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New Leaders Council

Heroes at Villains

**Tickets will be available at the door for $40**

 Each year, New Leaders Council Los Angeles recognizes progressive leaders in the city who do amazing work advocating for progressive change in fields like education, entertainment, public sector unions, non-profit management, law, medicine, and business. For us at New Leaders Council Los Angeles we believe progressives do things like close the income gap, work alongside communities traditionally marginalized, empower people with rights, and believe all kids will learn. Sometimes these heroes are well-known, but often they are unsung leaders doing the work so important to making LA great. Help us honor these heroes creating the change we need to make LA a more progressive place. Join us as we celebrate the winners on Nov. 7, 2014 from 6pm-8pm at Villains Tavern located in the arts district of downtown LA. See below to learn more about our winners.

Bobby Kennedy III, Writer/Filmmaker/Actor

BobbyKennedyIII_pic.jpgBobby Kennedy III got his start in the film business by producing short documentaries for environmental groups.

After graduating from Brown University he fled to Italy and three years later shot his first comedy film Eurotrapped--now on Netflix.

He's currently editing a documentary about jazz pianist Eric Lewis and developing a film about Hunter Thompson's 1970 campaign for Sheriff of Aspen.


Marqueece Harris-Dawson, President/CEO - Community Coalition

MHD.jpgMarqueece Harris-Dawson was born and raised in South Los Angeles, until the early 1980s when he was uprooted. With the onset of theCrack Cocaine epidemic, his parents moved him and his younger brother out of the neighborhood as gang and police violence skyrocketed. Crestfallen to be torn away from “the village”, Marqueece made it his life’s work to make sure no other family feels it has to move out of South Los Angeles to keep their children safe.

Never forgetting his calling, he returned to South Los Angeles just after his time at Morehouse College to work in the family Real Estate business. Here he acquired a working knowledge of neighborhoods, and the challenges presented by widespread joblessness, poverty, poor public services,and a decaying housing stock.

In 1995, he joined Community Coalition under then founder and current Congresswoman Karen Bass. His first campaign publicized the horrendous conditions of inner city high schools and the inequities in the distribution of public funding. It resulted in an unprecedented $153 million for school repair and modernization in South LA schools.

His efforts were heralded by Oprah Winfrey and as the first successful effort to include equity a key determinate in the dissemination of public school funds. It set the basis for winning universal access to college prep classes as well as reforms to end discriminatory targeting African American and Latino students with the harshest disciplinary remedies.

He galvanized South LA families to address public safety in the most humane and effective way possible, working with law enforcement agencies,city leaders, local residents and businesses to reduce crime and violence by transforming neighborhood parks, and decreasing nuisance business activity that foster crime. Marqueece was also coordinator for Mark Ridley-Thomas’ 1999re-election campaign in which garnered over 87% of the vote.

Serving as the President and CEO of Community Coalition since 2004, his leadership grew the organization’s influence, size and financial standing. While doubling the budget and staff, he also led a capital campaign to acquire Community Coalition’s headquarters on Vermont Avenue.

Marqueece has been recognized with numerous community commendations, recognitions and awards including the coveted Do Something “BRICK” Award, The Wellness Foundation Sabbatical Award, the NAACP Man of Valor Award, Durfee Foundation’s Stanton Fellowship and Liberty Hill Foundation’s Upton Sinclair Award. He holds a certificate in non-profit management from Stanford’s Graduate School of Business and is an Aspen Institute Pahara Fellow.

Marqueece and his wife Karrie are proud homeowners in South Los Angeles. They strongly believe in the community’s power to create a better tomorrow when we pull together and work hard. Join him in creating a stronger South Los Angeles for all.


Claudia Peña, Statewide Director - California Civil Rights Coalition/Staff Attorney - MALDEF

claudia_pena.jpgClaudia Peña of San Francisco is the Statewide Director of the California Civil Rights Coalition (CCRC) and on the staff of MALDEF, the Latino legal voice for civil rights in America.

Prior to directing CCRC, she served as the third Judge Constance Baker Motley Civil Rights Fellow at Equal Justice Society, a civil rights organization working on transforming the nation’s consciousness on race through the law, social science and the arts. Before she dedicated herself to domestic civil rights law, Peña worked on international human rights, specifically focusing on asylum and refugee issues. She worked at Johannesburg, South Africa-based Lawyers for Human Rights and Badil Center for Refugee Rights in Bethlehem, Palestine. She has been an activist, advocate, organizer for 17 years and recently co-founded Repair, an organization that engages education and advocacy around issues of health, race, class and gender stemming from exploitation and/or severe inequity. She lives in East Hollywood and loves Tae Kwon Do, the beautiful game AKA futbol and community-building of any kind.

Peña received her B.A. in Sociology from Mills College in Oakland and her J.D. from UCLA.

November 11, 2014 at 12pm - 2pm
Villains Tavern
1356 Palmetto St
Los Angeles, CA 90013
United States
Google map and directions
Eric Desobe ·
Natalie Metzger Adriana Serrano Francisco Jaguar Mora Anjuli Kronheim Katz Brittany Ballard Julia Bailey Johnson Irving Pacheco John Crye Mercedes A Mantilla George Yin Travis Sentell Aixle Aman Eric Greene Megan Sette Khi-Min Jung Guianna Henriquez ana victorino Nico Espiritu Denise Marie Silva James Snaza Erik A. Fonseca Unai Montes-Irueste Miriam Burbano Vinicio Caizachana Alvarez Cindy Carlos Ashley Flora Arax Ryan Hughes Vanessa M. Macias Clinton Schaff Komal Mehta Shirley Shirles Giraldo Keith Kamisugi Jasleen Kohli Priscilla Ocen Steven Sc Aida Susie Macedo

How many tickets would you like to purchase?

$40.00 General Admission
At the door

$30.00 General Admission
Includes admission + 1 drink

$20.00 Discounted Institute Applicant Special
Special for prospective fellows that have completed their applications

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