Report to the Branch
10 August 2017 General Membership Meeting

"80 percent of success is showing up" — Woody Allen

My personal thanks to everyone who showed up at last night's very successful Reno-Sparks NAACP meeting.

We were enlightened and entertained by the culinary advice imparted by multi-talented attorneys Christine Jones Brady and Kelli Gallimore. I now know much more about baking and serving brownies than ever I thought I would. Or wanted.

Here's a written summary of my truncated oral presentation.

DUNCAN-TRANER COMMUNITY LIBRARY COMMITTEE. I convened and chaired a short-notice meeting upon belatedly learning of the facility's 20th anniversary celebration which took place last Sunday, Aug. 6.

The event featured contests, drawings for prizes and free ice cream sundaes. The first 80 kids got free backpacks. To go with them, longtime librarian Marilyn Jones had new books (yes, they still print those things), free from Barnes & Noble.

I moved an item in the Sparks Tribune as did Dennis Myers in the Reno News & Review. (See the front page of RenoSparksNAACP.org/) I distributed an announcement to all media and lobbied the Reno Gazette-Journal to no avail. They have a 20 year-old photo of the library's modular buildings being delivered with Ms. Jones and library committee chair Darryl Feemster standing atop. Even that could not interest them. Had we been given more notice, we could have made a bigger splash. Alas, love's labour's lost.

Irony alert: The name of the library is mis-spelled in the AT&T phone book. (Yes, they still print one for every entity and business save residential users who apparently don't matter anymore.)

POLITICAL ACTION: The Texas bandidos who run the Washoe County mass transit system narrowly avoided a Teamsters Union bus strike. I ran out of time to put together free movie passes for kids at the library. Had I scored, I was prepared to approach my dear friends at the Regional Transportation Commission for bus passes so the children could easily get to theaters. (Perhaps it was best that the lead time was too short.)

OUR BIG EVENT. The Reno-Sparks NAACP's 72nd Annual Freedom Fund Awards Banquet has been scheduled for Saturday, 14 Oct. 2017, at Circus Circus, a union shop. Of course. At this early juncture, we have generated more major sponsors than we've had in recent years or perhaps longer. Well done, Mdme. President. (Doors to the Mandalay Ballroom will open at 5:

THE RELUCTANT SEPTUAGENARIAN OBITUARIAN. This year has brought seven deaths of individuals who were either members or close to the Branch, including some longtime officers and presidents. Their formal obituaries, two of which I wrote, are all linked to the front page of RenoSparksNAACP.org/ An eighth demise came Tuesday with the passing of perhaps the area's greatest liberal, UNR Journalism Professor Emeritus and my Sparks Tribune colleague in columny Jake Highton.

May they all rest in peace from work well done and lives well lived.

The former presidents we lost were Eddie B. Scott (1961-64, 1967-68) and Elder William Moon (1991-92). Mrs. Jane Moon was hospitalized shortly after her husband's memorial service but has recovered.

TOP COP: Reno Police Commander Oliver Miller, a Branch member, is officially the best cop in northern Nevada according to the area's best newspaper. (See page 19 of the Aug. 10 edition of the Reno News & Review.) That's a good sign for next month's community seminar, eh wot?

HUMAN RIGHTS. After well over a year of creative procrastination, the Reno City Council recently established a human rights commission. I participated in several formative meetings as did other Branch officers. It appears to have been weakened. The Washoe County Commission has been working along the same line and at one point we generated interest for a regional cooperative body but that has since fallen by the wayside. I have inquired of the County Commission for an update. As always, Sparks remains stuck in the 19th Century.

WE DON'T NEED NO EDUCATION. The Reno Gazette-Journal printed the Washoe County School District's glowing press releases about its continually improving graduation rates without a word about the ongoing dismal performance of African-American students. Keep an eye on NevadaLabor.com's Pink Floyd pages.

The above report would have been considerably shorter had I talked it instead of typed it, but it's such socko sparkling prose, I hope you haven't noticed.

Thanks for your time. Stay cool in the heat but never hesitate to bring heat.

Be well. Raise hell. / Esté bien. Haga infierno.
(Pardon my Spanglish.)

Respectfully submitted,

Andrew Barbano, First Vice-President, Political Action Chair and Retiring Webmaster
NAACP Reno-Sparks Branch No. 1112
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