Neither the coronavirus nor social distancing prevented hundreds of Howard University alumni from hosting a virtual fundraiser for vice presidential candidate and Sen. Kamala Harris (D-Calif.) Saturday night, just 52 days before the Nov. 3 elections where she and Joe Biden hope to send President Donald Trump and Mike Pence into retirement.
Absent food, drink and the other trappings of a fundraiser, the event had passion as Harris was greeted and honored by former classmates, friends and sorority sisters from her Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority as well as members of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority.
“I am so touched by this event…You have been so incredible in your support of me,” said Harris during the Zoom event where she went from talking about her vision for the country to thanking her AKA sorority sisters, classmates and friends D.C. lawyer Lita Rosario, who she said, “dragged me to be on the debate team,” team at Howard.
The virtual fund-raiser was organized by a group of Howard University alumni who called themselves Bison 2020 and they included Rosario, Boxing promoter Rock Newman, lawyers Donald Temple and A. Scott Bolden and Lita Rosario and her godson Kristopher Ernst, who introduced Harris.
“Money is what helps to propel campaign trains forward and we said why don’t we try to do a fund-raiser for her so we got busy,” said Newman, who enlisted help from Dr. Cherie Ward and the students from the Jim Vance Media Academy at Archbishop John Carroll. “This event should the beauty of bridging us old heads and young people who have something to say.’
From shooting stand-ups and editing music to doing research and creating special effects, Ward said, “This has been a valuable opportunity for our students because they were able to have a hands-on, real-world experience in real time and always say movie-making in real time is the best experience that can be offered.”
The event began with members of the Howard family observing a moment of silence in honor the late actor and alum Chadwick Boseman, star of the movie Black Panther. The Carroll students produced a special tribute to Boseman and throughout the event Howard alumni, noted recording artists and invited guests had plenty to say,
“This is an epic event at a very serious time,” said Temple. “Howard is in a major historical space. We are connected by virtue of a candidate and we are now involved at a time when the nation needs to hear from this community.”
Rosario said Biden’s selection of Harris is a seminal moment. “Her being on the ticket is really making a difference in bringing out the African American vote, the female vote and the progressive vote.”
Michelle Bernard, a member of the Howard University class of 1985, hosted the event. Bernard, who is a close friend to Harris, began by saying, “This is the most important election of a lifetime,” and her comments was followed by Howard alumni from across the country that they are supporting Harris with their deeds and their dollars.