CDU Hosts Impactful Empowerment Congress
The 31st Annual Empowerment Congress was held on CDU’s campus during Martin Luther King, Jr. weekend and attracted a powerful lineup of speakers and attendees for the gathering, all of whom braved torrential rains to attend the important summit. The theme of this year’s summit was “A Leadership Summit in Times of Civic Crisis – Hard Truths, Integrity, and Reconciliation.”
The 31st edition of the event featured a range of speakers followed by a selection of workshops that engaged constituents and stakeholders in critical conversations around inclusive leadership, financial empowerment, charter reform, and homelessness.
The Empowerment Congress is a broad-based and diverse constituency made up of community residents, representatives of the Neighborhood Councils and block clubs, social and human service organizations, academic and religious institutions, business interests, and individual citizens. Since its inception, the Empowerment Congress has convened an annual meeting of members, elected officials, community stakeholders, and other interested constituents to discuss the issues that directly affect the areas in which the Empowerment Congress does its work.
Over the years, the reach of the summit has expanded significantly, and continues to educate, engage, and empower the residents of South Los Angeles, as well as its neighboring cities and communities.
CDU President & CEO Dr. David Carlisle, took to the podium as host of the event to welcome guests to the campus and framed the goals of the day. Other speakers included Los Angeles City Attorney Hydee Feldstein Soto and Los Angeles County Sheriff Robert Luna. The Honorable Karen Bass, Mayor of Los Angeles was the event’s keynote speaker. The emcee was well-known radio and talk show host Tavis Smiley.
The Empowerment Congress is an ongoing effort in participatory government, founded on the principle that elected officials are most effective when the constituents they serve are actively involved in the decision-making process. The location of the annual gathering changes from year to year. CDU has played host to several of the previous events.