Monetizing Your Personal Brand: CAECAY Empowering Student Athletes, Entertainers, Celebrities, and Influencers with NIL Expertise

Monetizing Your Personal Brand: Empowering Student Athletes and Entertainers with CAECAY’s 50 Years of Expertise in NIL

In today’s digital age, the power of personal branding has never been more apparent. For student athletes, entertainers, celebrities, and influencers, the ability to monetize their Name, Image, and Likeness (NIL) has become a game-changer. Thanks to the NCAA’s recent policy change allowing college student athletes to profit from their NIL, a world of opportunities has opened up. Leading the way in this transformative landscape is the Congress of Athletes Entertainers and Celebrities Creating Alternatives for Youths (CAECAY). With over 50 years of experience and a commitment to empowering individuals, CAECAY, in collaboration with esteemed organizations and personalities like the Aaron & Margaret Wallace Foundation, AMWF, Abdul-Jalil al-Hakim, Superstar Management, Ex-why AdVentures, and Nowtruth, is poised to revolutionize the world of NIL monetization.

Advertising Campaign: “Unlock Your Potential with CAECAY’s NIL Monetization Program”

Campaign Objective:
To raise awareness among student athletes, entertainers, celebrities, and influencers about the Congress of Athletes Entertainers and Celebrities Creating Alternatives for Youths (CAECAY) and its NIL Monetization Program. The campaign aims to showcase the opportunities available through monetizing Name, Image, and Likeness (NIL) and encourage individuals to leverage their personal brand for financial success.

Campaign Slogan:
“Embrace Your Power. Monetize Your Influence. Join CAECAY’s NIL Revolution!”

Target Audience:
Student Athletes, Entertainers, Celebrities, and Influencers seeking to monetize their NIL and earn income from their personal brand.
Athletes, Entertainers, Celebrities, and Influencers looking to expand their revenue streams and maximize their reach.
Coaches, mentors, and industry professionals who support and guide athletes, entertainers, celebrities, and influencers.

Campaign Elements:
Motion Picture, Television, Video, Radio, Audio, Print Commercial/Ads, Social Media, Podcast, Blog/Vlog, Web Ads:
Create visually captivating and inspiring commercial ads that highlight the success stories of athletes, entertainers, and influencers who have benefited from CAECAY’s NIL Monetization Program. Showcase the various avenues of income generation, such as autograph signings, coaching lessons/clinics, social media endorsements, and appearances at restaurants or events.

Digital Advertisements:
Develop engaging digital ads for social media platforms, websites, and mobile apps. These ads will:
Feature compelling visuals and persuasive messaging to capture attention and generate interest.
Highlight the financial opportunities available through NIL monetization and CAECAY’s expertise in the field.
Direct viewers to the CAECAY website or dedicated landing page for more information and enrollment.

Influencer Collaborations:
Partner with influential athletes, entertainers, celebrities, and social media influencers who have successfully monetized their NIL. They will serve as brand ambassadors and share their experiences, insights, and endorsement of CAECAY’s NIL Monetization Program through:
Sponsored social media posts and stories.
Live streams or recorded videos discussing the benefits of NIL monetization and CAECAY’s support.
Collaborative content, such as Q&A sessions or exclusive interviews, showcasing their journey and financial success.

Educational Webinars and Workshops:
Organize informative webinars and workshops led by industry experts and professionals from CAECAY. These sessions will cover topics like:
Understanding the legal aspects and guidelines of NIL monetization.
Building and managing a personal brand for maximum impact.
Social media strategies to enhance engagement and attract sponsorships.
Financial planning and wealth management for long-term success.
Contract negotiations and endorsement opportunities.

PR and Media Outreach:
Engage with media outlets, sports networks, and entertainment platforms to share the success stories of individuals who have thrived through CAECAY’s NIL Monetization Program. Provide press releases, interviews, and media kits highlighting the transformative experiences and financial gains achieved by program participants.

Campus Activations and Events:
Organize interactive events and activations on college campuses, sports venues, and entertainment hubs. These activities may include:
Panel discussions featuring industry experts, successful athletes, entertainers, and influencers sharing their NIL monetization journey.
Autograph signings, meet-and-greets, or mini-clinics conducted by prominent athletes or entertainers.
Competitions or challenges encouraging students to showcase their talent and entrepreneurial spirit.
Sponsorship of sporting events or concerts, leveraging CAECAY’s presence to connect with the target audience.

Measurement and Evaluation:
Track website traffic, click-through rates, and conversions from digital advertisements.
Monitor social media analytics to assess reach, engagement, and audience sentiment.
Measure the number of enrollments and inquiries received through the campaign period.
Conduct surveys and feedback sessions to gauge awareness, perception, and satisfaction among the target audience.
Monitor media coverage, including press mentions, interviews, and features, to evaluate campaign reach and impact.

CAECAY recognizes that student athletes and entertainers possess unique talents and personal brands that can be harnessed for financial gain. Through their comprehensive program, they equip individuals with the knowledge, tools, and support necessary to leverage their NIL effectively. Whether it’s signing autographs, coaching lessons and clinics, social media endorsements, or appearances at restaurants and events, CAECAY’s program provides the guidance needed to maximize earning potential. Their expertise and proven track record make them an invaluable resource for those seeking to monetize their personal brand.

Empowering Through Education:
One of CAECAY’s core principles is education. They understand the importance of equipping student athletes and entertainers with the skills and knowledge required to navigate the complexities of NIL monetization. Through their partnership with industry experts and professionals, CAECAY offers educational webinars and workshops that cover a wide range of topics. From legal aspects and guidelines surrounding NIL monetization to building and managing a personal brand, participants gain valuable insights and practical strategies for success. CAECAY’s dedication to empowering individuals through education sets them apart as a leader in the field.

A Network of Support:
CAECAY’s network of influential organizations and personalities provides participants with unparalleled opportunities for growth and collaboration. The Aaron & Margaret Wallace Foundation, AMWF, Abdul-Jalil al-Hakim, Superstar Management, Ex-why AdVentures, and Nowtruth bring their expertise, connections, and resources to the table, ensuring participants receive the support they need to thrive. With their guidance, individuals can navigate the intricacies of contract negotiations, endorsement deals, and wealth management, fostering long-term success in their careers.

Creating Alternatives for Youths:
Beyond the individual benefits, CAECAY’s mission extends to creating alternatives for youths. By empowering student athletes and entertainers to monetize their NIL, CAECAY generates opportunities that not only shape their own futures but also provide inspiration and pathways for aspiring young talents. Through mentorship programs, community engagements, and outreach initiatives, CAECAY strives to make a positive impact on the lives of young individuals, creating a ripple effect that reaches far beyond the realm of sports and entertainment.

As the landscape of collegiate sports and entertainment continues to evolve, CAECAY stands at the forefront, offering a comprehensive program that unlocks the financial potential of student athletes and entertainers through NIL monetization.
Through an integrated advertising campaign encompassing television commercials, digital advertisements, influencer collaborations, educational webinars, PR outreach, and campus activations, CAECAY aims to empower student athletes, entertainers, celebrities, and influencers to monetize their NIL. By showcasing success stories, providing educational resources, and fostering strategic partnerships, the campaign will drive awareness and engagement, positioning CAECAY as a trusted partner in unlocking financial opportunities through NIL monetization.
With their 50 years of experience, partnerships with influential organizations and personalities, and dedication to education and empowerment, CAECAY is paving the way for a new era of financial opportunities. By joining forces with the Aaron & Margaret Wallace Foundation, AMWF, Abdul-Jalil al-Hakim, Superstar Management, Ex-why AdVentures, and Nowtruth, CAECAY creates a formidable alliance that is set to revolutionize the world of NIL. Together, they provide the guidance, resources, and support needed for individuals to maximize their personal brand and create a prosperous future.

CAECAY Maximizing Athletes, Entertainers, Celebrities, and Influencers Brand Potential

Title: Maximizing Athlete’s Brand Potential: A Marketing Plan for the Congress of Athletes Entertainers and Celebrities Creating Alternatives for Youths (CAECAY)
In today’s evolving landscape of sports and entertainment, the ability for college student athletes to monetize their Name, Image and Likeness (NIL) has opened up unprecedented opportunities. The Congress of Athletes Entertainers and Celebrities Creating Alternatives for Youths (CAECAY), in collaboration with the Aaron & Margaret Wallace Foundation (AMWF), Abdul-Jalil al-Hakim,, Superstar Management, Ex-why AdVentures,,, and Nowtruth, aims to leverage their collective 50 years of experience to support athletes, entertainers, celebrities, and influencers in maximizing their earning potential through NIL initiatives. CAECAY and its affiliated platforms are established as industry leaders in assisting athletes, entertainers, celebrities, and influencers in monetizing their NIL. This marketing plan outlines strategies to effectively promote and harness the power of NIL for these individuals.
Educate and guide student athletes on the benefits, legalities, and best practices of NIL monetization.
Facilitate brand partnerships and endorsement opportunities for athletes and influencers.
Generate awareness and engagement through targeted marketing campaigns.
Drive revenue growth for individuals involved in the program.
Target Audience:
College student athletes looking to monetize their personal brand through NIL initiatives.
Brands and businesses seeking authentic partnerships with athletes and influencers.
Sports enthusiasts and fans interested in engaging with their favorite athletes on a more personal level.
Marketing Strategies:
a) Establish an Online Presence:
Develop a comprehensive website (e.g., as a central hub for information, resources, and success stories related to NIL monetization.
Optimize the website for search engines to enhance visibility and organic traffic.
Create engaging content, including articles, blog posts, and videos, highlighting the benefits and success stories of athletes who have monetized their NIL.

b) Educational Programs and Workshops:
Organize workshops, webinars, and seminars to educate student athletes on the nuances of NIL monetization, including legal considerations, branding strategies, and contract negotiations.
Collaborate with universities, sports organizations, and player associations to deliver comprehensive educational programs.

c) Athlete Representation and Management:
Offer professional representation and management services to athletes and influencers seeking to monetize their NIL.
Provide guidance in brand development, contract negotiations, and endorsement opportunities.
Foster relationships with industry experts, including lawyers, marketers, and financial advisors, to offer comprehensive support to clients.

d) Brand Partnerships and Endorsements:
Identify and connect athletes and influencers with suitable brand partnerships and endorsement opportunities.
Develop a database of brands interested in collaborating with athletes and influencers to promote their products or services.
Leverage AMWF’s online platform,, to facilitate connections between athletes, influencers, and brands.

e) Social Media and Digital Campaigns:
Utilize social media platforms to amplify the reach and engagement of athletes and influencers.
Create compelling content showcasing athletes’ personal stories, training routines, and community involvement.
Implement targeted advertising campaigns to reach specific demographics and increase brand visibility.
Measurement and Evaluation:
Track and analyze key performance indicators (KPIs) such as website traffic, social media engagement, brand partnerships secured, and revenue generated through NIL initiatives.
Conduct regular surveys and feedback sessions to gather insights from athletes, influencers, and brand partners.
Use analytics tools to monitor the effectiveness of marketing campaigns and make data-driven adjustments.
Budget Allocation:
Allocate a budget for website development and maintenance, content creation, social media advertising, event organization, and educational programs.
Regularly review and optimize the budget based on the effectiveness of each initiative.
With the recent changes allowing college student athletes to monetize their NIL, there is a significant opportunity for CAECAY, AMWF, Abdul-Jalil al-Hakim, and their affiliated platforms to provide guidance and support to athletes, entertainers, celebrities, and influencers. By implementing a strategic marketing plan that focuses on establishing an online presence, delivering educational programs, facilitating brand partnerships, and leveraging digital campaigns, CAECAY can help maximize the earning potential of individuals in the NIL era. This approach will not only empower athletes and influencers but also create mutually beneficial relationships with brands and enhance fan engagement.

Leveraging 50 Years of Experience for Athletes, Entertainers, Celebrities, and Influencers in the NIL Era

Leveraging 50 Years of Experience for Athletes, Entertainers, Celebrities, and Influencers in the NIL Era

The Congress of Athletes Entertainers and Celebrities Creating Alternatives for Youths (CAECAY), in partnership with the Aaron & Margaret Wallace Foundation (AMWF) and its online platform, Abdul-Jalil al-Hakim,, Superstar Management, Ex-why AdVentures,,, and Nowtruth marketing plan outlines strategies to capitalize on the 50 years of experience and expertise with the objective to harness the influence of athletes, entertainers, celebrities, and influencers to maximize their earning potential in the new era of Name, image and likeness (NIL) monetization for college student athletes.

The recent change in NCAA regulations allows college student athletes to monetize their personal brand and NIL. This presents a significant opportunity to leverage the extensive experience and networks of CAECAY, AMWF, Abdul-Jalil al-Hakim, Superstar Management, Ex-why AdVentures, Nowtruth and their affiliated platforms to support student athletes in maximizing their earning potential.

Target Audience:
The primary target audience for this marketing plan includes:

College student athletes seeking to monetize their NIL
Brands, businesses, and organizations interested in partnering with student athletes for promotional activities
Fans, followers, and supporters of student athletes looking to engage with their favorite athletes on a more personal level

Marketing Strategies:
a) Establish a Comprehensive Online Presence:
Create a dedicated website (e.g., as a central hub to showcase the services, expertise, and success stories of CAECAY, AMWF, Abdul-Jalil al-Hakim, Superstar Management, Ex-why AdVentures, Nowtruth and other affiliated entities.
Develop engaging content, including blog posts, articles, and case studies, highlighting the benefits and potential of NIL monetization.
Leverage social media platforms to connect with target audiences, share educational content, and promote success stories.

Educational Outreach and Workshops:
Organize seminars, workshops, and webinars targeting student athletes, educating them on the opportunities, legalities, and best practices of NIL monetization.
Collaborate with universities, sports organizations, and student athlete associations to conduct comprehensive training sessions.

Athlete Representation and Management:
Offer professional representation and management services to student athletes, providing guidance in branding, contract negotiations, and endorsements.
Develop a network of industry experts, including lawyers, marketing professionals, and financial advisors, to provide holistic support.

Brand Partnerships and Sponsorships:
Identify and connect student athletes with suitable brand partnerships and sponsorships that align with their personal brand and values.
Facilitate collaborations through AMWF’s online platform,, connecting brands and student athletes for promotional opportunities.

Events and Experiential Marketing:
Organize and promote live events, autograph signings, coaching clinics, and appearances featuring student athletes to engage fans and generate revenue.
Collaborate with local businesses, restaurants, and venues to create unique experiences centered around student athletes.
Promotion and Advertising:

Digital Marketing:
Utilize targeted online advertising campaigns to reach student athletes, sports enthusiasts, and potential brand partners.
Implement search engine optimization (SEO) strategies to increase the visibility and ranking of the dedicated NIL-focused website.

Influencer Marketing:
Leverage the influence and reach of established athletes, entertainers, celebrities, and social media influencers to promote the benefits of NIL monetization.
Encourage testimonials and endorsements from successful student athletes who have benefitted from NIL opportunities.

Media Relations:
Develop strategic partnerships with media outlets, sports publications, and online platforms to amplify the message and generate positive press coverage.
Provide media outlets with exclusive access to success stories and case studies to highlight the effectiveness of the NIL monetization strategies.

Measurement and Evaluation:
Regularly assess the effectiveness of marketing efforts by monitoring key performance indicators (KPIs) such as website traffic, engagement metrics, lead generation, brand partnerships secured, and revenue generated for student athletes.

Allocate a sufficient budget for digital marketing campaigns, event organization, content creation, and strategic partnerships. Regularly review and optimize the budget allocation based on the effectiveness of each initiative.

By leveraging the 50 years of experience of CAECAY, AMWF, Abdul-Jalil al-Hakim, Superstar Management, Ex-why AdVentures, Nowtruth and their affiliated platforms, this marketing plan aims to position them as industry leaders in helping student athletes monetize their NIL. Through comprehensive online presence, educational outreach, athlete representation, brand partnerships, and targeted promotions, the plan seeks to empower student athletes and drive success in the new era of NIL monetization.

Dreams Money Can Buy: LSU’s NIL-powered Superteam is exactly what college sports needs

The Bayou’s budding Superteam is great for college sports.

From a fairness standpoint, the NIL era has been beautiful for the college athlete. No longer do they have to sacrifice their bodies with little to nothing in return other than the expectation for them to be grateful because they now have a “free” education.

From an entertainment standpoint, the influx of NIL contracts has led to an inflation in “stardom.” When a lineman at a mid-major can have his agent negotiate a burrito deal for him, it becomes hard to decipher who the real stars are. If a program inks a player to a 6 figure-plus deal, it’s in the school’s interest to push them to the forefront despite their true impact on winning.

Ironically, the clarity college sports is seeking can be found in the muddy waters of the Mississippi.

The legend of Angel Reese is just getting started. Fresh off LSU’s national championship win and her boastful post-game actions, the budding star has quickly become a hot commodity in the NIL world.

Kim Mulkey and the LSU Tigers have conducted a crash-course in how to effectively utilize NIL money. Instead of using the cash to boost players with potential, hoping they pan out, Mulkey and the Tigers have operated the last two offseasons like a professional front office. To build 2023’s National Championship team, they grabbed a proven star in Angel Reese from Maryland and surrounded her with experienced role players out of the portal, some of whom played for Mulkey’s Baylor teams or were recruited by her in high school.

Reese’s polarizing personality — at its brightest in the runaway National Championship win over Iowa and Caitlyn Clark — and capable skills on the court pushed her past the pack of college players who have been tagged with the “star” label into a lane of her own now. And while the majority of collegiate impact players are leagues behind their professional counterparts when it comes to notoriety, it can be argued that the “Bayou Barbie” is now the biggest name in all of women’s basketball. That’s real superstardom.

The story could end here (don’t worry, it doesn’t). With a true star like Reese returning and a bubbling second option in Flau’jae “Big 4” Johnson, Mulkey’s Tigers looked poised to once again compete with South Carolina, Iowa and the top of women’s basketball for another National Championship.

Yet, like any good professional general manager, Mulkey didn’t waste an opportunity to get better just because she had stable pieces.

Instead, Mulkey hitched up the F-150, backed her boat into the banks of the Transfer Portal and went fishing. Unlike last year, she wasn’t just looking for role pieces that complement her star forward. This time, she was looking to reel in the big catfish. The ones that break records, not just supply a fry. And, boy did her catch tip the scales this offseason.

LSU walked away from the portal with commitments from Louisville’s top guard Hailey Van Lith — who 247Sports’ expert contributor Brandon Clay had pegged as the No. 2 player in the women basketball transfer portal. The Tigers didn’t stop there. They also hauled in Clay’s No. 1 player in the portal, DePaul forward Aneesah Morrow.

This gives LSU a potential starting line up that contains Van Lith, Big 4, Morrow and the Bayou Barbie. For fans who don’t get how pivotal this is, it’s basically the equivalent of a Cash Money Hot Boys track. No matter where you turn, there’s either an experienced spitter waiting in the wings or a young, hungry rapper on the attack. The beat (or opposing defense in this case) has no chance to relax.

The Bayou’s budding superteam is great for college sports in general. Not only does it bring light to women’s sports, but each member of this quartet brings a unique approach to the game that any fan can get behind.

Van Lith is a Kobe disciple. She trained with the Mamba in high school and it shows with her explosive offensive game and aggressive scoring. She embraces all the things fans loved about Bean, but this also comes with an attitude that can rub some of the “basketball purists” the wrong way.

Now, if you’re into a do-it-all, “blue collar” star, then look no further than All-American Aneesah Morrow. The DePaul standout averaged 25.7 points and 12.2 rebounds per game last season with an outstanding usage rate. She’s able to initiate the offense while also doing the dirty work.

As for Big 4 (Flau’jae “Big 4” Johnson, if you forgot): her development and production will be a bit of a question mark given that she’ll have to defer the ball to more experienced players. But what isn’t unknown is her ability to find a spark. She’s shown countless times during LSU’s title run that she’s capable of getting hot in a hurry. This will put stress on opposing defenses as they try to limit Van Lith, Morrow and Reese just to get torched by Johnson. It will also continue to make her a fan-favorite as her dagger shots will likely come in high demand.

Angel Reese speaks for herself. Like Morrow, she’s willing to do whatever it takes to win but has the boisterous personality that will intrigue fans who are into the style points (I’m part of this demographic, myself). Similar to Van Lith, Reese doesn’t back down from a chance to challenge the moment, so it’s hard to say that her on-court personality isn’t warranted.

Outside of their on-court production, the fact that nothing seemed forced or constructed will make LSU’s pending superteam a crossover hit. They aren’t painting disses to their opponents on their fingernails or turning their name into condiments. They’re genuinely themselves at all times and refuse to step outside of their personalities. It just so happens that their natural personas seem to balance each other and that realness resonates with fans.

As tenacious as Van Lith comes off, it still doesn’t seem like a “tough guy (or girl)” act. As for Reese, she didn’t just put on this personality once she started winning at LSU. That’s just the first time you guys started paying attention to her. But if you cared to do research, you can find videos of her at Saint Frances Academy in Baltimore antagonizing and dominating her opponents the same way she did during the title game.

Although Morrow’s hard work, no-nonsense approach to the game balances the scale that’s leaning Reese and Van Lith’s way, it isn’t fake humility. She built herself into one of the best players in the game at DePaul without the glitz and glamor of a major program. DePaul head coach Doug Bruno details how Morrow sets goals for herself before every game only to shatter them during the contest.

“Aneesah talks about goals,” Bruno said. “She’s got individual goals for every game and individual goals for the season. She’s got individual goals for when she graduates from DePaul. But to reach those goals, she has to keep getting better.”

It’s hard to hate on someone who leaves no stone unturned when perfecting their craft, even though they’re already near the top. This only further proves to spectators that she deserves the NIL boost and to finally take her spot on the big stage.

For Johnson, she’s not an athlete with an affinity for rapping who releases cringe-worthy freestyles just because they have access to a professional studio. No. She’s a real recording artist who has a distribution deal with Jay-Z’s Roc Nation record label. Johnson dedicates time to her craft in the booth and on the court with aspirations of starting her own record label in the future. As a result, it’s easy to accept her raps as part of her personality. Fans can get behind her “Big 4” persona because they know it’s naturally her and not something she’s doing as a gimmick.

This collective of real stars will do wonders for college sports, but it will definitely spell out trouble for the WNBA. Reese, the hottest name in the sport, has said on several occasions that she doesn’t even think about going pro. And why would she?

While the world has been belting out the opening line of NBA YoungBoy’s “Fresh Prince of Utah,” Reese really did bring a parade to the rapper’s hometown where she’s treated (and compensated) like a superstar, making over $1 million in NIL money. She’s going to grace Sports Illustrated’s “Swimsuit Edition”, flies in chartered jets to LSU away games with her teammates, frequently goes on elaborate shopping sprees that she documents on social media and just bought herself a new Mercedes. What more could a 21-year-old want?

In comparison, A’ja Wilson (two-time WNBA MVP, a WNBA Defensive Player of the Year and a WNBA champion) is set to make $202,115 in the 2023-24 season. Candace Parker, a sure-fire, first ballot Hall of Fame player, told the media that her decision to team up with Wilson on the Aces was partly fueled by the team’s new facilities. Parker explained that at no point in her illustrious career did she have a locker to call her own until Las Vegas built its new arena.

That puts Reese in the rare space where her personal brand would be taking a step back if she chooses to go pro. The same can be said for Van Lith, who is reportedly making over $500,000 in NIL and Johnson, who is set to pocket a little under $1 million herself this year. The WNBA will need to scramble to find ways to bridge the pay gap between its salaries and NIL if it wants to compete for these real college superstars and the future players who will undoubtedly follow their financial footprints.

Fortunately for the WNBA (and college sports fans), Reese and Van Lith don’t have to cross that bridge for at least another year. Because right now, Mulkey and Co. are solely focused on actualizing the potential of this superteam by bringing home another banner to the Bayou.

LSU’s Angel Reese Dominating NIL Space, Agrees to Deal With SI Swimsuit
Reese has become one of the most marketable athletes, signs another noteworthy deal.

All-American forward Angel Reese continues maximizing her opportunities in the NIL space after entering an agreement to be featured in this year’s Sports Illustrated Swimsuit edition. The LSU star will be accompanied by fellow Tiger Livvy Dunne as the only two college athletes in the magazine.

“Angel entered into a standard agreement with SI Swimsuit to appear in print and digital editorial media for the publication and to attend the launch event,” Sports Illustrated tells LSU Country.

The edition of the magazine will be released on May 12th with both Reese and Dunne being the first college athletes to ever be featured.

“We’ve done so much within a year,” Reese told SI. “We weren’t even supposed to be in the Final Four. We had nine new players, and it was coach [Kim Mulkey]’s second year in the SEC, so we didn’t know what to expect. We just went out there and had fun all the time and put in a lot of work all season.”

LSU has dominated the NIL space over the last year. From Reese to Dunne to other student athletes adding monstrous deals, it’s clear the university is ahead of the curve in this new era of college athletics.

After Reese made the move from Maryland to LSU, her status continued to skyrocket. With sheer dominance on the court, averaging a cool 23 points and 15 rebounds a game, her status off the floor became much more marketable.

The superstar forward led the Tigers to their first national title in program history, and after the championship game, it’s been nonstop for Reese. She’s been featured on Good Morning America, signed a deal with Mercedes Benz, Coach and much more as her NIL valuation reaches the $1.4 million mark via On3’s system.

Reese has the chance to keep the momentum rolling as she goes through the offseason before the 2023-24 season. Despite being eligible for the 2024 WNBA Draft, Reese has stated she’s “in no rush” to leave college. Time will tell, but for now, Reese is living in the moment as she transforms women’s basketball. 

The People James Baldwin Knew

The People James Baldwin Knew
The celebrated writer moved between many worlds, becoming close friends with major figures — from Marlon Brando to Toni Morrison — in art, activism and beyond.

By Nancy Hass
Published Dec. 11, 2020
Updated Dec. 17, 2020
This story is part of T’s Book Club, a series of articles and events dedicated to classic works of American literature. Click here to R.S.V.P. to a virtual conversation, led by Ayana Mathis, about “Go Tell It on the Mountain” on Dec. 17.

It is impossible to read the work of James Baldwin — who often wove memorable details from his life into his fiction, plays and essays — and not want to learn more about the man. Born in Harlem in 1924, Baldwin reached the height of literary success soon after the publication of his first few books, while also becoming a vocal and visible advocate for the civil rights movement beginning in the late 1950s. Known for being a magnetic speaker, with his wide eyes and mercurial temperament, Baldwin was also an irresistible presence and very clearly an intellectual star few could rival. Throughout the decades, he became friendly with a dazzling array of different writers, artists, activists, actors, musicians and more — all people whose lives he touched and who, in turn, helped to shape his own. Below, a primer on 10 individuals Baldwin encountered and, in his way, kept close until his death in 1987.

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Richard Avedon

ImageA spread from Taschen’s 2017 reprint of “Nothing Personal,” Richard Avedon and James Baldwin’s 1964 collaboration on the American experience.
A spread from Taschen’s 2017 reprint of “Nothing Personal,” Richard Avedon and James Baldwin’s 1964 collaboration on the American experience.Credit…Courtesy of Taschen
While Baldwin lived in Harlem in the late 1930s with his mother, stepfather and eight younger siblings, one of his teachers at the local junior high school was the Harvard-educated Harlem Renaissance poet Countee Cullen, who likely influenced the budding writer to attend his alma mater, DeWitt Clinton High School in the Bronx. A prestigious all-boys public institution at the time, it counts among its alumni dozens of 20th century luminaries, including the painters Barnett Newman and Romare Bearden, the electronics pioneer Avery Fisher and the literary critic Lionel Trilling. It was there that Baldwin found succor amid a fierce coterie of intellectually fecund, largely working-class Jews. Much of his energy was channeled into the school literary magazine, The Magpie, where one of its editors was Richard Avedon, the son of a Jewish Belarusian immigrant, who would become one of the dominant fashion photographers and portraitists of the 20th century. A year older than Baldwin, Avedon was not only visually gifted — he started taking pictures at age 12, using his father’s Brownie box camera — but an accomplished poet; as a senior, he took first prize in a citywide high school poetry contest. The two boys, both sensitive, came from high-tension homes. The Depression had cost Avedon’s father his retail dress business, and the photographer’s beloved sister, Louise, would soon begin a descent into mental illness. Baldwin’s preacher stepfather was perpetually angry, overwhelmed by his large family, and en route to madness, as well. But in high school the boys blossomed, collaborating on a magazine that showcased stylish Art Deco-inflected graphics and modernist verse. After high school, Avedon joined the merchant marine, Baldwin decamped to Greenwich Village, and they largely fell out of touch.
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A photo from the June 1941 DeWitt Clinton High School yearbook, the Clintonian, showing students involved in publications, including Richard Avedon (circle left) and James Baldwin (circle right).
A photo from the June 1941 DeWitt Clinton High School yearbook, the Clintonian, showing students involved in publications, including Richard Avedon (circle left) and James Baldwin (circle right).Credit…Via the June 1941 Dewitt Clinton High School yearbook
Then, in 1962, Avedon, by then famous for his work in Harper’s Bazaar and Life, was asked to photograph him. The shoot sparked “Nothing Personal,” a revelatory 1964 monograph in which Avedon’s photographs are accompanied by a 20,000-word essay by Baldwin. The project, as the critic Hilton Als put it, brought together four aspects of contemporary American life: civil rights, mental health, Black nationalism and the transfer of cultural power from Old Hollywood to the rock ’n’ roll generation; portraits of Allen Ginsberg and Marilyn Monroe are juxtaposed with shots of the American Nazi Party and patients in an asylum. Baldwin’s text, which is only loosely connected to the photographs, includes lucid reflections on how television advertising mirrors the zeitgeist, and the ordeal of being stopped and frisked while showing a white European friend around New York City. The book limns how the two men, so different in their origins and art, were remarkably similar in profound ways. As Als points out in his introductory essay to a new edition of the book from 2017: both were perennial outsiders, “menaced, and so, therefore, perceived as menacing despite their commercial and critical success; they knew power could be positive and effective but was ultimately illusory, fake.”

Beauford Delaney

James Baldwin and Beauford Delaney in Paris, circa 1960.
James Baldwin and Beauford Delaney in Paris, circa 1960.Credit…Courtesy of the Estate of Beauford Delaney and Michael Rosenfeld Gallery LLC, New York, NY
“I learned about the light from Beauford Delaney,” began Baldwin’s introduction to the catalog for a 1964 exhibition of the work of the Knoxville, Tenn.-born modernist painter at Paris’s Galerie Lambert, “the light contained in every thing, in every surface, in every face.” Baldwin had been a 16-year-old student at DeWitt Clinton when he first met the 39-year-old Delaney in 1940, introduced by Emile Capouya, a fellow classmate and contributor to The Magpie who would one day publish works by Ezra Pound, James Joyce and Primo Levi. Capouya figured that his friend Baldwin, who was struggling with his identity, would find common ground with the artist, whose studio was located at 181 Greene Street. Delaney, Baldwin would later write, “was the first walking, living proof for me that a Black man could be an artist.” Delaney was a paternal figure who disabused Baldwin of the notion that jazz was sinful, and played Ella Fitzgerald, Fats Waller and Bessie Smith for the boy on his scratchy record player. Queer and closeted, Delaney lived a complicated, compartmentalized life: in the Village, where he felt freer to be himself than with his more conservative friends in Harlem, he moved in bohemian circles, developing friendships with artists such as Alfred Stieglitz and Georgia O’Keeffe.

Beauford Delaney’s “Portrait of James Baldwin” (1945) in the collection of the Philadelphia Museum of Art.
Beauford Delaney’s “Portrait of James Baldwin” (1945) in the collection of the Philadelphia Museum of Art.Credit…© Estate of Beauford Delaney by permission of Derek L. Spratley, Esquire, court-appointed administrator; courtesy of Michael Rosenfeld Gallery LLC, New York, NY

Beauford Delaney’s “Dark Rapture (James Baldwin)” (1941).
Beauford Delaney’s “Dark Rapture (James Baldwin)” (1941).Credit…© Estate of Beauford Delaney by permission of Derek L. Spratley, Esquire, court-appointed administrator; courtesy of Michael Rosenfeld Gallery LLC, New York, NY
Baldwin remained a constant in the painter’s life, however. In 1948, when Baldwin was 24, he left the United States for Paris, fleeing American racism. Five years later, Delaney joined him there, extending what was to be a vacation into a permanent stay. In 1955, the painter relocated his studio to Clamart, a southwestern suburb, a move thought to support his mental health, which had started to decline. Throughout, Baldwin was loyal to his friend. When Baldwin moved to the South of France, Delaney, who died in 1979, spent weeks sitting at his easel in the writer’s garden. During Delaney’s time in France, his work, once primarily colorful figuration, reflected his deepening interest in abstraction. “In a warmer time, a less blasphemous place,” Baldwin wrote, “[Beauford] would have been recognized as my master and I as his pupil. He became for me an example of courage and integrity, humility and passion. An absolute integrity: I saw him shaken many times, and I lived to see him broken, but I never saw him bow.”

Marlon Brando

James Baldwin and Marlon Brando at the Lincoln Memorial during the August 1963 March on Washington. Posing with them are Charleton Heston (left) and Harry Belafonte.
James Baldwin and Marlon Brando at the Lincoln Memorial during the August 1963 March on Washington. Posing with them are Charleton Heston (left) and Harry Belafonte.Credit…AP Photos
In 1943, Delaney introduced a 19-year-old James Baldwin to Connie Williams, a Trinidadian restaurateur who had just opened Calypso Restaurant — whose patrons would include Tennessee Williams and entertainers such as Eartha Kitt and Paul Robeson — in a basement space on Macdougal Street. Hired as a waiter at Calypso, which had live music and dancing, Baldwin mixed with the bohemian clientele. Among the habitués who befriended the erudite young server was the writer Henry Miller. But the occasional customer with whom he may have developed the most enduring friendship was Marlon Brando, who was born the same year as Baldwin and had followed his two older sisters to New York that year and become a student of Stella Adler at the New School’s Dramatic Workshop. The men may have even shared a space together for a brief time. (Brando, who had a lifelong talent for offbeat friendships, would later become roommates with a childhood pal from Evanston, Ill., the proto-nerd character actor Wally Cox).

Brando and Baldwin bonded over a passion for racial and social justice and for the theater, forging a connection that lasted through the decades. It was Brando who, in 1952, fresh off his star-making turn in “A Streetcar Named Desire,” lent Baldwin, who had just finished writing the manuscript for “Go Tell It on the Mountain” in Switzerland, the money to fly to New York to meet the Knopf executives who wanted to publish his semiautobiographical novel. The two men were — along with Charlton Heston — among the most recognized presences on the podium at the 1963 March on Washington and, in 1966, when the actor visited the writer in Istanbul during one of Baldwin’s frequent stints in Turkey, a local friend ferried Brando in his compact car in an unsuccessful attempt to elude photographers. When the author James Grissom interviewed Brando in 1990 for a book about Tennessee Williams (“Follies of God: Tennessee Williams and the Women of the Fog,” 2015), the conversation veered unexpectedly: “If you wish to ask me what I cared about most now — if you ask me to state what was important or lasting,” he told Grissom, “it would have to be that I walked and sat and dreamed next to a man named James Baldwin. James — or Jimmy — knew how to analyze, place, describe, repair and destroy things — all in the right way and for the right reasons. Baldwin, as I liked to call him, taught me to think in a piercing way about things far more important than scripts or contracts or poems — he taught me to look into and understand people and their motives and their identities. And I didn’t always like what I saw, but it led me toward something that might be called freedom.”

Medgar Evers

James Baldwin and Medgar Evers read a newspaper together in Mississippi, 1963.
James Baldwin and Medgar Evers read a newspaper together in Mississippi, 1963.Credit…Steve Schapiro/Corbis/Getty Images
Just hours after President John F. Kennedy gave his historic civil rights address in June 1963, a speech that had likely been spurred by the pressure that Baldwin and other leaders had exerted on the administration, the writer’s friend, 37-year-old Medgar Evers, Mississippi field secretary for the N.A.A.C.P., was shot in the back and killed in his driveway by Byron De La Beckwith, a white supremacist and Klansman. Evers had been the target of several other assassination attempts in the months before. Baldwin observed that Evers seemed resigned to the fact that he would die from his activism. One imagines that Evers might have hoped, at least, that his wife, Myrlie, and children, always nervous for his safety, would not have to witness his death, or that it would take months for his killer to be convicted, rather than 31 years. Although Baldwin was already deeply involved with the movement by then — he had first met Martin Luther King Jr. in 1957 while touring the South on assignment for Harper’s and The Partisan Review, and had, over the years, developed a complex relationship with Malcolm X — he had only known Evers for five months. They met that January in Jackson, after the Congress of Racial Equality had sent the writer on a lecture tour of the Deep South. Evers invited him along to interview bystanders to the killing of a Black man by a white shopkeeper — an experience that Baldwin found terrifying; the young civil rights leader also told him of the tree he had walked past daily in his childhood, draped with shreds of clothing from a man who had been lynched there.

A 1964 telegram from Charles Evers to James Baldwin requesting his presence at the trial for the murder of Medgar Evers.
A 1964 telegram from Charles Evers to James Baldwin requesting his presence at the trial for the murder of Medgar Evers.Credit…Collection of the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture
The image, and Evers’s reconciled attitude to the possibility of his own violent and untimely death, had a profound effect. Baldwin’s memory of the last time he saw Evers, at the activist’s small ranch home, where he had gone to sign some books for the family, is among the most transfixing points in Raoul Peck’s 2016 documentary, “I Am Not Your Negro,” premised on “Remember This House,” Baldwin’s unrealized book about King, Malcolm X and Evers, for which only 30 pages of notes exist. Completing the project would have required Baldwin to travel back down to places like Selma, Ala., and Jackson, Miss., to interview the widows and children of slain leaders. The writer, by then suffering from the esophageal cancer that would kill him in 1987 at 63, was not in any shape to do it. He had become increasingly depressed about the state of American race relations. By the 1980s, according to his former literary assistant, David Leeming, who became his biographer, Baldwin’s outlook was one of “general pessimism” about the “unlikelihood of the white world’s changing its ways.”

Miles Davis

The trumpeter Miles Davis at the Jazz à Juan Festival, July 1963.
The trumpeter Miles Davis at the Jazz à Juan Festival, July 1963.Credit…Pierre Fournier/Sygma, via Getty Images
Both Baldwin and the epic jazz trumpeter Miles Davis considered themselves to be guarded people, in possession of a kind of “artistic shyness,” as Davis once described it in his 1989 autobiography, wary of other people taking up too much of their time. Davis even thought they resembled each other enough to be brothers. A mutual friend introduced them in the ’60s, and when the musician played gigs in Cap d’Antibes and at the yearly Jazz à Juan festival, he stayed for a couple of days at Baldwin’s farmhouse in Saint-Paul-de-Vence, an idyllic town in Provence. They were in awe of each other at the beginning. (“He was so goddamn heavy, all those great books he was writing, and so I didn’t know what to say to him,” Davis would recall. “Later I found out that he felt the same way about me.”) Baldwin had long been enamored of the musical process. “The man who creates the music,” he wrote in the 1957 short story “Sonny’s Blues,” “is hearing something else, is dealing with the roar rising from the void and imposing order on it as it hits the air.”

Despite their similar reputations as mercurial, the men, in fact, came from divergent backgrounds: Davis, who had attended Juilliard, was the son of a dentist and grew up in East St. Louis, Ill. But they had each developed elaborate personas that helped them navigate celebrity and a hostile white world. When they were together, however, those boundaries receded. “We would just sit in that great big beautiful house of his telling all kinds of stories,” Davis recalled. “Then we would go out to that wine garden he had and do the same thing.” Baldwin’s death shook the famously unflappable Davis. Quincy Troupe, who helped Davis write his autobiography, recalled the day he told the trumpeter that Baldwin was gone. “He was convinced that among all his friends, Jimmy would outlive him. I thought I saw tears welling in his eyes but, if there were, Miles covered it up well by going to the bathroom. One thing is certain: Miles Davis wasn’t going to let me or anybody else see him cry. But I think on this cold December day in 1987 Miles Davis was crying in the bathroom for his great friend now gone, Jimmy Baldwin.”

Richard Wright

Richard Wright at the cafe Le Tournon in Paris, circa 1950s.
Richard Wright at the cafe Le Tournon in Paris, circa 1950s.Credit… Dominique Berretty/Gamma-Rapho/Getty Images
While Beauford Delaney was Baldwin’s idealized father figure (and the antithesis of his stepfather), the writer had a far more fraught bond with the novelist Richard Wright, his literary father. In 1944, Baldwin was 20 when he knocked on the Brooklyn door of the older writer, then 36. Four years earlier, Wright had become internationally known for “Native Son,” the harrowing tale of a young Black man who accidentally kills a white woman and then, while on the run, rapes and murders his own girlfriend. The novel, which sold 215,000 copies, focused attention on the relentless racism of modern America. Like Baldwin, Wright had a fraught childhood; he was born in a log cabin in Mississippi into a family of sharecroppers, with four grandparents who had been enslaved, and a father who would desert the family when the writer was five. He was bounced around to relatives’ homes throughout the impoverished delta, winding up with his severe Seventh Day Adventist grandmother, who forbade books other than the Gospels. Wright, a precocious student, had to work to support himself instead of attending high school. Eventually, during the Great Migration, he moved to Chicago, where he got deeply involved with the Communist Party and, in 1937, moved to New York. There, he developed a friendship with the writer Ralph Ellison and began successfully publishing short stories, including those in his 1938 collection “Uncle Tom’s Children,” with its harrowing description of lynchings in the Deep South.

The cover of the inaugural Spring 1949 issue of Zero: A Review of Literature and Art, which included Baldwin’s essay “Everybody’s Protest Novel.”
The cover of the inaugural Spring 1949 issue of Zero: A Review of Literature and Art, which included Baldwin’s essay “Everybody’s Protest Novel.”
Credit…Via Amazon
To the young, ambitious Baldwin, he was like a god. Over the course of the early years of their relationship, Wright — who moved to Paris with his wife and child in 1946, soon after the publication of his memoir “Black Boy” — read early drafts of Baldwin’s novel that would eventually become “Go Tell It on the Mountain” and helped Baldwin land a fellowship that launched his writing career. When Baldwin also moved to Paris, Wright introduced him to the influential editors at the new literary magazine Zero. But, in a stunning Oedipal feat, the 24-year-old’s first piece for Zero, published in 1949, was a fierce takedown of “Native Son” titled “Everybody’s Protest Novel.” In it, Baldwin skewered race-based political fiction, starting with Harriet Beecher Stowe’s “Uncle Tom’s Cabin” (1852), made limp by the “wet eyes of the sentimentalist,” and lambasted Wright for making his protagonist Bigger Thomas a bookend to that portrayal, a cardboard character who merely reinforced the prejudice and stereotyping of Black people as subhuman, violent and trapped by circumstance. As Als noted in The New Yorker in 1998, the essay was “meant not only to bury the tradition of Black letters which had its roots in a Communism supported by white dilettantes but also to supersede Wright as the one Black writer worth reading in the largely white world of American letters.” Predictably, Wright felt betrayed, and although they stayed connected, they never fully reconciled. (Baldwin would later concede that it had been wrong to hurt Wright.) In “Alas, Poor Richard,” a 1961 essay he wrote after Wright’s death, at age 52 of a heart attack, Baldwin, searching to understand the complex friction between them called him “my ally and my witness, and alas! my father.”

Lorraine Hansberry

Lorraine Hansberry in her Bleecker Street apartment, April 1959.
Lorraine Hansberry in her Bleecker Street apartment, April 1959.Credit…David Attie/Getty Images
He called her Sweet Lorraine, a likely reference to the Nat King Cole version of the jazz standard, but also a tribute to her particular combination of steely intelligence and gentleness. They met in New York in 1958, when the writer and playwright, whom Baldwin would later refer to as “that small, dark girl, with her wit, her wonder and her eloquent compassion,” came to a theater workshop production of his melancholic gay-themed novel, “Giovanni’s Room” (1956). Baldwin, 34, was already famous, having published “Go Tell It on the Mountain” and his first collection of essays, “Notes of a Native Son” (1955); the 28-year-old Hansberry’s play “A Raisin in the Sun,” its title derived from “Harlem,” a poem by her mentor Langston Hughes, was about to debut on Broadway, making her the first African-American woman to have her work appear there. While the assembled mandarins attacked “Giovanni’s Room,” Hansberry — petite and relentless, a geyser of well-reasoned passion — defended Baldwin as a meteoric talent and a teller of naked truths. That they were both queer likely strengthened their connection even more. Over the course of his life, Baldwin wrote rhapsodically about many friends, especially those in the civil rights movement, but his recollections of Hansberry, who died in 1965 at 34 of pancreatic cancer, had an unparalleled luminosity and joy.

Their evenings together in her Greenwich Village apartment were full of arguments, booze and humor. Although she was a committed Marxist while he was untethered to a single ideology, together they became the literary conscience of the Black liberation movement. In 1963, in the wake of the publication of Baldwin’s “The Fire Next Time,” she was among the people he took (along with others including Harry Belafonte, the psychologist Kenneth Clark and the singer and actress Lena Horne) to a historic and antagonistic secret meeting requested by Attorney General Robert F. Kennedy. Despite a tsunami of rancor, the gathering, in which an enraged Hansberry suggested there was “no alternative except our going in the streets … and chaos,” contributed a month later to John F. Kennedy’s famed civil rights address. To Baldwin, she possessed a remarkable alchemy of femininity, dagger sharpness and fidelity to uncompromising ideals, which he found irresistible. “I would often stagger down her stairs as the sun came up, usually in the middle of a paragraph,” he recalled in Esquire in 1969, “and always in the middle of a laugh. That marvelous laugh. That marvelous face.” But the pair shared an ineffable isolation as well, born of their acute awareness of the racial oppression that hung like soot in the air, clinging to everything. “Her going,” he wrote, “did not so much make me lonely as make me realize how lonely we were. We had that respect for each other, which perhaps is only felt by people on the same side of the barricades, listening to the accumulating thunder of the hooves of horses and the treads of tanks.”

William Styron

William Styron at home in Roxbury, Conn., 1967.
William Styron at home in Roxbury, Conn., 1967.Credit…© Inge Morath/Magnum Photos
In September 1960, Rose Styron, the forbearing wife of the 35-year-old novelist William Styron, fielded a call to their home in bucolic Litchfield County, Conn., from Robert Silvers, an editor at Harper’s Magazine. Silvers, then 30, who a few years later would co-found The New York Review of Books, was working with Baldwin, 36, on an essay about Martin Luther King Jr. It was slow going; Baldwin, who had come back from France to work on the front lines of the civil rights movement, was feeling burned out in Greenwich Village. Could he come stay in the Styrons’ gracious 19th-century home? William Styron, a Virginian WASP descended from slave owners who had become famous in 1951 for his novel “Lie Down in Darkness,” was gestating the 1967 book that would at first gain him outrageous accolades and a Pulitzer Prize, and then bedevil him when critical opinion turned vicious: “The Confessions of Nat Turner.” The story of a violent 1831 slave revolt that resulted in more than 200 deaths and unimaginable carnage, the rarely discussed incident had been an obsession of Styron’s since adolescence.

Styron’s home in Roxbury, 2009.
Styron’s home in Roxbury, 2009.
Credit…Andrew Sullivan for The New York Times
Baldwin remained on the couple’s five acres in Roxbury for eight months, taking over the guesthouse that Styron used as a studio. He worked on the novel “Another Country” (1962) and may have even prepared to interview the Black Muslim leader Elijah Muhammad in Chicago for an essay that would be included in “The Fire Next Time” (1963). At night, after Rose put their young children to bed, the three adults would retreat to the living room, with glass doors that overlooked the property. There was a fire in the hearth and plenty of Jack Daniels. Sometimes other local literary friends would stop by, including Philip Roth and Arthur Miller. Though Baldwin later told The Paris Review, “It was a wonderful time in my life, but not at all literary. We sang songs, drank a little too much and on occasion chatted with the people who were dropping in to see us.” Before he left, Baldwin convinced Styron to take the leap that would eventually put him in the cross hairs of critical opinion: to write Nat Turner in the voice of the slave preacher himself. Upon its publication, everyone from John Cheever and Robert Penn Warren to Carlos Fuentes and Alex Haley breathlessly hailed the achievement but, six months later, the work was bitterly castigated as a racist tract that demeaned the Black folk hero. Styron was devastated at the publication, in 1968, of “William Styron’s Nat Turner: Ten Black Writers Respond.” That spring, Baldwin, who had declined to contribute to the volume, moderated a debate between Styron and the activist and actor Ossie Davis, who was leading a protest against an upcoming film version of the book, which was never made. Rigorously tactful, Baldwin argued that Styron was well within his rights to enter into a “confrontation with his history.” No one, he told the audience, “can tell a writer what he can write.”

Marguerite Yourcenar

The French writer Marguerite Yourcenar at home on Mount Desert Island, in Maine, 1979.
The French writer Marguerite Yourcenar at home on Mount Desert Island, in Maine, 1979.Credit…© JP Laffont
The Provençal village of Saint-Paul-de-Vence, about 10 miles west of Nice, traces its origins back to roughly 1000 A.D. But since the 1920s, the center of cultural life there has been a rustic family-owned inn called La Colombe d’Or. At first, it was the artists who came, in a sun-baked retreat from the dense scene of between-the-wars Paris. The owner, Paul Roux, who lacked much formal education but possessed exquisite taste, would encourage them to pay for meals or lodging with works. Over the years, the place became filled with pieces by the likes of Pablo Picasso, Henri Matisse, Georges Braque and Fernand Léger, many of which still hang with an insouciance that belies a top-notch security system, on the scuffed plaster walls. By the 1950s, as the Cannes Film Festival started to take off, the inn would become the magnet for movie stars, rock gods, bon vivants and tourists that it remains today. So enchanted was Baldwin by the little hotel and the town that buzzed around it that, in 1970, he began renting an apartment there, eventually writing his novel “Just Above My Head” (1979) at Chez Baldwin. The Colombe d’Or — always more than a just a restaurant with rooms upstairs, the kind of place where you can spend the day by the pool, nibbling on a bouquet de crevettes and ordering another bottle of rosé — became his second living room.

While he often brought along house guests, including the singer Nina Simone and the actor Sidney Poitier, on other days he hung out there with a trio of regulars — the married actors Simone Signoret and Yves Montand, who had first met at the inn in 1949, and the aristocratic Belgian-born writer Marguerite Yourcenar, lionized for her novel “Memoirs of Hadrian” (1951). Montand co-owned Cafe de La Place across the street from the hotel, where there was a designated area for everyone to play pétanque, a lawn bowling game similar to bocce. It made sense that Yourcenar and Baldwin would get on; they were both philosophical writers with a strong moral and historic frame (and a theatrical affect); she, too, toggled between essays, novels and short stories. And, like him, she lived nearly all her life openly queer, mostly in the U.S. with her English translator, Grace Frick, from 1939 until Frick’s 1979 death; their white clapboard house in a tiny Maine village had obvious parallels to Baldwin’s refuge in Saint Paul-de-Vence. After Frick’s demise, Youncenar visited the French town with her traveling companion, a young gay man named Jerry Wilson. In 1983, she translated Baldwin’s play “The Amen Corner” (1954) into French, and when he received the Légion d’Honneur in 1986, a year before her death at 84, she was said to be in Paris, at his side.

Toni Morrison

Toni Morrison and Baldwin at the Founders Day celebration at the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture in Harlem, 1986.
Toni Morrison and Baldwin at the Founders Day celebration at the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture in Harlem, 1986.Credit…© Hakim Mutlaq
The novelist and professor Toni Morrison, who died in 2019, was only seven years younger than Baldwin but, as a writer, she belonged to the generation that came after his. Partly that was because while he had started publishing work in his early 20s, Morrison, who won the Nobel Prize in 1993, got a later start. Her first novel, “The Bluest Eye,” came out in 1970. She was 39 and working at Random House, a job she held for two decades, editing the works of Angela Davis, Toni Cade Bambara and Muhammad Ali. The two writers met in 1973 to discuss a potential book contract, which never came about. As they aged, their legends were burnished and they were asked about one another by journalists and critics. In 1987, the poet Quincy Troupe, who co-wrote Miles Davis’s autobiography as well as “James Baldwin: The Legacy” (1989), asked the dying Baldwin his thoughts about Morrison: “Toni’s my ally,” he said, “and it’s really probably too complex to get into … Her gift is allegory … in general, she’s taken a myth, or she takes what seems to be a myth, and turns it into something else. I don’t know how to put this. ‘Beloved’ could be the story of truth.”

Maya Angelou and Toni Morrison at James Baldwin’s funeral at the Cathedral of St. John the Divine, December 1987.
Maya Angelou and Toni Morrison at James Baldwin’s funeral at the Cathedral of St. John the Divine, December 1987.Credit…© Thomas Allen Harris, “Untitled” (Amiri Baraka, Maya Angelou & Toni Morrison at James Baldwin’s Funeral at Cathedral of St. John the Divine), (1987)
In the tribute Morrison delivered at Baldwin’s funeral, her debt was clear: “You made American English honest — genuinely international. You exposed its secrets and reshaped it until it was a truly modern dialogic, representative, humane. You stripped it of ease and false comfort and fake innocence and evasion and hypocrisy. And in place of deviousness was clarity. In place of soft, plump lies was a lean, targeted power. In place of intellectual disingenuousness and what you called ‘exasperating egocentricity,’ you gave us undecorated truth. You replaced lumbering platitudes with an upright elegance. You went into that forbidden territory and decolonized it, ‘robbed it of the jewel of its naïveté,’ and un-gated it for Black people so that in your wake we could enter it, occupy it, restructure it in order to accommodate our complicated passion.” After Baldwin’s death, many considered Morrison an heir to her friend’s vast role in American life. She edited two collections of his writings among her lengthy oeuvre and in 2017 published “The Origin of Others,” a memoir and cultural exploration in the Baldwin mold.

Top photos and videos: Pierre Fournier/Sygma/Getty Images (Davis); © Inge Morath/Magnum Photos (Styron); Pond 5 (Baldwin car video); © Van Vechten Trust/ courtesy of the Beinecke Library (color Baldwin); Steve Schapiro/Corbis/Getty Images (Evers); Getty Images (Brando video) Dominique Beretty/Gamma-Rapho/Getty Images; David Attie/Getty Images (Hansberry); Photofest (Avedon); © Bob Adelman Estate (Baldwin); © Hakim Mutlaq (Morrison); from the collection of the Philadelphia Museum of Art, Philadelphia, PA, © Estate of Beauford Delaney by permission of Derek L. Spratley, Esquire, court-appointed administrator; Courtesy of Michael Rosenfeld Gallery LLC, New York, NY (Delaney Painting); Courtesy of the Estate of Beauford Delaney and Michael Rosenfeld Gallery LLC, New York, NY (Baldwin/Delaney); Louis Monier/Gamma-Rapho/Getty Images (Yourcenar)

What the Church Meant for James Baldwin
Dec. 4, 2020

USDA wants to help farmers feed families, but advocates and lawmakers say it’s not enough

USDA wants to help farmers feed families, but advocates and lawmakers say it’s not enough

Experts say the country needs a stronger safety net for families in need.
ByStephanie Ebbs
May 2, 2020, 2:00 AM
• 11 min read
Farmworkers face unique risks during coronavirus pandemic
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Farmworkers face unique risks during coronavirus pandemic
Farmworkers in the United States are classified as essential workers.

One of the most confounding consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic continues to be the problem of farmers bulldozing or dumping their crops at the same time as thousands of Americans line up at food banks dealing with a shortage of supplies.

With everyday Americans unable to keep up with demand despite organizing fundraising drives or collections to send trucks of wasted produce or milk where it is needed most, the largest groups representing farmers and food banks are asking for federal help. They have now called on the U.S. Department of Agriculture to scale up efforts to the national level.

Lawmakers called on the USDA to provide “bold and innovative” solutions Friday to address the harm to farmers and the confusion over why food is being discarded while other Americans need help feeding their families.
MORE: USDA to try ‘out of the box’ solution to get food from farmers to food banks

No one knows how much food has been lost nationwide since restaurants, schools, hotels and other businesses have closed and stopped buying food in bulk, but farmers have reported dumping milk, plowing under vegetables and facing the possibility of euthanizing livestock if they can’t take animals to meat processing plants.

The USDA wants to address that issue with a new “farmers to families” program that will use federal money to pay farmers to box up and distribute their own product to food banks. Similar to a community-supported agriculture (CSA) box you might pick up from a local farm or farmers market, the donation will include fruits and vegetables, dairy products, cooked poultry or pork, or some combination of the three, and be provided to food banks at no cost.
PHOTO: People collect buckets and truckloads of potatoes Wednesday, April 15, 2020, at Ryan Cranney’s farm in Oakley, Idaho.
Pat Sutphin/Times-News via APPat Sutphin/Times-News via AP
People collect buckets and truckloads of potatoes Wednesday, April 15, 2020, at Ryan C…

Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue said the program has the potential to address one of the reasons the pandemic has been so disruptive to the food supply chain, that big national producers and distributors can’t easily shift from delivering entire trucks of product to providing food in a way that’s accessible to consumers and doesn’t add work for food banks to repackage it.

“This program will not only provide direct financial relief to our farmers and ranchers,” Perdue told reporters in April. “Mr. President, it will allow for the purchase and distribution of our agricultural abundance in this country to help our fellow Americans in need.”

The USDA is accelerating the process to decide which farmers will get part of the $3 billion available from the program. Submissions for contracts were due Friday and the agency said it would start granting them in time for the first food box deliveries on May 15. A USDA spokesperson said they received “an abundance of interest” in the program.

“Farmers to families” could be an experiment in a new model of agriculture that addresses the disruptions of the current emergency, but lawmakers, experts and advocates also warn that spending federal money to buy and donate food won’t solve all the ripple effects from the pandemic.
MORE: Friends come together to get free food across US from farms to those in need

Michigan Sen. Debbie Stabenow, the top Democrat on the Senate Agriculture Committee, wrote to Perdue on Friday asking that the USDA prioritize options for the program that will reduce food waste and allow producers and food banks to be flexible in adapting contracts to provide a variety of seasonal products.

Elizabeth Balkan, director of the food waste, food and agriculture program at the Natural Resources Defense Council, said that even though disruptions from the pandemic brought attention to the increased waste of products from farms, it’s a longstanding issue that the current system hasn’t fixed.

“Even in the best of times there’s enormous amounts of food waste happening upstream at the point of production or the farm level,” she said, citing estimates that billions of pounds of produce can go unharvested or unsold every year.

“The reason why we’re in this mess is because there’s so many intermediary points and excess food and it’s hard for excess food to get to the people in need in a straightforward manner,” Balkan said.
The USDA “Farmers to Families” program would pay farmers to box up produce, dairy, a…

Balkan said she’s still concerned prefilled boxes won’t stop all food from being wasted if producers aren’t matched up with organizations to distribute the food or if the contents of the boxes don’t match the foods families need. But she said the pandemic has made people appreciate the people that produce our food and that it could fuel a push for policies that help reduce food waste.

Miguel Gomez, an assistant professor at Cornell University who researches the food supply chain and distribution, said the program could show if our food system can adapt to entirely new ways of packaging and distributing fresh food that’s ready to go to market on a larger scale and address some of the weaknesses the current crisis has highlighted.

“I think these type of programs have the opportunity to develop the business as trustees and the supply chain expertise for businesses to really make good money innovating input distribution. It is a way, also, to diversify our food supply chain structure,” he told ABC News.

Gomez said one of the challenges in the current system is that big farming operations supply large retailers while small local farms can sell directly or via farmers markets, but there are fewer outlets for midsize producers and distributors that could be more flexible, affordable and resilient to change. While the food from this program will go to food banks where there’s the most need, Gomez said it could also change the food market for consumers as more families look for places to buy food directly if they’re scared or unable to go to grocery stores.

“I think it will be very interesting to see the ability or power of our food system to repurpose all that food that is there,” he said.
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A nonprofit, Feeding America, anticipates 17.1 million people could face difficulty affording food as a result of the pandemic, in addition to the 37 million people who were considered food insecure before the crisis.

But advocates, including Feeding America, are concerned that when the national emergency is over, donations and government programs established during the pandemic could slow down even though the economy and families impacted financially will take years to recover.

The Trump administration’s previous policies on food assistance programs and other parts of the social safety net emphasized getting Americans back to work, citing the growing economy and low rate of unemployment. But with the economic downturn from the pandemic expected to last, advocates are pushing the administration and Congress to start expanding the social safety net as part of starting the recovery.
PHOTO: Hank Scott of Long & Scott Farms stands in a field of rotting cucumbers that he was unable to harvest due to lack of demand on April 30, 2020, in Mount Dora, Fla.
Joe Raedle/Getty ImagesJoe Raedle/Getty Images
Hank Scott of Long & Scott Farms stands in a field of rotting cucumbers that he was un…

The USDA said it has increased spending on SNAP benefits by 40% during the pandemic through state waivers to allow recipients to be automatically bumped up to the maximum benefit, provide school meals that can be picked up at home and deliver cash assistance to families in need.

Joel Berg, CEO of Hunger Free America, said that while food banks need support and are playing a vital role in the pandemic, their role can’t compare to the long-term impact of federal spending.

“The truth is in best of times, they are less than one-tenth of the dollar amount of the federal nutrition assistance safety net,” he told ABC News.

He said the efforts to expand nutrition programs during the emergency might not be helping the people with the most desperate need, the lowest-income households that already receive the maximum amount of benefits or families that can’t get to schools or food banks to collect meals and groceries.
Pat Sutphin/Times-News via APPat Sutphin/Times-News via AP
Ricky Jones, operations manager at Magic Valley Quality Milk Transport, walks out the d…

Experts also say that providing families more money through programs like SNAP is better for the local economy because families spend their benefits at local grocery stores and spend the money they would otherwise use on food for other necessities.

Berg said anti-hunger advocates have been pushing for a 15% increase in SNAP benefits in the next coronavirus response bill. Democrats, like House Appropriations Committee Chair Rosa DeLauro, said they want the USDA to support that increase as well as possible programs to expand food distribution and support organizations like World Central Kitchen, which has been providing money to restaurants to prepare and donate meals using their existing staff.

Katie Fitzgerald, executive vice president and COO of Feeding America, said that while food banks have more stock on hand because of government programs to buy excess food, they can’t sustain the push to help millions of Americans in need on donations alone.

“This is a problem that our food bank system, however strong and capable it is, is not able to solve on its own,” she told ABC News in April.

“It requires a massive government solution, through the various federal nutrition programs, TFAP (The Emergency Food Assistance Program), other than child nutrition programs, and it has to include a SNAP solution.”

How Farmers are Helping Food Banks Feed America

How Farmers are Helping Food Banks Feed America
Credit: Feeding America
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By Vince Hall @vincehall

My father spent 30 years in the rice business and I remember driving a “bank out” wagon to transport the grain before I ever drove a car. From those rural roots I came to appreciate that farmers are the foundation of our nation’s food system, providing the nourishing foods we all need to lead healthy, happy lives. Farmers — through advocacy, fundraising and more — are also critical partners in our nation’s fight against hunger, especially now, during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Today I’m proud to serve Feeding America, the nation’s largest hunger-relief organization. Working together, in 2020 we provided a record-number of meals to our neighbors in need amid new challenges to putting food on the table: a once-in-a-generation pandemic made going to the grocery store an uncertain experience, food prices reached a 50-year high and unemployment rates rivaled those of the Great Depression.
When it comes to making the case for strengthening the nation’s food programs, farmers are some of our most effective supporters.

As Feeding America’s network of 200 food banks and 60,000 food pantries and meal programs worked on the frontline to stem the rising tide of hunger, farmers were, and continue to be, at the side of food banks to help meet the skyrocketing need.

Even before the spread of COVID-19, food banks and farmers have worked hand-in-hand to keep plates full through programs such as The Emergency Food Assistance Program. Through TEFAP, the Agriculture Department purchases high-quality foods from U.S. farms. Feeding America, and other emergency food providers, then partner with states to provide households in need with nourishing foods

TEFAP is a significant win-win across the board. Farmers generate income from USDA food purchases and food banks receive a steady volume of nutritious food to distribute. Last year, the people we serve took home an astounding 1.7 billion meals from TEFAP purchases of food produced on American farms.

As hunger in the U.S. is magnified during COVID-19, it has become even more clear that the charitable food sector cannot do the work of feeding the nation alone. We also need deep investments in our nation’s federal nutrition programs, from TEFAP to the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program — a program that provides nine meals for every one our food bank network provides.

Fortunately, when it comes to making the case for strengthening the nation’s food programs, farmers are some of our most effective supporters.

Organizations such as the American Farm Bureau have been critical allies in urging lawmakers to make use of every tool at their disposal to ensure no child goes to bed hungry and fewer families make impossible choices between paying rent and buying groceries. Last year, Farm Bureau and Feeding America teamed up to press USDA to quickly design and implement solutions to address growing hunger while national news programs broadcast images of agricultural goods being destroyed, due to pandemic-induced supply chain disruptions. Ultimately, this led to the introduction of the highly successful Farmers to Families Food Box Program

Beyond advocacy, Farm Bureau used its successful #StillFarming campaign to shed light on how farmers are working overtime to keep our nation fed through uncertain times. AFBF has partnered with Feeding America to raise funds through the sale of campaign-themed merchandise to weather a perfect storm of increased demand, declines in food donations and disruptions to the charitable food system.

In November 2019, before the beginning of the COVID-19 crisis, Feeding America Chief Executive Officer Claire Babineaux-Fontenot was a guest on the Farm Food Facts podcast, where she discussed the role of farmers in ending hunger: “Farmers in this country are the bedrock of this country, and so many farmers are doing so much already to help people facing hunger.” Claire’s words were true then and they are especially true today. As our network continues to help families have full lives and full stomachs, the role of farmers in helping us do that work cannot be overstated.

Vince Hall is interim chief government relations officer at Feeding America. Babineaux-Fontenot recently joined AFBF President Zippy Duvall for a FarmSide Chat podcast to discuss how communities have come together over the last year to ensure food is getting from the farm to those who need it most.

USDA Ensures Food, Funding during Pandemic

USDA Ensures Food, Funding during Pandemic

Judge orders L.A. City and County to offer Shelter to Everyone on Skid Row by Fall

Judge orders L.A. city and county to offer shelter to everyone on skid row by fall

Judge David O. Carter tours skid row with a police officer.
U.S. District Court judge David O. Carter tours skid row with LAPD Officer Deon Joseph on April 3, 2020. (Myung J. Chun / Los Angeles Times)
APRIL 20, 2021 UPDATED 4:15 PM PT
A federal judge overseeing a sprawling lawsuit about homelessness in Los Angeles ordered the city and county Tuesday to offer some form of shelter or housing to the entire homeless population of skid row by October.

Judge David O. Carter granted a preliminary injunction sought by the plaintiffs in the case last week and now is telling the city and county that they must offer single women and unaccompanied children on skid row a place to stay within 90 days, help families within 120 days and finally, by Oct. 18, offer every homeless person on skid row housing or shelter.

It’s unclear whether the city and county will challenge the order, which also calls for the city to put $1 billion into an escrow account — an idea that has raised concerns among city officials.

The ruling argues that L.A. city and county wrongly focused on permanent housing at the expense of more temporary shelter, “knowing that massive development delays were likely while people died in the streets.” That element of the order underscores the judge’s skepticism of a core part of L.A.’s current strategy to tackle homelessness.


“Los Angeles has lost its parks, beaches, schools, sidewalks, and highway systems due to the inaction of city and county officials who have left our homeless citizens with no other place to turn,” Carter wrote in a 110-page brief sprinkled with quotes from Abraham Lincoln and an extensive history of how skid row was first created.

Read the full injunction here

“All of the rhetoric, promises, plans, and budgeting cannot obscure the shameful reality of this crisis — that year after year, there are more homeless Angelenos, and year after year, more homeless Angelenos die on the streets.” Last year more than 1,300 homeless people died in Los Angeles County.

In the last homeless count in January 2020, more than 4,600 unhoused people were found to be living on skid row — about 2,500 in large shelters and 2,093 on the streets. They account for only slightly more than 10% of the city’s overall homeless population, and it’s not clear what Carter’s order might mean for other parts of the city.

The judge wrote that “after adequate shelter is offered,” he would allow the city to enforce laws that keep streets and sidewalks clear of tents so long as they’re consistent with previous legal rulings that have limited the enforcement of such rules. That appears to only apply to skid row.

He also ordered the county to offer “support services to all homeless residents who accept the offer of housing” including placements in “appropriate emergency, interim, or permanent housing and treatment services.” The costs would be split by the city and county, he said.

Rob Wilcox, a spokesman for the city attorney’s office, said Tuesday that city lawyers are reviewing the order. He declined to comment further.

Skip Miller, partner at the Miller Barondess law firm, which is outside counsel for the county in the lawsuit, said the county is “now evaluating our options, including the possibility of an appeal.”

Previously, the county had asked to be removed from the case, arguing that it was about the city and that the county was aggressively responding to homelessness without any direction from the court. It cited efforts that included spending hundreds of millions of dollars annually through the Measure H sales tax and developing innovative strategies such as Project Roomkey in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Project Roomkey is a state program that provides temporary funding for cities and counties to rent hotel rooms for homeless people during the pandemic.

The push for an injunction “is an attempt by property owners and businesses to rid their neighborhood of homeless people,” Miller said.

David Barker, 56, is visiting with his friend living in a tent on skid row in Los Angeles, Calif. on Thursday, March 19, 2020. David is not homeless but he works in the area. Because of the coronavirus pandemic city and county workers are working to move people living on the street inside.

L.A. plans nearly $1 billion in spending to address homelessness under Garcetti plan

April 19, 2021
“There is no legal basis for an injunction because the county is spending hundreds of millions of dollars a year on proven strategies,” he added.

Matthew Umhofer, an attorney representing the plaintiffs, the L.A. Alliance for Human Rights, said he and his clients were ecstatic. Carter’s call for action was what they had been looking for when they filed the case, he said, and why they sought out Carter, who had overseen similar cases in Orange County in recent years, to preside over it.

“This is exactly the kind of aggressive emergency action that we think is necessary on the issue of homelessness in Los Angeles,” Umhofer said.

The Alliance is a coalition of downtown business owners and residents that filed the case in March 2020, accusing the city and county of breaching their duty to abate a nuisance, reducing property value without compensation, wasting public funds and violating the state environmental act and state and federal acts protecting people with disabilities.

Carter’s order came the day that Mayor Eric Garcetti released his budget for the next fiscal year, which includes nearly $1 billion in spending on homelessness. The longtime federal judge also ordered “that $1 billion, as represented by Mayor Garcetti, will be placed in escrow forthwith.”

Of the $1 billion in homeless spending planned by Garcetti, more than a third would come from Proposition HHH, the 2016 bond measure to build permanent housing for homeless residents. Garcetti aides said they expect the city will be building or developing 89 HHH projects over the next fiscal year, for a total of 5,651 housing units.

Whether Carter’s order will disrupt those activities is unclear. In his order, the judge said he wants a report in 90 days of every developer receiving funds from HHH, as well as new regulations to “limit the possibility of funds being wasted.”

At a press conference Tuesday afternoon, Garcetti declined to say whether the city would file an appeal of the order, saying he first wants to read it. But he suggested that Carter’s order could slow down the construction of HHH projects.

“Roadblocks masquerading as progress are the last things we need,” he said.

David Barker, 56, is visiting with his friend living in a tent on skid row in Los Angeles, Calif. on Thursday, March 19, 2020. David is not homeless but he works in the area. Because of the coronavirus pandemic city and county workers are working to move people living on the street inside.

Can L.A. really clear homeless people from skid row by October? Here’s what we know

April 20, 2021
Because the $1 billion for homelessness doesn’t yet exist — some of it hasn’t arrived from Washington and none of it has been approved by the City Council for the coming year — Garcetti said he also fears the city will be asked instead to put some other source of money in the escrow account.

Carter has also asked for a number of reports from city and county officials about how money for combating homelessness has been and is currently being spent. He has also ordered that the city and county cease any sales or transfers of city or county property before such reports are provided.

The lengthy ruling also skewered corruption scandals involving housing projects, “excessive delays and skyrocketing costs” under the HHH bond measure, and L.A.’s failure to seek federal reimbursement for Project Roomkey rooms.

Councilman Kevin de León, whose district includes skid row, welcomed the judge’s decision. Although L.A. needs more clarity about setting aside $1 billion, he said, the tight timeframe to offer shelter or housing to skid row residents “lights a fire under the city to act with a real sense of urgency and to match the rhetoric with real outcomes to save lives.”

“It’s a strong shot across the bow — and he is expecting action,” de León said. “Not continued negotiations or studying everything to death.”

Pete White, executive director of the skid row-based Los Angeles Community Action Network, which is an intervenor in the case, said his organization had “grown concerned that politicians are using this litigation to justify investment in emergency shelters instead of housing.”

“We all know that shelters won’t solve our housing crisis, and they definitely won’t address the structural racism that got us here in the first place.”

Skid row activist and resident Jeff Page echoed White , saying the tight window for moving people means they won’t be going to permanent housing but instead to “dorm style living that in and of itself is problematic.” What’s needed, he said, is more permanent housing in the neighborhood to be built as quickly as possible.

“We need more housing here. We need more services,” he said.

In his order, Carter outlined historic forms of discrimination that had cut Black people out of housing opportunities, including redlining, segregated systems of assistance during the Great Depression, highway construction that displaced Black families, and criminalization that has disproportionately affected Black communities.

Racial inequity has continued to color government handling of the crisis, Carter concluded, opining that current city and county policies “compound and perpetuate structural racism, threatening the integrity of Black families in Los Angeles and forcing a disproportionate number of Black families to go unhoused.”

The judge has previously compared the situation to the aftermath of the seminal civil rights case Brown vs. Board of Education, saying there are times when the federal judiciary may need to act “after a long period of inaction by local government officials.”

Laurie Levenson, a professor at Loyola Law School, called the 110-page order a “deep dive into the problems of homelessness in Los Angeles and an expression of Carter’s frustration with how the city and county have responded to this crisis.” She noted that judges in the South during the 1950s and 1960s had used similarly expansive injunctions to make desegregation a reality and in other cases to implement prison reform.

She wasn’t sure how a higher court might rule if this case ends up getting appealed but said it was “certainly a landmark decision.”

“It is an open question whether the appellate court will step in,” she said. “As Judge Carter acknowledges, there is usually a hearing before such an order. However, he has loaded up his decision with facts that he says obviate the need for a hearing. The judge has made a bold move.”

News of the injunction had not trickled down to the streets of skid row Tuesday, but people reacted favorably when informed of it. Hasan Saleem, 58, who was sitting outside his tent on 6th Street, said he would take housing “right away” if offered, even if it takes 180 days. Still, he remained skeptical.

“I wouldn’t mind waiting if it was true,” he said. “I don’t know if it’s true or not.”

“It’s better than how they used to do it when they just take your stuff and put you to jail,” said Peaceful Bolden, who was standing with a small group across the street from the Los Angeles Mission. “At least they’re trying.”

But Bolden said she did not think housing alone would be enough.

“Some of these people are just refugees from whatever life they used to have,” she said. “They need mental health. They need hospice, some of them. A lot of them don’t want to leave because they don’t want to be under anyone’s rules.”

Andy Bales, president and CEO of the Union Rescue Mission, had heard the news and hailed it as the “wall of reality” that the city and county are finally running into.

“It’s what I came to Union Rescue Mission to accomplish,” Bales said. “I’ve always wanted to decentralize skid row and regionalize Services throughout the County. My hope is this will do that.”

How the Clintons Robbed and Destroyed Haiti

By Takudzwa Hillary Chiwanza, African Exponent, Feb. 18, 2020

The imprint of Bill Clinton and Hillary Clinton is indelible. The couple’s presence and impact on the Caribbean island have brought nothing but prolonged despair for the Haitians. Their elusive and opaque deals in the country have not done anything to alleviate the country out of poverty depths. The purported interests of helping Haiti from its myriad of problems have only caused stagnation in Haiti.

The presence of Bill Clinton, who also served as the president of the United States together with his wife who served as the Secretary of State during Obama’s tenure can be traced back to the 90s. Their interests in Haiti are not a new phenomenon. If not, their interests in Haiti have almost become irrevocably entrenched and have had far-reaching consequences in the lives of ordinary Haitian citizens.

Their history with the country dates back to 1975 when they had their honeymoon there. If there is an unpopular couple in Haiti, it definitely has to be the Clintons; for they are held in contempt and in despicable terms. What the Clintons did is unforgivable to the Haitians.

The devastating 2010 earthquake left Haiti in tatters. The country’s economy reeled under the biting and excruciating effects of the earthquake. Because of their history with Haiti, the Clintons seized this chance in the interests of “assisting” Haiti in its times of unparalleled difficulty. But their involvement with the earthquake relief programs was the final proof Haitians needed to show that the Clintons’ true intentions with the country were to rob it for their own parochial interests.

Over 220,000 Killed in Quake
Bill Clinton’s influence in Haiti ranges from the 1990s agricultural policies in Haiti that destroyed the country’s rice industry to the meddling in internal affairs and finally to the earthquake. There is a sense of permanency attached to the Clintons’ name as regards their activities in Haiti, particularly the Clinton Foundation.

When the earthquake struck, the global response was to send in donations to Haiti. But of course, that needed a commission that would be designed to have an oversight role as regards the disbursement of the various relief packages pouring through. The Clintons stepped up to lead the global response. The Interim Haiti Recovery Commission (IHRC) was brought into life and Bill Clinton was selected to be its co-chair. At that time, Hillary Clinton was still the Secretary of State and thus responsible for channeling USAID relief spending to Haiti.

One could not have found an escape from their influence. Bill Clinton co-chaired the commission alongside Haitian Prime Minister Jean-Max Bellerive. Some $13.3 billion was pledged by international donors so that Haiti could be rebuilt and the lives of Haitians uplifted.

The IHRC was comprised of two parts: one that had the foreigners and one led by the Haitian Prime Minister. Bill Clinton chaired the foreign part and it had all the donors; they had to the IHRC $0.10 billion over two years or forgive $0.20 billion of Haitian debt. Each and every decision made by the Haiti section of the commission had to be endorsed by the foreign section. And Clinton was at the helm of the foreign part of that commission.

As the money found its way into the possession of the IHRC, it increasingly became arrogant and opaque. The only thing that came out of the post-earthquake relief plans was the construction of an industrial park called Caracol, which cost $300 million. The US was also amenable to financing a power plant. The belief held by the Clintons and their allies in terms of rebuilding Haiti was premised on employing short-term plans espoused in the foreign aid industry that the US had imposed on Haiti all these years.

They hoped that Caracol would sizeably attract foreign businesses for the reconstruction of the country’s badly fractured economy. It was the same old policy that did not care about the pertinent issue of creating long-lasting projects that would eventually help the poverty-stricken Haitians. The foreign-aid industry plans are concerned with benefiting the international players, the private contractors.

The industrial park is considered a very big flop by the US. Worse still, several hundred farmers were evicted from there in order to make way for the 600-acre park. Too much emphasis was placed on “outside players” instead of the Haitian government to effect change.

Clinton at Grand Opening
As such, the jobs that Caracol was expected to make fall far below the reality on the ground. The post-earthquake efforts by the Clintons, particularly Caracol, was a damning failure that did nothing to lift the Haitians out of their misery but only lined the pockets of big firms. South Korean textile giant Sae-A Trading Co, which is the main employer at Caracol, gifted the Clinton Foundation with donations between $50,000 and $100,000.

The IHRC had little to show for all the money that came through except the Caracol industrial park. Not much reconstruction in Haiti was done. Where did all the money go? The Clinton Foundation has refuted claims that it had influence in the running of the IHRC, saying, “Since 2010, the Foundation has worked on the ground in Haiti with a range of partners – helping more than 7,500 farmers lift themselves out of poverty; improving the Haitian environment by planting more than 5 million trees and installing more than 400 KW of clean energy; and supporting women through literacy training and job skills for over 2,000 women,” when responding to the BBC.

It has been speculated some of the money that came through the commission found its way towards sponsoring Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign which she lost to the incumbent Donald Trump in 2016 but this is an area she has always been evasive about when probed. They become allegations without proof but to Haitians the more she dodges the question, the more she becomes suspicious and pernicious to the interests of Haitians.

It is estimated that the IHRC collected over $5.3 billion over two years and $9.9 billion in three years but Haitians still find themselves mired in abject poverty. A US Government Accountability Office report circumvented the issue by deciding not to find any iota of wrongdoing, but the gravity of the failure made them mention that the plans by the IHRC, co-chaired by Bill Clinton, “did not align with the Haitian priorities.”

The failure by the IHRC to rebuild Haiti is still haunting Haiti. The failed agricultural policies by the US made sure Haiti, a country that produced its own rice, would be reliant on US food to the extent that Haiti imports food from the US. Foreign aid is continuously pumped into Haiti, and no plan is made to bolster the country’s own capacity to rebuild and produce.

Haiti is still run on which business finds favor with the US, and while the Clintons were in charge of the US, they presided over all these failed policies. It is high time the onus to build Haiti shifts back to the government.

Haiti 10 years later: What happened to the billions pledged to help the people of Haiti?

ByValerie Helm Global NewsPosted January 20, 2020 1:42 pm Updated January 20, 2020 3:13 pm

Click to play video: ‘How were Canadian donations to Haiti 2010 earthquake relief spent?’
Haiti has received billions of dollars in relief over the years from around the world, after the devastating earthquake of 2010. So how were Canadian donations spent? – Jan 13, 2020
When Haiti was rocked by an earthquake on Jan. 12, 2010, images of despair and damage struck a chord with people around the world.

American journalist Jonathan M. Katz has closely analyzed the money pledged and how much was actually disbursed. He reports the global response totalled US$16.3 billion in pledges for rebuilding and recovery efforts. Other estimates, including from the L.A. Times, pin it at US$13.5 billion. In the month following the earthquake, Canadians donated $220 million to eligible organizations, which was matched by the federal government. From 2010 to 2018, Canada contributed $1.458 billion, which does not include the $220 donated by Canadians.

A small boy sits outside the tent he lives in with his family in Canaan, Haiti, January 2020. (Valerie Laillet)
A small boy sits outside the tent he lives in with his family in Canaan, Haiti, January 2020. (Valerie Laillet).
Photojournalist Barry Donnelly in Canaan, Haiti, Jan. 11, 2020. (Valerie Laillet)
Photojournalist Barry Donnelly in Canaan, Haiti, Jan. 11, 2020. (Valerie Laillet).
“We’re still living in that same moment in that same time,” Guillano Louis, who lives in Port-au-Prince, tells Global News on the streets of the capital.

READ MORE: Haiti 10 years later — Temporary tent city turns into makeshift community for 300,000

In the area of Canaan, a two-hour drive northeast of congested Port-au-Prince, some families still live in tents set up as a temporary measure for displaced residents after the earthquake. A family of seven sleeps in a threadbare tent, without access to running water, electricity or public services such as education. Some of the children were born in these conditions.

A family of seven lives inside this tent in Canaan, Haiti. (Valerie Laillet)
A family of seven lives inside this tent in Canaan, Haiti. (Valerie Laillet).
Canaan, Haiti. Jan. 11, 2020. (Valerie Laillet)
Canaan, Haiti. Jan. 11, 2020. (Valerie Laillet).
With 10 years gone by, there are questions from the international community about the lack of progress.

“The headline should be, ‘We screwed up,’” says Katz, reflecting on the global response.

He explains that the international community didn’t keep its promises.

Katz was inside his home in Haiti when it “buckled along with hundreds of thousands of others.” In his book, The Big Truck That Went By: How the World Came to Save Haiti and Left Behind a Disaster, he claims Canada disbursed $657 million in the 20 months since the quake, but only about two per cent was channelled to the Haitian government.

Global News reached out to Global Affairs Canada for confirmation of the figures provided by Katz. In a statement, the department says it is “unable to confirm this figure, as we are not aware of the methodology that was used to arrive at this amount.”

“Canada’s international assistance to Haiti is channelled through international or Canadian partners whose financial capacity and integrity have been verified,” the statement says.

Haiti 10 years later: What happened to the billions pledged to help the people of Haiti? – image
Haiti 10 years later: What happened to the billions pledged to help the people of Haiti? – image
Katz says there’s the notion that governments should not foolishly give money to countries filled with corruption. The Haitian government is widely accused of corruption, mismanagement and misinformation, right down to the number of people it says died in the earthquake. The government estimates 316,000 people died and 200,000 people were injured, figures many believe to be inflated. The BBC cites a draft report commissioned by the U.S. government that puts the death toll between 46,000 and 85,000. Many news outlets report 220,000 lives were lost.

In Port-au-Prince, many Haitians lament their current situation. A vendor selling patties, who did not want to be identified, told Global News she is fed up with the government’s inaction. She says she never saw any of the food and supplies distributed, and believes the government kept things for itself.

Louis, who works in security and was in Port-au-Prince at the time of the earthquake, echoes that sentiment. He says the earthquake is still fresh in the minds of Haitians.

“There’s been no real progress,” he said.

He believes the Haitian government is to blame and voiced that “someone needs to say something.”

Vendors in Port-au-Prince days before Haiti marks the 10th anniversary of the earthquake. (Courtesy: Barry Donnelly)
Vendors in Port-au-Prince days before Haiti marks the 10th anniversary of the earthquake. (Courtesy: Barry Donnelly).Courtesy: Barry Donnelly.
Guillano Louis walks by a vendor in Port-au-Prince. (Courtesy: Barry Donnelly)
Guillano Louis walks by a vendor in Port-au-Prince. (Courtesy: Barry Donnelly). Courtesy: Barry Donnely
In a statement released on the 10th anniversary of the earthquake, Haitian President Jovenel Moïse said the government still lacks “the basic infrastructure and services to support the people of our country.”

“The initial flurry of attention received from the international community quickly quieted down, with many of the financial pledges not delivered — causing devastating consequences for our recovery,” he said. “Little of the aid that was received ended up in Haitian hands and much of the money that was so generously given was not spent on the right projects and places.”

Katz says there’s a lot of noise about corruption in places like Haiti, but little of the aid is actually going to Haiti. Often, foreign donors choose to give to NGOs due to fears of corruption by the Haitian government.​ But some NGOs are also accused of mismanagement.

In 2015, NPR and ProPublica released their findings into the US$500 million raised by the American Red Cross for relief efforts in Haiti. ProPublica’s headline read: “How the Red Cross Raised Half a Billion Dollars for Haiti ­and Built Six Homes.” According to NPR, their investigation found a number of “poorly managed projects, questionable spending and dubious claims of success.”

Aid for Haiti
FILE – A Brazilian soldier of the MINUSTAH force gives food to Haitian children orphaned by the 2010 earthquake, at an orphanage in Port-au-Prince on March 3, 2013. VANDERLEI ALMEIDA/AFP/Getty Images
Katz explains that foreign aid is “a misnomer.”

“It’s usually not aid and it’s not given to foreign countries,” he said.

Katz says that with Canadian aid agencies, as with other aid agencies, a lot of the funds go to Canadian staff, salaries and travel and that the material is purchased in the donor country. He also says people believe that so much money should have fixed everything, but a lot of the money that was pledged wasn’t delivered.

FILE – This Monday, July 11, 2011, file photo shows silhouettes of UN peacekeepers from Brazil at the airport in Port-au-Prince, Haiti. (AP Photo/Eduardo Verdugo)
FILE – This Monday, July 11, 2011, file photo shows silhouettes of UN peacekeepers from Brazil at the airport in Port-au-Prince, Haiti. (AP Photo/Eduardo Verdugo).
NGOs poured into Haiti to assist, but it’s unclear how many have been on the ground. There are varying reports placing the number of NGOs in the country to as low as 3,000 and as high as 20,000. While NGOs play critical roles in providing basic necessities and health services to people facing difficult times, there are questions as to who oversees them.

The Centre for Global Development has been calling for the implementation of national guilds that would set a national mandatory requirement for NGOs to be registered, and possibly include a code of conduct that would keep their missions in line with one another. It also calls for practices such as annual reports and audited financial statements.​

Vocational school in Carrefour, Haiti, built in honour of RCMP Sgt. Mark Gallagher. (Courtesy: Antony Robart)
Vocational school in Carrefour, Haiti, built in honour of RCMP Sgt. Mark Gallagher. (Courtesy: Antony Robart).
Canadians responded in the days, months and years after the earthquake. A vocational school was built in memory of RCMP Sgt. Mark Gallagher, who died in the quake.

Gilles Rivard was the Canadian ambassador to Haiti from June 2008 to October 2010 and January 2014 to September 2014. He was in the country when the earthquake struck and says Canada had a fantastic team for the mission. He says Canadian teams brought in food, flew out some 6,000 Haitians and built a new road and a new hospital.

“Now people are complaining that this hospital is not functioning well,” Rivard said. He says if the “Haitian government doesn’t send doctors or nurses to take care of the poor people that suffered, there is nothing Canada can do. But we’re criticized for that.”

READ MORE: 10 years after, Michaelle Jean laments flawed response to devastating Haiti quake

FILE – Haitians struggled to rebuild after the earthquake rocked their fragile island in 2010.
FILE – Haitians struggled to rebuild after the earthquake rocked their fragile island in 2010.
Rivard points to issues with UN institutions. He says they “don’t always co-ordinate among themselves.”

“So you can imagine the situation,” he said. “And I think it’s a big problem; the co-ordination and also what we request from the country, the numerous reports, evaluation, audit and so on. They don’t have the capacity to respond.”

READ MORE: Child victims of Haiti earthquake find hope at orphanage with Canadian ties

Rivard says Haiti needs support from Canada and the U.S., who are main donors.

“Canada does a lot,” he said. “The problem is that if you don’t do enough, you’re going to be criticized. And then if you do too much, they’re going to be accused of telling Haitians what to do. That’s the dilemma.”

Rivard says there is a lot of fatigue from countries that are trying to help Haiti.

“You feel that there is no real progress in terms of governance, of economic situation and so on. So that’s that. See, that’s a vicious circle.”

Dorcius Fritzner speaks to Global News journalist Antony Robart (Courtesy: Valerie Laillet).
Dorcius Fritzner speaks to Global News journalist Antony Robart (Courtesy: Valerie Laillet). Courtesy: Barry Donnely
Father of two Dorcius Fritzner makes his living in Haiti’s capital by shuttling people on his motorbike. He told Global News he’s frustrated with the government. Fritzner says resources in Haiti are barren, likening it to a desert. Issues he points to include children not able to attend school, trouble accessing clean water, unemployment and gas shortages.

READ MORE: ‘We’re living that day’ — A decade later, Haitians remember devastating 2010 earthquake

FILE – A demonstrator walks past a burning barricade during anti-government protests in Port-au-Prince, Haiti, Feb. 15, 2019.
FILE – A demonstrator walks past a burning barricade during anti-government protests in Port-au-Prince, Haiti, Feb. 15, 2019.REUTERS/Ivan Alvarado
Port-au-Prince architect Philippe Léon says the political turmoil and instability has hindered rebuilding efforts. He points to the number of times the government has changed hands; three different presidents and an interim government in the last decade.

“One hundred to 150 years of construction was destroyed, including the presidential palace that was nearly 100 years old,” he said. “It wouldn’t take five to 10 years to rebuild.”

Haiti’s Notre-Dame cathedral is still in ruins 10 years later. (Valerie Laillet)
Haiti’s Notre-Dame cathedral is still in ruins 10 years later. (Valerie Laillet).
Janurary 12, 2020. (Valerie Laillet)
Janurary 12, 2020. (Valerie Laillet).
Still, he says, not much has been done. Léon says a lot of the new construction has been in the private sector and a lot of it is half-built. He points to projects like the Village Lumane Casimir, with 1,500 units. Only about half of the units are built, due to a lack of funds.

How were Canadian donations to Haiti 2010 earthquake relief spent?
Child victims of Haiti earthquake find hope at orphanage with Canadian ties
Léon says Haitians have been building out of necessity. Instead of waiting for the government, people have been building their homes over time.

READ MORE: Haiti earthquake survivor goes from orphanage to Oklahoma business analyst

More than one million people were displaced by the earthquake. In Canaan, about two hours from the capital, tents were set up to temporarily house displaced residents. But today, some people still live in the very tents that were put up 10 years ago. Others have built homes out of whatever they could find; wood and tin homes cover the mountains. A number of residents have built their homes out of cement blocks. People in Canaan have built a makeshift community with homes out of various materials, schools for those who can afford it, churches and grocery stores.

Léon says the mountains surrounding Port-au-Prince are covered with dwellings, with no roads or order. He says when you fly into or out of Haiti at night, you can see all of the lights emanating from homes, snake roads and lack of organization.

Katz says when it comes to Haiti, people often try to find a single villain. Bill and Hillary Clinton are often singled out. But Katz says “what failed was the system.”

“This should be a wakeup call.”

He says inequality, much more than the earthquake, is responsible for the deaths of hundreds of thousands of people.

National police shoot at protesters demanding the resignation of Haitian President Jovenel Moise near the presidential palace in Port-au-Prince, Haiti, Wednesday, Feb. 13, 2019. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP, Dieu Nalio Chery
National police shoot at protesters demanding the resignation of Haitian President Jovenel Moise near the presidential palace in Port-au-Prince, Haiti, Wednesday, Feb. 13, 2019. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP, Dieu Nalio Chery. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP, Dieu Nalio Chery
Over the last year, Léon hasn’t worked on any housing projects due to the political instability and violence in his country. He said there’s no work to be had in new builds. Instead, he’s been working on building fences, steel doors and other measures to make homes impenetrable by rioters. At his office, his windows are covered in wood to fend off rocks and Molotov cocktails.

Léon says the problem with Haiti is that the country is “managing misery.” Poverty, a lack of education and fighting for political power are some of the main issues. He says a lot of things other countries take for granted, Haiti cannot. Everything from water to electricity to roads are systems people have to build themselves, and in challenging circumstances.

Léon believes the development of a country “can only happen through its own people, through people who believe in it and support it.” He says the 10th anniversary of the earthquake is time for a ‘bilan,’ an assessment on the progress so far: “counting the blessings and counting your mistakes.” Léon, who is now in his 60s, says he hopes to see a better Haiti himself.

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