Effectiveness has to be the new buzzword

The recent elections in Atlanta and New Orleans are an indication of a trend which has been emerging for couple of decades.
It is no longer enough to be black to win an election in a mostly African-American jurisdiction.
Not only did Atlanta’s voters almost end the string of African-American mayors, but New Orleans voters did, after electing a Republican to Congress.
African-American elected officials will have to adjust to a new era of accountability, even if they pile up seniority with repeated electoral wins.
People are hurting too much, with a 16.5 percent unemployment rate, to just be pleased with having a role model who looks like them.
At the Innovation & Equity Symposium in San Francisco Jan. 15, selectees of the 50 Most Important African-Americans in Technology focused on that paramount issue of jobs and economic development by identifying hot fields where firms can be created and nurtured.
It is a long-overdue resource for African-American elected officials, who often have to rely on unresponsive staff, lobbyists and business interests for data to make important decisions.
Without the tools to effectively advocate for economic inclusion for their base constituents, their desires for change often fall short.
Two of our annual reports, Walls Come Tumbling Down: State of Black Business, sixth edition and Silicon Ceiling 9: Equal Opportunity and HIgh Technology give policy makers the benchmarks and policy options to make much better choices. They can be proactive in the use of stimulus funding and other state and federal funds rather than setling for leftovers at the end of the line.
Both reports can be ordered online in combination with a subscription to our weekly newsletter Innovation & Equity/
Over the next six months to National Black Business Month, it is our hope that all African-American elected officials will put tangible steps in place to create jobs for our communities.

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