Former Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa and Scholar Maulana Karenga, Founder of Kwanzaa, Named Lead Summit VII Keynote Speakers

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By Staff Reports

(Victor Valley) – Former Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa and Maulana Karenga, a professor and chair of Africana Studies at California State University, Long Beach, are the featured speakers at the Latino Education and Advocacy Days Summit VII at Cal State San Bernardino on March 30.

The annual one-day education summit, which returns to its roots at CSUSB after being held at the University of Texas, San Antonio in 2015, carries the theme of “Black, Brown and Indigenous Unity.” The conference will be held at the CSUSB Santos Manuel Student Union and will be hosted by CSUSB’s College of Education.

Attending the summit is free. Registration is now available online at 2016 LEAD Summit at https://events.r20.constantcontact.com/register/eventReg?oeidk=a07ec2xzaa9097c2c8f&oseq=&c=&ch.

Complimentary parking will be available in Lot D. In addition, OmniTrans will offer free, one-day passes on its buses to the summit at CSUSB. They can be obtained by filling out the online form at http://events.constantcontact.com/register/event?llr=ywih55cab&oeidk=a07ec3pdjtc0400be30.

The event will also feature Father Patrick Guillen, a Roman Catholic priest who was the co-founder of the community advocacy organization Libreria Del Pueblo in San Bernardino. He has been named the “padrino de honor,” or honorary chair, for the LEAD Summit.

Villaraigosa, once named by Time magazine as one of the top 25 influential Latinos in the United States, will give the featured address during an afternoon session. He served as the 41st mayor of Los Angeles (2005-2013) and on the city council (2003-2005). Prior to city office, he was elected to the California Assembly, representing a portion of Los Angeles (1994-2000), which included serving as the Assembly’s Democratic leader (1996-98) and assembly speaker (1998-2000).

Term limits prevented Villariagosa from seeking another mayoral term, but he continues to be actively engaged in education, civic engagement, water, immigration, transportation, and economic development issues, and speaks nationally and statewide on these issues.

Scholar and activist Karenga will deliver the capstone address at the end of the summit.  He is professor and chair of Africana Studies at Long Beach State and holds two Ph.D.s, one in political science and the other in social ethics with a focus in classical African ethics of ancient Egypt.

Karenga has played a major role in black intellectual and political culture since the 1960’s, especially in Black Studies, and social movements such as Black Power, Black Arts and the Million Man March/Day of Absence. He is also the executive director of the African American Cultural Center (Us), the Kawaida Institute of Pan-African Studies and chair of the National Association of Kawaida Organizations.

Karenga is also known as the creator of the pan-African cultural holiday Kwanzaa and the Nguzo Saba, and the author of Kawaida philosophy out of which both were conceived and developed.

He is also author of numerous scholarly articles and books, including: “Kwanzaa: A Celebration of Family, Community and Culture;” “Maat, The Moral Ideal in Ancient Egypt: A Study in Classical African Ethics;” and “Kawaida and Questions of Life and Struggle.” He is also subject of a new book by Molefi Asante, “Maulana Karenga: An Intellectual Portrait.” He is currently writing a book on the social and ethical philosophy of Malcolm X, “The Liberation Ethics of Malcolm X: Critical Consciousness, Moral Grounding and Transformative Struggle.”

The LEAD summit will be webcast simultaneously to more than 1,600 viewing sites in the United States and in 39 countries, including Mexico, Argentina, Belize, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Cuba, El Salvador, England, Guatemala, Iceland, Jamaica, Nicaragua, Panama, Spain and South Korea. The webcast is courtesy of LatinoGraduate.net.

For more information and to register online for the conference, visit the LEAD Summit website at http://leadsummit.csusb.edu, or contact Enrique Murillo Jr. at (909) 537-5632.

Set in the foothills of the beautiful San Bernardino Mountains, CSUSB is a preeminent center of intellectual and cultural activity in inland Southern California. Celebrating its 50th anniversary in 2015-2016, CSUSB serves more than 20,000 students each year and graduates about 4,000 students annually.

For more information about Cal State San Bernardino, contact the university’s Office of Strategic Communication at (909) 537-5007 and visit news.csusb.edu.

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