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.

April 20 Deadline for May 3-4 Delta Events--Congressional Candidates & Delta Economy

Posted on April 18, 2012 at 11:47 AM

The early registration deadline for the May 3-4 Delta conference on job creation and economic recovery is this Friday, April 20. We have expanded the numbers to accommodate the current level of 130 RSVPs, but the space is starting to get very tight.

Please note that we start the substantive schedule promptly at 4:45 p.m. on Thursday evening, May 3 at the Clinton School of Public Service to hear from Congressman Tim Griffin (R-Arkansas) and attorney Herb Rule of the Rose law firm, Democratic candidate for the Second District about what they would do if elected to promote economic recovery and job creation.

There will be food and drinks available at the Clinton School session, which goes from 4:45 to 8 p.m. and is hosted by James “Skip” Rutherford, Dean of the University of Arkansas Clinton School of Public Service.

We will hear from the First District Congressional candidates on Friday, May 4 at the Clinton Library Great Hall. That session is from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

We will hear from Congressional candidates of both parties for the First District and Second District of Arkansas, and focus on job creation/economic recovery, renewable energy, energy efficiency, green jobs, the connection between education (especially literacy) and economic development, hunger and nutrition.

A rough draft of the agenda is below but there are always last-minute changes to the schedule dictated by some of the speakers’ schedules.

For more information contact Lee Powell at 202-360-6347 or or Desha County Judge Mark McElroy at 870-877-2426.

Registration fees are $100 until after the April 20 early registration. After April 20 registration fees go up to $150. Please make out the check to “Delta Caucus” and mail to:

Delta Caucus

5030 Purslane Place

Waldorf, MD 20601

GROUP HOTEL: Comfort Inn at the Clinton Library, Little Rock, Arkansas: Please call the hotel at (501) 687-7700 and say you are with the Delta Caucus group to get the lower group rate of $82 a night for a standard room, for the nights of Thursday, May 3 and Friday, May 4. The deadline to get the group rate is Friday, April 20.

Many people may only want to stay for the one night of Thursday, May 3, because the conference begins at 5 p.m. on that evening and ends the next afternoon, May 4 at about 3:45 p.m. People can check out of the hotel on the morning of May 4 in the morning and store their luggage there, and then come back and pick up the luggage that afternoon after the conference ends.

Rough Draft of Agenda:

Delta Grassroots Caucus, May 3-4, 2012 Clinton Presidential Center, Little Rock, Arkansas Four Cornerstones: Jobs/Energy/ Hea lth/Education


WELCOME: James “Skip” Rutherford, Dean of the University of Arkansas Clinton School of Public Service

Lee Powell, Executive Director, Delta Grassroots Caucus

4:45 p.m. to 5 p.m.–Congressman Tim Griffin (R-Arkansas)–speaking on his plans for job creation and economic recovery

5 p.m. to 5:20 p.m.–Second Congressional District candidate Herb Rule, (D-Little Rock), attorney and former state legislator, on his positions for economic development in Arkansas and the Delta region

5: 20 to 5:27 p.m.–Mayor Sheldon Day, Thomasville, Alabama

5:27 to 5:40 p.m.–Oscar Castaneda, Heifer International’s Director of Programs for the USA, Canada and Latin America

5:40 to 5:50 p.m.–Alternate Federal Co-Chairman Mike Marshall (Sikeston, Missouri), Delta Regional Authority

5:50 to 6 p.m.–Alan Gumbel, Metropolitan Inter-Faith Association, Memphis, Tennessee (Nutrition and literacy initiatives)

6 p.m. to 6: 15 p.m.–Joe Quinn, Wal-Mart Corporate Affairs senior executive, on Wal-Mart’s activities promoting nutrition in the Delta and placing more stores in food desert areas

6:15 to 6:35 p.m.–US Senator John Boozman, Arkansas

6:35 to 6: 45 p.m.–Presentation of Inspire Hope Institute Award to Johnnie Bolin, former State Representative, long-time executive director of the Arkansas Good Roads Transportation Council; presented jointly by the Delta Grassroots Caucus and the Inspire Hope Institute based in Jonesboro, Arkansas, Chair, Laymon Jones, in appreciation of Johnnie Bolin’s many years of distinguished public service to the economic development of Arkansas and the Greater Delta Region.

6:45 to 8 p.m.–Nutrition: Preventing Child and Adult Obesity, Diabetes and other Nutrition-related Health Issues, and Help for Limited Resource Farmers

  1. Moderator and speaker: Tamidra Marable, US Domestic Programs Manager, Heifer International; manager of east Arkansas Delta activities for Heifer

  2. Georgianna Tuuri, professor of nutrition, Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge, Louisiana

  3. Melissa Rice, Cape Girardeau Feeding America food bank, serving 16 southeast Missouri Delta counties

  4. Kim Sanders, Director, Center for Rural Health and Social Service Development, Southern Illinois, University, Carbondale, Illinois


8 a.m. to 10 a.m.–Renewable energy, energy retrofits and efficiency, green jobs

  1. Chad Nobles, Siemens Corp., Moderator and Speaker

  2. Stacy Bullock, Murray State University, western Kentucky, Program Manager for West Kentucky Agbioworks

  3. Elizabeth Hood, Arkansas State University, Arkansas BioSciences Institute; Distinguished Professor, College of Agriculture and Technology

  4. David Baker, Future Fuels, biodiesel and other renewable energy initiatives company, with a plant employing 550 people in Batesville, Arkansas

  5. Clark Wiedetz, Siemens, Inc., Director of Renewable Energy

  6. Martha Jane Murray, Clinton Foundation, Manager for Home Energy Assistance Loan (HEAL) program

Steve Patterson, Arkansas Advanced Energy Association

Brief presentations summarizing factual results from Crittenden Memorial Hospital, West Memphis, Arkansas, and DeSoto County, Mississippi, about the value of the energy retrofits projects that led to major savings on their energy bills

10 a.m. to 10:20 a.m.–State Representative Clark Hall, Phillips County, Arkansas; Candidate for First Congressional District, Arkansas, explaining his plan for job creation/economic recovery in the east Arkansas Delta

10:20 A.M. TO 12:20 p.m.–We do not have the times yet when President Clinton and Gov. Mike Beebe will speak, although they have spoken every year and we expect them to this year

10:20 to 10:50 a.m.–President Bill Clinton (Live presentation over the Clinton Library audio system)(Tentative time–may change)

10:50 to 11:10 a.m.–Congressman Rick Crawford (Invited to speak over the audio system)

11:10 a.m. to 11:30 a.m.–Scott Ellington, prosecutor, Jonesboro, Arkansas; First District Congressional District

11:10 to 11:30 a.m.–Gov. Mike Beebe (introduced by Speaker Robert Moore of the Arkansas House of Representatives; D-Arkansas City)(Tentative)

11:30 a.m. to 11:50 a.m.–Congressman Mike Ross

11:50 a.m. to 12:20 p.m.–Additional time to be used if needed for late morning speakers

LUNCHEON–12:20 TO 1:20 P.M.

Media announcements on ongoing constructive initiatives in the Delta

  1. Daryl Dulaney, CEO, Siemens Corp. energy, infrastructure and infrastructure

  2. USDA Assistant Secretary for Administration Pearlie Reed

  3. President Fitzgerald Hill, Arkansas Baptist College (Introduced by Spencer Lucker, Clinton School of Public Service graduate student and intern at the Delta Regional Authority)


  1. President Fitzgerald Hill, speaker and moderator

  2. Student or professor at Arkansas Baptist College with ties to the Delta and success story regarding literacy

  3. Jennifer Oglesby Holman, executive director, Arkansas Literacy Councils

  4. Deborah Duncan Owens, professor of reading, Arkansas State University

  5. Obadiah Simmons, Grambling State University

  6. Save the Children–Shannon Maxwell from Mississippi or Amy Fecher from Arkansas

2:40 P.M. TO 3:10 P.M.–Health Care Issues Presentation by Albert Nylander of Delta State University and John Green of Ole Miss

Albert Nylander, Delta State University, Cleveland, Mississippi, Dean of Graduate Studies and Continuing Education, professor of sociology and community development

John Green, University of Mississippi, Oxford, Mississippi, Director, Center for Population Studies; Director, Institute for Community-Based Research; professor of sociology

3:10 p.m. to 3:20 p.m.–I-69 and Transportation Infrastructure presentation by Josh Tubbs, western Kentucky, Marshall County Economic Development Dept.–update on progress on I-69 Corridor and other infrastructure issues

Gary Latanich, First Congressional District Candidate and Professor of Economics, Arkansas State University, 3:30 to 3:50 p.m.

Sponsors for Delta Grassroots Caucus

Lead Sponsors

Nucor Yamato Steel and Nucor Steel of Arkansas

Major Co-Sponsors

Siemens Industry, Inc.

Heifer International

National Housing Assistance Council, Washington, DC

McGehee Industrial Foundation

Southeast Missouri Delta Grassroots Partners

Lincoln County Industrial Development Corporation


Grambling State University, Louisiana

Desha County Judge Mark McElroy

Inspire Hope Institute, Laymon Jones, Chairman, Jonesboro, Arkansas

Arkansas Economic Development Commission

AvanTech Services, Clifton Avant, President

Mississippi County (AR) Economic Opportunity Commission

Cooperative Baptist Fellowship of Arkansas

Blytheville-Gosnell Regional Airport Authority

Southern Bancorp

Helena National Bank

The Institute for Community-Based Research

The City of Dumas, Arkansas

The City of Pine Bluff, Arkansas

Delta Grassroots Caucus Partners

Last but not least, we would like to thank the hundreds of people and organizations who made smaller contributions in the range of $100, $50 or $25 in the form of annual membership dues, registration fees, and other contributions. For a grassroots regional coalition, we need to have a diversified, broad base of financial support from large numbers of relatively small contributions. The large number of these contributions really adds up to a major part of our budget, and we could not do our work without these donations.