Greetings! I am deeply honored to serve as President of the National Black Prosecutors Association for a second term.

Last year was filled with great accomplishments for our organization! We filed for, and have just received, 501(c)3 status as a charitable organization! We raised the highest amount sponsor dollars for our annual conference in history of the organization, leaving us fiscally healthy, with the ability to reinvest in our regions, as well as in our communities. Our new program directed at young people, Real Talk, expanded to 8 cities nationally, including Cleveland, Baton Rouge, Atlanta, Miami, Rochester, Boulder, Pittsburgh, and Chicago. We worked with teens, leaving with them positive messages about law enforcement as well as the legal system. The NBPA endorsed several pieces of legislation, including Justice for Victims of Trafficking Act, Campus Accountability Safety Act, Ban the Box, and the Smarter Sentencing Act. As NBPA President, I participated in conjunction with the National District Attorneys Association on a day on Capitol Hill, ensuring that our organization had a presence and can serve as a resource to lawmakers.  Additionally, we endorsed Loretta Lynch for Attorney General, and lobbied the South Carolina Legislature for the removal of the Confederate flag. Lastly, I am pleased to say 2014 brought a revamped website, increased membership and a new national awareness of NBPA through being quoted in the New York Times, Essence, Slate, WPIX/Channel 11 New York, Baltimore Sun and other publications.

The theme for my final term is cultivating, promoting and protecting — cultivating and promoting our talent as well as protecting what is ours. To this end, the goals are to have accurate statistics on African American prosecutors, fundraise and distribute an NBPA scholarship and fellowship at the 2016 conference, create

tangible member benefits, trademark our NBPA logo, address dearth of African American elected prosecutors through mentorship of those who wish to run or seek appointment, and expand the Real Talk program. We must continue  member growth and our forward momentum, as well as our legislative and social justice presence.

Mark your calendars! The 33rd Annual NBPA Conference and Job Fair will be held July 10-16, 2016 at the Hilton Ballpark in St. Louis. Our newly formed St. Louis chapter is excited to welcome us and show us a great time! If you missed DC2015, see the highlights here – it was truly amazing.

Thank you for all of your support, input and ideas for the past year — keep them coming! Always feel free to email me at melbapearson@miamisao.com.

Yours in service,

Melba V. Pearson

NBPA President

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