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.

Sept. 30 Is Registration Deadline for Delta Event in Memphis, Oct. 17-18

Posted on September 20, 2013 at 01:04 PM

We are only 10 days away from the early registration deadline of Sept. 30 for the Oct. 17-18 Delta Grassroots conference at the Memphis Agri-Center International.

We will have pressing issues on SNAP nutrition, agriculture and the farm bill, job creation/economic recovery, resolving issues of implementation of federal health care reform, and hear from the hotly contested US Senate race in Sen. Mark Pryor and Rep. Tom Cotton, and gubernatorial candidates Asa Hutchinson and Mike Ross in Arkansas, Members of Congress, Mayor A. C. Wharton of Memphis, and grassroots leaders from all eight states from Missouri and Illinois to New Orleans.

If you want to be assured of space please register ASAP before the Sept. 30 early registration deadline. We now have 126 RSVPs and the number grows daily. Registration information is below in this email–you register by mailing in the registration fee checks.

Group hotel and basic schedule information are also listed below–the group hotel deadline to get the discount rate is also coming up soon on Oct. 3.

The start of the conference itself is only a little over three weeks away.

We will hear from US Sen. Mark Pryor and US Rep. Tom Cotton, the candidates from each party for the Arkansas Senate race that is receiving not just regional but national attention because it could have an impact on which side is the majority in the Senate.

The Arkansas governor’s race is receiving intense interest as well and we will hear from Mike Ross (D-AR) and Asa Hutchinson (R-AR), as well as Mayor Wharton, and Rep. Steve Cohen (invited), who did a great job at our conference in West Memphis last year.

Job creation, SNAP, agriculture, rural development in the farm bill, issues regarding implementation, delay, or even a possible shutdown of the federal government over federal health care reform, are the subjects about which we are hearing the most concern now across the region.

Job creation, retention and workforce development are related to many other issues, such as transportation, broadband expansion and other infrastructure improvements, renewable energy, energy efficiency and green jobs, and Delta heritage tourism, and these will receive substantial attention at the conference.

We plan to do a fundraising effort for the National Civil Rights Museum, since they are an internationally recognized institution and civil rghts and diversity are vital for our coalition.

We will also give an update on progress regarding the legislation to allow the historic steamboat, the Delta Queen, to resume its travels on the Mississippi River and its tributaries. That legislation has passed the House Transportation Committee.


The early registration deadline is Sept. 30, 2013. After that, you may register if there is still space, but the late registration fees go up to $150.

The higher late fee is the only leverage we have to provide an incentive for people to get the registration fee checks in on time.

Our bills start coming due before the conference, and it creates logistical problems and delays if many people wait to register at the front desk when we are getting the program started.

We have to ask for registration fees from everybody–INCLUDING PANELISTS AND MOST SPEAKERS except the “main speakers” like Members of Congress, gubernatorial candidates, Mayor Wharton, etc., because these fees are an essential part of our budget.

Registration fee levels are:

$125 for those who have paid their annual membership dues

$100 for those who have paid their annual membership dues

GROUP DISCOUNT: If you can get a group of five or more from your local area, we offer a group discount down to $75 each, in order to provide incentives to bring new partners into the regional coalition.

You register by mailing in the registration fee checks. Please make out the checks to “Delta Caucus” and mail by or before Sept. 30 to:

Delta Caucus

5030 Purslane Place

Waldorf, MD 20601

Again, you do NOT register on the website–you register by mailing in the registration fee checks.



Thursday, Oct. 17, 2013, 4:30 p.m. to 7:45 p.m., Memphis Agri-Center International (This is a key substantive session and is NOT a reception.)


Friday, Oct. 18, 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.

Rep. Mark McElroy’s informal get-together at group hotel bar, Courtyard by Marriott at Germantown, Thursday, Oct. 17, 3:45 p.m. to 4:15 p.m., for those who would like a beverage before heading over to the start of the conference at 4:30 p.m. at the Agri-Center.

Rep. McElroy may do his famous Elvis Presley impersonation, unless he gets enough bribes not to do so.


We have a group discount rate at the Courtyard by Marriott at Memphis-Germantown that you can get by calling the Courtyard at (901) 751-0230 and saying you are with the Delta Caucus on or before Oct. 3, 2013.

There are Kings for $104 and doubles for $109. Most people just stay for the night of Oct. 17, but we also have the group rate for Oct. 18.

We have food and drinks at the opening session on Thursday, Oct. 17, but many people like to have a big dinner on their own after the opening session ends at 7:45 p.m. There is a good restaurant and bar at the Courtyard by Marriott, which is very close to the Agri-Center. There is also a fine restaurant in the Agri-Center complex called The Butcher Shop. Many people eat right after the opening session either there or at the group hotel for additional socializing and networking opportunities.

The number of attendees will be anywhere from 135 to 175 or more. We will have lunch on Friday, Oct. 18 and some food and drinks for the opening session on Thursday evening, Oct. 17 from 4:30 p.m. to 7:45 p.m.

The opening session is an important, substantive session with important speakers and is NOT a reception.

We plan to end by 3:30 p.m. on Friday, Oct. 18 to give plenty of time for people who would like to spend Friday evening, Oct. 18, and stay over until Saturday morning, Oct. 19 for seeing some of the sights Memphis has to offer, such as the National Civil Rights Museum, the blues and jazz attractions on Beale Street, Graceland for Elvis Presley fans, and other tourist attractions.

Thanks very much–Lee Powell, Delta Grassroots Caucus executive director; (202) 360-6347; Rep. Mark McElroy, Vice Chairman, (870) 222-8217