The Delta Grassroots Caucus (DGC) is a broad coalition of grassroots leaders in the eight-state Delta region. DGC is also a founding partner of the Economic Equality Caucus,
which advocates for economic equality across the USA.

Please RSVP for Jan. 30-31, 2008 Delta Caucus Conference, Little Rock, Arkansas

Posted on November 30, 2007 at 01:23 PM

Gov. Mike Beebe, the major Presidential campaigns, the Hon. Rodney Slater, Attorney General Dustin McDaniel, and leaders of all eight Delta states from southern Illinois to New Orleans will be on the agenda for the Jan. 30-31, 2008 annual Delta Grassroots Caucus conference in Little Rock, Arkansas. Space is starting to fill up and we already have 127 RSVPs, so please RSVP to Lee Powell at or (202) 360-6347 if you would like to come.

We will have nonpartisan forums for the Presidential candidates to state what they would do for the Delta’s economic future if elected President. We expect participation from either the candidates themselves or representatives of the campaigns of Gov. Mike Huckabee, Sen. Hillary Clinton, Sen. Fred Thompson, Sen. Barack Obama, Mayor Rudy Guiliani, Gov. Mitt Romney, Gov. Bill Richardson and Sen. John Edwards. It should be a NATIONAL and not just a regional priority for the next President to do a much better job of addressing economic problems in our region.

In addition to the nonpartisan forums for Presidential candidates, we will have speakers from all eight states on several panels during the two-day conference, including:

  • Mayor Brad Cole, Carbondale, Illinois
  • Minnie Bommer, a long-time community and economic development expert and advocate for the Delta region from Covington, Tennessee in the west Tennessee Delta
  • Mayor Mike Marshall, Sikeston, Missouri
  • President Randy Dunn of Murray State University in western Kentucky
  • former Congressman Bill Alexander, who is working on some projects concerning –alternative energy
  • Mayor Sheldon Day, Thomasville, Alabama
  • President Les Wyatt, Arkansas State University
  • Rex Nelson, Alternate Federal Co-Chair, Delta Regional Authority
  • President Vivian Presley, Coahoma Community College, Clarksdale, Mississippi
  • Clifton Avant, Entergy Corp., Louisiana
  • Tiffany Hardrick, principal of a new charter school serving the low-income neighborhoods that were devastated by Hurricane Katrina in New Orleans, Louisiana
  • Mayor Bobby Hardrick, Madison, Arkansas (he is the father of Tiffany Hardrick who now works in New Orleans, so that is an interesting father-daughter combination)
  • Janis Kearney, former White House aide and author of books on the Delta region and President Clinton and African Americans
  • One of the graduate students from the Clinton School of Public Service on their activities in the Delta, as indicated by James “Skip” Rutherford, Dean of the Clinton School
  • Joe Belden, Associate Director of the Housing Assistance Council based in Washington, DC, who will talk about housing issues;
  • Representative of Nucor Yamato Steel and Nucor Steel of Arkansas, Blytheville, Arkansas
  • Larry Williams, director of the Delta Citizens Alliance, based in Greenville, Mississippi;
  • Alan McVey, Arkansas State University, Executive Director of the Delta Center for Economic Development

The space if starting to fill up now. If you can RSVP to this email we will put you down on the list and reserve spaces for you. We already have 127 RSVPS and they are coming in fast now. If you could send in the registration fee fairly soon that would also help, because it creates a logjam if everybody pays the registration at the front desk. The information on the registration, schedule, group hotel and other specifics is right below. I will be very glad if you can take part again this year. You might want to print out this email so you’ll have all this info.

The opening session will be Wednesday, Jan. 30, 2008, from 5 to 8 p.m. at the Little Rock Regional Chamber of Commerce, and the main session will be at the Great Hall of the Clinton Presidential Library in Little Rock on Thursday, Jan. 31, 2008 from 9 a.m. to about 5 p.m.

The main sessions have been quite crowded the last two or three years, and our space is limited. We have to do this on a first-come, first-served basis. To reserve a place, please send your registration fee check of $85, made out to “Delta Grassroots Caucus,” with a note “For 2008 conference,” and mail the check to:

Delta Grassroots Caucus (Attention: Lee Powell) 5030 Purslane Place Waldorf, MD 20601

The group hotel for the January 30-31, 2008 Mississippi Delta Grassroots Caucus annual conference will be the Comfort Inn &Suites Downtown at the Clinton Library in Little Rock, Arkansas. We have negotiated a reduced group rate of $76 a night, and you would only need to stay the night of Jan. 30. You can get from the Comfort Inn to the Clinton Library by a short taxi ride and the hotel also has a shuttle. Information on the group hotel is below.

To get the reduced rate of $76 for the night of January 30, call the Comfort Inn at (501) 687-7700 and say you are with the Delta Caucus and call BEFORE JANUARY 7, 2008. After that the rate goes up and you are not guaranteed a room if the hotel gets full. We have the group rates for January 30 and January 31, in case anyone wants to stay for a second night in Little Rock. However, you would only need the room for the night of Jan. 30, 2008. You can check out the morning of Jan. 31, store your luggage and go to the main session at the Clinton Library, and then come back that afternoon to pick up your luggage.

With the reduced rate and only needing to stay one night, this will help keep down your costs for the conference.

Please visit our newly renovated website at

This conference will be on a Wednesday and a Thursday, as opposed to the Thursday-Friday timing in previous years. Hopefully this will lead to a larger crowd at the last session on Thursday afternoon.

For our planning purposes, it is very important to know how many people are coming as early as possible. Last year the total turnout was about 300 people who came to at least part of the conference, with the packed crowd at the main luncheon over 220 people. Thanks very much. Lee Powell, Executive Director, MDGC (202) 360-6347