2022 in Review
2022 was truly about The Power of Us!
From our action against frivolous School Board recalls to our inaugural activities and events, from our many marches and demonstrations to the return of our Freedom Fund Gala, we showed one another what a commUNITY can do.
If you'd like to join our mission of Building an Equal Future Together, please become a Branch member today!
June 2022 - Our Juneteenth March & Celebration
July 2022 - Our Inaugural Basketball Tournament & Block Party
Took part in a hybrid event for march at the Loudoun County Courthouse to celebrate the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
Action Against School Board Recall
Joined the case and held press conferences to successfully fight against the frivolous petition to recall to LCPS School Board and uphold democracy and free, fair elections.
State Senate Invocation
On February 4th, President Thomas delivered the Virginia State Senate Invocation in honor of Black History Month. At this time, members of our Executive Committee met with the Virginia State Secretary of the Commonwealth, the Secretary of Education, and the Secretary of Natural Resources.
In October, NAACP - Loudoun Branch Executive Committee members were able to meet with the Secretary of Education again, as well as the Secretary of Labor.
First Health & Wellness Fair
On February 12th, we held our first annual Health & Wellness Fair which featured local businesses that promote movement, maintenance, nutrition, and mindfulness. We had keynote speakers from Howard University and INOVA Health, and a mobile vaccination clinic provided COVID vaccinations to participants.
Equity in Education
Our VP Christian Yohannes was featured on a February episode of Last Week Tonight with John Oliver which focused on the attention around Critical Race Theory and how race is (and isn’t) being taught in public schools. In November, we successfully lobbied to delay action on Governor Youngkin’s new draft of the Virginia SOLs which were racist, factually incorrect, and reflected explicit political bias; President Thomas made an appearance on MSNBC to discuss it with Symone Sanders.
On March 24th, our branch celebrated its 82nd birthday! The Loudoun County Branch of the NAACP was chartered on March 24, 1940 around the issue of equal education. At the urging of Attorney Charles Hamilton Houston (Dean of Howard University School of Law, Legal Counsel to the NAACP and later, mentor to Mr. Thurgood Marshall), a local beautician (Marie Medley) sent away for its charter and became the first president of the Loudoun County Chapter of the NAACP. It was a wonderful evening celebrating 82 years of advocacy, community, and good trouble!
New Supreme Court Justice
Successfully advocated for Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson as the 116th Supreme Court justice. Justice Jackson is the first Black woman to serve on the nation's high court.
We offered our annual NAACP Loudoun Branch Scholarship to provide financial assistance and encouragement to high school graduates of color, specifically African American/Black students in Loudoun County. Recipients received $1,000 to aid in funding their post high school aspirations. With more than $20,000 awarded, 2022 was our best year for scholarships yet!
Successfully held our 8th annual golf tournament at Raspberry Falls Golf & Hunt Club – it was a beautiful day with perfect weather and a great turnout, and we raised more than $10,000 for Loudoun County student scholarships!
March for Our Lives
Partnered with Loudoun4All, Loudoun Moms Demand Action, and Loudoun County Democrats for the Loudoun March for Our Lives on June 11th.
Northern Virginia Baha’i Center’s Race Amity Day
Several of our Branch members attended and participated in the Northern Virginia Baha’i Center's Race Amity Day program. This multi-faith outreach event focused on the value of diversity and active understanding. It takes all of us!
Power of Allyship
Held additional series of the Power of Allyship Workshops to keep making space for our community to have difficult conversations on what it means to be an ally.
Held a march with over a hundred members of the community through downtown Leesburg to celebrate how far we've come on the observed federal holiday for Juneteenth, with Senator Tim Kaine as the keynote speaker. In honor of Juneteenth we also hosted the Loudoun Shops Black pop-up market at Blend Coffee Bar where vendors from LoudounShopsBlack.com showcased their handmade products, home goods, and gourmet food.
We held our inaugural annual Basketball Tournament and Block Party in July, raising over $1000 for scholarships and over 40 brand new backpacks for kids with supplies so that they were ready for school when they walked through the door.
New Historical Markers
In July, along with Supervisor Caleb Kershner (R-Catoctin) and the NOVA Parks board of directors, President Thomas was in attendance to unveil two new historical markers that provide information on enslaved people who lived on the Temple Hall Farm property. In September, the first sign on the new Journey to Freedom Heritage Trails was unveiled as part of an ongoing project to broaden the awareness of Loudoun’s rich African American history; the sign shares stories of the Oak Grove community, which African Americans built after purchasing the land from white landowners following emancipation.
Annual Wreath Laying
Held the 8th Annual Enslaved Memorial and Wreath Laying Ceremony at Belmont. We were able to stand together in remembrance of the ancestors and in celebration of four centuries of resilience.
New Student NAACP Chapter
Supported the formation of Riverside High School’s new NAACP Chapter; the chapter was designed to help students develop their leadership & community organizing skills by advocating for civil rights, social justice and developing programs to ensure diverse, equitable and inclusive outcomes for all.
Freedom Fund Gala
In October we held our annual Freedom Fund Gala at Lansdowne Resort. Robin Hamilton, an Emmy-award winning television host and producer, was our keynote speaker, and many various local prominent figures were in attendance.
Prayer Vigil with Loudoun Interfaith Bridges
Following heinous acts of racism, community terrorism, and vandalism, we came together with allies to call on our law enforcement officers, our elected officials, our faith & civic leaders, our parents, our students, and our community at large to recommit themselves to protecting the civil and equal rights of all persons and to eliminating race-based discrimination in Loudoun and throughout the United States.
In December, we elected our 2023-2024 Branch Officers and held our swearing-in ceremony + holiday celebration at Matchbox in One Loudoun.