand and strengthen the power of Black women’s leadership and moves a policy agenda focused on our needs forward.”

See the BWR “Women of Power” Policy Forum photo gallery.

To learn more about BWR and the annual “Power of the Sister Vote” poll:

Visit to read the 2019 BWR/ESSENCE Poll results in its entirety.
Watch the Facebook video playback of the 2019 BWR Policy Forum on #RolandMartinUnfiltered.
Listen or watch the media briefing for the 2019 BWR/ESSENCE “Power of the Sister Vote” Poll.
Read the ESSENCE poll article on the BWR/ESSENCE Poll.


The Black Women’s Roundtable is an empowerment program from the National Coalition on Black Civic Participation, a nonprofit organization that works to engage, educate, organize and mobilize African Americans of all ages to participate in our democracy. Through educational programs and leadership training, the Coalition works to expand, strengthen, and empower Black communities to make voting and civic participation a cultural responsibility and tradition. Follow us on Twitter and join our Facebook group.

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