May 26, 2018
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2009 National Urban League Conference July 29- Aug 1

More Than 4,000 People Converge in Chicago; Influential Thought Leaders, Experts, and Celebrities Expected to Attend Power-Packed Conference



WHAT:            The 2009 National Urban League Conference.


WHERE:         McCormick Place Convention Center, West Building, Chicago


WHEN:            July 29 – Aug. 1



The 2009 National Urban League Conference in Chicago will give attendees everything they need to find personal and professional success in these challenging economic times.


                        Themed “The Path to Power,” influential business, community and political thought leaders from around the country will participate to offer valued advice and insight.  Everyone who attends the conference will leave with the resources and inspiration they need to succeed on their own path to power. 


                        Power-packed plenary sessions include:  The Path to Power, The State of Black America and 21st Century Now Leadership for a “NOW” Generation; workshops cover important topics like tips on preventing foreclosure; how to invest in a challenging economy; how to take advantage of the new “green” economy; the importance of being counted in the 2010 Census and building America’s workforce and how to save our children.


                        The NUL Experience Expo & Career Fair is the largest ever and FREE to the public.  Hundreds of recruiters will participate in the career fair to speak with perspective employers for available jobs.  There will be opportunities for resume critiques, one-on-one career coaching sessions and tips on job searches.  The Women’s Black Expo will be on the exhibit hall floor and will provide entertainment for the main stage including Dru Hill.  Attendees can also attend various zones to get financial and health information; get health screenings, experience the latest in technology devices and tips on being “green.”


Noted participants include:  CNN’s Soledad O’Brien and Roland Martin,  U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan, NAACP President and CEO Benjamin Jealous, Bank of America CEO Kenneth Lewis, Earvin “Magic” Johnson, the Rev. Jesse Jackson, the Rev. Al Sharpton, MSNBC political correspondent Michelle Bernard, EPA Administrator Lisa Perez, Chicago Mayor Richard M. Daley, HGTV’s Kim Myles, Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan and many others.


                        National Urban League President and CEO Marc Morial, who is available for interviews throughout the conference, will kick off this important event with an inspirational keynote address on the evening of July 31. 




**Conference Highlights**


Wednesday, July 29

10:30am                      Press Avail – DuSable Museum, Chicago


6pm                             National Urban League President and CEO Marc H. Morial kicks off the conference his State of Urban League Address (Keynote Session) at Apostolic Church of God.


8pm                             Welcome reception hosted by the Chicago Urban League and actors Tracee Ellis Ross and Terrance Howard and performances by Ne-Yo and Yung Joc




Thursday, July 30

8:30 a.m.                     Marc H. Morial leads a discussion on the “Path to Power.”  Participants include:   NAACP President and CEO Benjamin Jealous; John Payton, president and director-counsel, NAACP Legal Defense Fund; Greg Nickels of the U.S. Conference of Mayors; the Rev. Al Sharpton, Chicago Urban League President and CEO Cheryle Jackson and Chris Gardner, author of Pursuit of Happyness and CEO Christopher Gardner International Holdings.         


12pm                           Bank of America President and CEO Kenneth Lewis is the keynote speaker at the National Urban League Business Luncheon.  U.S.  Department of Education Secretary Arne Duncan will give remarks.


2:00pm                        CNN’s Soledad O’Brien moderates a panel on “The State of Black America” with panelists:  BET’s Jeff Johnson; MSNBC political correspondent Michelle Bernard; Dr. John Jackson, president, Schott Foundation and others.  U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development Secretary Shaun Donovan gives remarks.


8:30pm                        Electrifying performance by R&B singing sensation EnVogue.


Friday, July 31

10:30am                      “Preparing for the Future” Special Forum: Chicago Mayor Richard M. Daley and Earvin “Magic” Johnson participate in a discussion on how to build America’s workforce.  Other panelist include Thomas J. Wilson, chairman, president and CEO, the Allstate Corporation; ComEd Chairman and CEO Frank Clark; Robert J. Bach, president, Entertainment & Devices Division, Microsoft; Paula Prahl, SVP, Communications & Public Affairs, Best Buy and Wayne D. Watson, president, Chicago State University.


10:30am                      How can African-Americans prepare to take advantage of the “green” economy?  EPA Administrator Lisa Perez Jackson; Candace Taylor, director, corporate strategy and sustainability, Wal-Mart; and Phaedra Ellis-Lamkins, president, Green for All are among the panelists who will discuss green economy opportunities.


10:30am                      It is extremely important that African Americans are counted in the 2010 Census.  Discussing this important subject are USDA Asst. Secretary Joe Leonard; Ronald Walters, leadership scholar, department of Government & Politics University of Maryland; Melanie Campbell, executive director and CEO, National Coalition on Black Civic Participation and Stephanie Jones, executive director, National Urban League Policy Institute.


2:15pm                        Ed Gordon of Our World, Black Enterprise will moderate a panel on 21st Century Leadership for a “now” generation.  Panelists include:  Earvin “Magic” Johnson, HGTV’s Myles of Style host Kim Myles; Keli Goff, MSNBC commentator and blogger and others.


3:45pm                        The economy may be challenging, but it’s still important to invest and prepare for the future.  CNBC Personal Finance Correspondent Sharon Epperson and Derek T. Dingle, SVP, editor-in-chief for Black Enterprise and others will guide participants on asset management and tools to build wealth through investing.


8:30pm                        CNN & Essence Presents:  “Reclaiming the Dream”, a special red carpet premiere at the Chicago Theatre.




Saturday, August 1

8:30am                        The Rev. Jesse L. Jackson is the featured speaker for the Urban League Family Session & Breakfast plus a special performance by BET’s Sunday Best Shari Addison.


12pm                           The Women of Power Luncheon, hosted by CBS News Correspondent Michelle Miller, honors extraordinary African-American women that include:  U.S. Congresswoman Barbara Lee (D-CA), Judge Penny Brown Reynolds, host of Family Court with Judge Penny; Paula Madison, EVP, diversity, NBC Universal



7:30pm                        The Whitney M. Young, Jr. Awards Gala will honor Tyra Banks, former Illinois State Senator Emil Jones and Alexis Herman, CEO, New Ventures as Living Legends.  Chicago Mayor Richard M. Daley will receive the first National Urban League President’s Award and Robert J. Brown, chairman and & CEO, B&C Associates will be awarded the Charles Collins Award.




National Urban League ( Established in 1910, The Urban League is the nation's oldest and largest community-based movement devoted to empowering African Americans to enter the economic and social mainstream.  Today, the National Urban League (, headquartered in New York City, spearheads the non-partisan efforts of its local affiliates.  There are over 100 local affiliates of the National Urban League located in 36 states and the District of Columbia providing direct services like job training, home ownership and educational assistance to millions of people nationwide along with extensive advocacy and research.




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