By Lynn Jones – The Republican National Committee (RNC) is serious about Black voter engagement. This Black History month the RNC is running a 5- figure ad buy with the Black press which includes a commercial that will begin running next week on Black News Channel. In addition to that, the RNC has also made a 2 million dollar investment into opening community centers in the Black community. RNC Black American Community Centers are currently open in College Park, Georgia, Cleveland, Ohio and , Milwaukee, Wisconsin. The centers that are scheduled to open soon are Jacksonville, Florida, Greensboro, North Carolina, and Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The RNC is opening these centers earlier than ever to ensure Republicans continue to make inroads with minority voters and to strategic minority engagement efforts in communities around the nation.
At the helm is RNC spokesperson Paris Dennard. Born in Cordell, Georgia and raised in Phoenix, Arizona; growing up Dennard was very astute in his leadership abilities to get the job done. His grandfather and parents instilled in him values and morals that paved the way for his current position as Republican National Committee (RNC) national spokesperson. As a teen, Dennard was on the front line in student government leadership roles and eventually volunteered with the local GOP youth council and the rest is history. “Although I didn’t know the Republican Party history at the time, they just lined up with my values,” said Dennard. There was one caveat from his grandfather, ‘don’t tell your grandmother.’ At age 39, Dennard is now in a national leadership position ensuring that African Americans in the GOP are not overlooked.
Recently Republican trailblazer Winsome Sears defied the odds to become the first Black woman elected to serve as Virginia’s Lieutenant Governor highlighting the growth and diversity of the GOP at all levels. “We have to highlight these republican leaders for their historic wins for the culture,” said Dennard. According to Dennard these individuals have unique stories and are proud of their history in this country. Dennard relates the historic wins to the RNC candidate’s tenacity and willingness to relate to voters in every neighborhood. Dennard remarked, “Many of the wins were overshadowed by mainstream media and curators of the news.” The main goal Dennard has on his plate is to formulate that African-Americans are educated on all levels and should not be demonized for their affiliation, while pitting the masses against each other when the common goal is to heal a nation and let voters have a choice. “I was raised to not rely on the government to raise you nor to fund you,” said Dennard. “Travelling through many circles is the untrue fact that if you are a republican you are a sellout, which is unfounded and untrue.” One thing for sure Dennard articulates a true fact ‘the Republican Party is black history.’