A voter exits after casting her ballot at a polling place at Highland Colony Baptist Church, November 27, 2018, in Ridgeland, Mississippi. Voters in Mississippi head to the polls for today's special runoff election, where Democratic candidate for U.S. Senate Mike Espy is running in a close race with appointed Republican Senator Cindy Hyde-Smith (R-MS). (Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images)
**FILE** A voter exits after casting her ballot at a polling place at Highland Colony Baptist Church, November 27, 2018, in Ridgeland, Mississippi. Voters in Mississippi head to the polls for today's special runoff election, where Democratic candidate for U.S. Senate Mike Espy is running in a close race with appointed Republican Sen. Cindy Hyde-Smith (R-MS). (Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images)

With less than a month before the Nov. 3 presidential election, 10 publishers of the country’s leading Black newspapers will join forces for a livestreamed conversation regarding racial disparities and other issues aligned with voting rights in 2020.

The “Voting With a Purpose” livestream takes place at 6 p.m. Tuesday, Word in Black, the news collaborative behind the event, announced this week.

Chris Bennett, publisher of Seattle Medium, and Dr. Frances Toni Draper, CEO/publisher of the AFRO American newspapers, will serve as hosts. Elinor Tatum, publisher and editor-in-chief of the New York Amsterdam News, and Larry Lee, publisher of the Sacramento Observer, will serve as moderators.

“This moment requires greatness from our publications as the disparities and injustices are life-and-death,” Lee said. “Black lives have always mattered to us, and our publications matter to Blacks.”

The renowned panel of experts will include:

● Bakari Sellers, Attorney for Strom Law Firm and CNN political commentator

● Susan Smith Richardson, CEO, Center for Public Integrity

● Dr. Benjamin F. Chavis Jr., president and CEO, National Newspaper Publishers Association

● Kristen Clarke, president and executive director of the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law

● Wes Moore, CEO, Robin Hood Foundation

● Leigh M. Chapman, director, Voting Rights Program

● Nolan Williams Jr., American composer, producer, music director, innovator, curator and musicologist.

“We can’t wait for the world to meet Word in Black on Oct. 20,” said Nancy Lane, chief executive officer of the Local Media Association. “This group represents 10 of our nation’s leading Black publishers who are taking a major step forward to be the national voice of solutions for racial inequities in America. We are thrilled to serve as managers of this collaborative and financial sponsor of this event. We invite everyone to join us for this important discussion.”

WI Guest Author

This correspondent is a guest contributor to The Washington Informer.

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