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POLITICAL Awareness & Involvement P R E PA R I N G F O R B A T T L E : Melanie L. Campbell Talks Voter Rights, Education & Engagement in Preparation for Election 2012 BY ASHLEY CHANEY Melanie L. Campbell “At the end of the day, we’re trying to make sure that everyone hasthe right, not just Black folks, to exercise their right to vote without problems, fear or intimidation.”—SOROR MELANIE L. CAMPBELL SCoalition on Black Civic Partici- voter participation in Black and un- build coalitions to address black voter1. Tell us about the work of the NationalCoalition on Black Civic Participation tonon-partisan organization dedicatedto increasing civic engagement andoror Melanie L. Campbell, pres-ident and CEO of the National pation, says the enemy never sleeps, derserved communities. Founded in participation. so those rallying for voting rights and 1976, the coalition strives to create We are a coalition made up of na- inclusion can’t afford to either. an enlightened community by engag- tional organizations as well as state For Soror Campbell, the enemy is ing people in all aspects of public life affi liates and networks. Delta Sigma anyone putting together strategies to through service, volunteerism, advo- Theta Sorority, Inc. is one of our found- promote exclusion. Having served in cacy, leadership development and ing member organizations…We imple- the civil rights, social justice, youth voting. ment our mission through three strate- and women’s rights movements for As Delta chapters throughout the gic platforms. One is women and girls’ over 20 years, Soror Campbell is country rally to register, educate and empowerment, the other is youth and known for her powerful ability to engage voters in preparation for Elec- young adult initiatives, and the third is build diverse coalitions that bring tion 2012, The DELTA Journal caught civic engagement. people together for the common up with Soror Campbell to get her We have two key constituency good. She is an active member of perspective on voter repression, key programs that we actually implement Delta Sigma Theta Sorority’s National issues impacting the communities and work through. One is called Black Social Action Commission as well as the Sorority serves and pointers on Women’s Roundtable and the other numerous other civic and social jus- engaging voters this November and is Black Youth Vote. We have a third tice organizations. beyond. new initiative that we are working to The National Coalition on Black implement in 2012 called Foot Sol- Civic Participation is a non-profi diers for Democracy Project…which is t, 72 ▲ DELTA SIGMA THETA SORORITY, INC.


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