The future of blacks and black business has been a much talked about issue in the revitalization of Detroit including Midtown and downtown. Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan’s 2015 State of the City Address dwelled on inclusion in moving the city forward.
The United States Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Michigan, which is the principal litigator for the U.S. Department of Justice, has invited respected journalist and author Bankole Thompson to address this important issue as the keynote speaker for the DOJ 2015 Black History Month Program on Feb. 24 at the DOJ offices in downtown Detroit.
Thompson, a widely regarded multimedia journalist and opinion shaper, who is the editor at the Michigan Chronicle, accepted the invitation last month to address U.S Department of Justice prosecutors’ Black History Month Program under the theme “A Century of Black Life, History and Culture.”
On January 18, Thompson was given the 2015 “Martin Luther King Jr Award,” for his commitment to social justice and transformation by Plymouth United Church of Christ, a prominent African American Church in Detroit where the Rev. Dr. Nicholas Hood III is the senior pastor.
The DOJ invitation to Thompson suggested the journalist discuss the state of African Americans in Detroit’s comeback as well as young African American men. Thompson, whose articles are read in the political and economic establishment and by those closely following Detroit’s recovery has written extensively on those issues.
In December of last year he wrote “Any Room in the Money Inn?” https://michronicleonline.com/2014/12/31/2015-any-room-in-the-money-inn/ and most recently in an article titled “Mr. Mayor: Alternative State of the City Address” https://michronicleonline.com/2015/02/05/mr-mayor-alternative-state-of-the-city-address/ urged Mayor Duggan to discuss economic inclusion in his State of the City Address.
Thompson, is a member of the weekly “Obama Watch” Sunday program on WLIB-1190AM-New York, and simulcast in New Jersey and Connecticut. He speaks to key issues at the heart of social advancement including racial diversity, role of the media, multiculturalism, equity, leadership and identity.
In 2011, he, was a featured speaker at the Federal Bench and Bar Conference, where he spoke on “Media and the Law.”
A transcending journalist, Thompson, in 2011 delivered both the keynote addresses at the NAACP 98th Freedom Fund Dinner in Providence, Rhode Island as well as the Jewish Council for Public Affairs Leadership Conference in Detroit.
In 2012, he was the keynote speaker at the American Jewish Committee (AJC) Distinguished Leadership Dinner at the Townsend Hotel in Birmingham, MI. The New York Times described the AJC as the “dean of American Jewish organizations.”
A prolific writer, Thompson, has authored two instructive books on President Obama titled “Obama and Black Loyalty,” and “Obama and Christian Loyalty.” He is one of the first journalists in the nation to have a series of exclusive sit-down interviews with Obama.
The Eisenhower Foundation called him “a courageous voice and an example of journalism for the public good.”