New Coalition President Thanks Mayor Daley

Published April 19, 2006

(Chicago, IL – April 19) Today, Lee Walker, president of The New Coalition for Economic and Social Change, sent a letter to City Hall thanking Chicago Mayor Richard M. Daley for his official recognition of the Booker T. Washington 150th Anniversary celebration, which will take place in Chicago on June 4-6, 2006.

The Mayor expressed his support for the event in a letter received by The New Coalition last week. “I commend the sponsors of this event for their commitment to the legacy of Booker T. Washington,” wrote Daley.

“This event,” responded Walker, “is important for our city but also for our nation, and your recognition carries national significance.” He continued: “This symposium will help restore a positive image to a name that meant so much to Chicago 100 years ago when Mr. Washington spoke to an audience of 16,000 people, including President McKinley, and became the first African American to address the President of the United States. There is no other city more fitting for this remembrance and renewal.”

The celebration will include two days of panel discussions, free and open to the public, addressing Washington’s legacy and the role that entrepreneurship, educational excellence, and self-reliance must play in the African American community. Among the participating scholars are William B. Allen, Glenn Loury, Carole Swain, and Anne Wortham. For a complete list of participants, visit

In addition to the free panel discussions, meal events at great Chicago locations will feature keynote addresses from prominent speakers. The opening dinner, on Sunday, June 4, will take place at the Chicago Athletic Club, as will breakfasts on Monday and Tuesday morning.

Lunches will take place at the Union League Club (Monday) and Metropolitan Club (Tuesday), while dinners will be hosted by the DuSable Museum of African American History on Monday night and on the Spirit of Chicago cruising Lake Michigan on Tuesday.

The 150th anniversary of Booker T. Washington’s birth presents a great opportunity to communicate his pro-education, pro-entrepreneurship, and pro-self-reliance messages to a new generation of civic and business leaders, academics, entrepreneurs, and students.

For more information about this event, visit The New Coalition Web site at, or contact Media Relations Assistant Michael Van Winkle at 312-377-4000 or via email at [email protected].