Michael Blake announced that he was leaving The White House and his latest Public Liaison position of promoting the Obama Administration's efforts to address issues that have positively impacting the Black community. I first met Michael Blake representing Black Wall Street Chicago and The National Black Wall Street USA when I was one of the national community organizers for Rev. Al Sharpton's National Action Network's "Measuring The Movement" National Convention. I Introduced myself as a veteran activist and one who was one of the first to work with President Obama as a Chicago community organizer and offered myself to network with him. I ran into him again when he started his White House Black Town Hall Meetings promoting the president's agenda as it has related to Black people. (whitehouse.gov/africanamericans)
When Michael Blake came to Chicago and addressed over 400 people at the historic southside Fellowship church, he introduced to the Black public a new website from The White House that specifically addressed administration policies that have benefited Black constituencies communities and I must admit like others did that as I read the information coming from the website, my first response was mostly "I did not know that." As people expressed concern about how Black could keep his public commitments Michael Blake announced that his outreach office designed to promote this Black agenda was staffed ONLY by him and one intern. I told him then that with the demands on him that there was NO WAY he could be successful, but his passion and energy was certainly admirable.
Many Black community organizers I knew that had met Blake and getting used to their establishing communication with him and his office have felt a major blow because to them they had not been used to having the kind of direct rapport that Blake extended and who they knew directly had the ear of The President, and specifically through Valerie Jarrett, Obama Senior Advisor.
Well I would have agreed that Blake leaving The White House was going to be a blow to those relationships and Black community outreach efforts to get those disconnected Black constituencies connected and re-connected to those White House entities designed to benefit Black constituencies.
There may be hope to those Black outreach efforts started by Blake as I read further into his departing announcement where Blake says that he is on to his next challenge "in Chicago". Now what kind of challenge could Blake find in Chicago as one who showed so much talent and passion for President Obama and his Black agenda?
Well I would like to read into Blake's "next Chicago challenge" as the opening to take all the passion he brought to his White House position and translate that into a much needed key Black Grassroots Community Outreach Coordinator position for the Obama 2012 Re-election Campaign. It takes someone with the passion, commitment and rapport that Blake brings to continue his allegience to Obama by taking up that needed Black outreach role in the Obama 2012 Re-election Campaign.
Now I havent talked directly to Blake in several months so I have no personal clue to what his exact plans may be, but I can see the absolute void that still exists with The Obama Re-election Campaign and just how many grassroots community organizers and constituencies that are still not connected in any way to the reelection campaign and it will take a person like Blake who knows how to reach these constituencies to assume this kind of leadership role. The Obama 2012 Reelection Campaign needs a Michael Blake in the streets of Chicago much much more than the suites of The White House.
So while Michael Blake and his one intern office at The White House may be changing, but I suspect that Michael Blake's new Chicago challenge will be leading the Black voter outreach efforts from the Obama Reelection headquarters in Chicago and next time you see Blake, her will certainly be armed with more a single intern helping him with the latest Black constituency outreach efforts on behalf of President Barack Obama.