Baltimore’s social and political terrain saw many dramatic shifts in 2017. The election of a new Mayor and Baltimore City Council, the implementation of the consent decree, the increased crime rate and a host of hot political issues have demanded that there be new & innovative approaches to solve our city’s problems. For LBS, this is why it is essential that we focus on the policy agenda for our communities.
We have never focused on what’s “trending”, but rather what can produce the most effective outcomes for the residents who live and work here. We started the year by successfully waging an intense battle against the multi-million dollar bail industry. I personally co-chaired the taskforce for the $12 million Children and Youth Fund where we are seeking more investment in local grassroots organizations and programs. With a tremendous amount of public support, we able to significantly weaken mandatory minimums bill proposed to the City Council for illegal handgun possession.
After our successful rebranding this year, we were also able to relaunch our Sustainer platform to make it easier for people to donate monthly contributions to LBS. This resulted in tripling our financial base of support and increased followers and subscribers on all of our communications platforms. As a result of our policy advocacy efforts, we were also featured in the 2017 HBO Documentary Film, “Baltimore Rising”, alongside our formers students Kwame Rose and Makayla Gilliam-Price. Our flagship youth development program, the Eddie Conway Liberation Institute (ECLI) experienced more success by focusing heavily on training local students in advocacy and organizing.ECLI also received financial support and national acclaim from former NFL quarterback – Colin Kaepernick.
2017 has been an amazing year of growth and prosperity for LBS. Thank you so much for your political, financial and emotional support of Baltimore’s Grassroots Thinktank!
Adam J. Jackson
Chief Exective Officer
Leaders of a Beautiful Struggle