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.

Agenda, Late Registration, for Oct. 19-20 Delta Caucus, Little Rock, Arkansas

Posted on October 11, 2017 at 11:47 AM

Below is the latest draft of the agenda for the Delta Caucus in Little Rock, Oct. 19-20, 2017.

We can squeeze in a limited number of late registrations if you RSVP immediately by e-mail or call at 202-360-6347.

We have Gov. Asa Hutchinson, US Sen. John Boozman, Congressman Rick Crawford, Congressman French Hill, Chelsea Clinton, Vice Chair of the Clinton Foundation speaking by live call-in, Dean Todd Shields of the University of Arkansas Fulbright College of Arts and Sciences, and nonprofits, business leaders, universities and colleges, and grassroots advocates from the 8-state region from southern Illinois and Missouri down to New Orleans.

Basic schedule, late registration and group hotel information are below in this email, followed by the agenda.


If you call very soon, there may still be rooms available at the group hotel Holiday Inn Presidential. Call the hotel at 501-375-2100 and say you are with the Delta Caucus group for the night of Oct. 19.

The rate was $99 as of Oct. 10, but it will go up if you call later, or the hotel may run out of rooms altogether. You can stay at another hotel if you prefer, but this is a good hotel and there are advantages to having a large group staying in one place.


You can still make a late registration at $125 for the conference as a whole.

For those in the Little Rock area who have unavoidable work obligations and can only come to part of the conference, we will pro-rate it to a lower level if you can only make part of the conference.

You register by paying the registration fees. We do not use registration forms to eliminate unnecessary paperwork. We can send an invoice if needed.

Register by PayPal on the website: You can register on the website at by going to the PayPal line at the top of the site that says “Donate.”

If you prefer to pay by mail, please make out the check to “Delta Caucus” and mail to:

Delta Caucus

5030 Purslane Place

Waldorf, MD 20601

If these two methods are impossible for you to use for whatever reason, we can accept a small number of payments at the conference. We prefer not to receive checks at the front desk when we are trying to get the program started because this can lead to delays.


OPENING SESSION: Thursday evening, Oct. 19, 4:15 p.m. to 6:45 p.m., Arkansas State Capitol Rotunda

NOTE: Traffic in Little Rock in the late afternoon gets more congested all the time, so please leave the hotel or wherever you are based a little before 4 p.m. to get there in time. Otherwise you may be stuck in traffic while the program is going on.

People take taxis to the state Capitol, or a few can go in the hotel shuttle, and some people have their cars there.

Informal Dinner on your own after the opening session ends, 7 p.m. to 8:15 p.m., Thursday evening at Holiday Inn Presidential restaurant called Camp David. This is strictly an informal social occasion for further networking and sharing information.

CLINTON LIBRARY SESSION: Friday, Oct. 20, from 8:30 a.m. to 1:15 p.m., Great Hall of the Clinton Presidential Library

Thanks very much. Lee Powell, Executive Director, Delta Grassroots Caucus (202) 360-6347

Delta Caucus Conference

Women & Minority Issues, Job Creation/Infrastructure, Health Care October 19-20, 2017 Little Rock, Arkansas


  1. Society of St. Andrew, Johnny Pettis, gleaning and anti-hunger program for Arkansas and Mississippi
  2. University of Kentucky Intstitute for Rural Journalism and Community Issues
  3. Shawnee Community College, southern Illinois
  4. Janis Kearney, Founding Publisher of Writing Our World Press, Little Rock, Arkansas
  5. Arkansas Literacy Councils

Note: Professor Gary Latanich, Emeritus Professor of Economics, Arkansas State University, Jonesboro, is senior adviser to the Delta Caucus for economics and will be taking part in question and answer sessions during the conference on infrastructure investments and other issues.

OPENING SESSION, Thursday evening, Oct. 19, 2017, 4:15 p.m. to 6:30 p.m., Rotunda of the Arkansas State Capitol

4:40 p.m. to 5:40 p.m.

4:40 p.m.-Lee Powell, Executive Director, Delta Grassroots Caucus (202) 360-6347

“Best Practices/Role Models for the Delta’s Community and Economic Development”

4:50 p.m.-Janelle Jenkins, KIPP Delta Public Schools Chief Operating Officer, Blytheville, Forrest City, Helena-West Helena, Arkansas

5:00 p.m.-Erica McFadden, Arkansas Food Bank, an affiliate of the national Feeding America organization; SNAP Outreach Coordinator

5:10 p.m.-Sally Heinz, CEO, Metropolitan Inter Faith Association (MIFA) of Memphis, Tennessee

5:10 p.m.-Jennifer Johnson, Southern Bancorp Community Partners, Director of Public Policy, based in Madison, Mississippi, programs active across Mississippi and Arkansas

5:20 p.m.-Rep. Warwick Sabin, Senior Director, USA Domestic Programs, Winrock International

“Infrastructure Investments and Job Creation”

5:40 p.m.-Mayor Chuck Espy, Clarksdale, Mississippi

5:50-p.m. State Senator Eddie Cheatham, Crossett, Arkansas representing a large section of the southeast Arkansas Delta, speaking on the need to support progress on the I-69 Corridor

5:55 p.m.-Scott Meyer, City Manager, Cape Girardeau, Missouri

6 p.m.–Alternate Federal Co-Chairman Peter Kinder of the Delta Regional Authority, from Cape Girardeau, Missouri (Introduced by Scott Meyer, City Manager of Cape Girardeau, Missouri)

6:20 p.m.-Mayor Shirley Washington, Pine Bluff, Arkansas

6:20 to 6:45 p.m.-Discussion and conclusion of “Best Practices/Role Models for Community and Economic Development speakers”

(Note: Informal social dinner on your own, 7 p.m. to 8:15 p.m.–Thursday night at Camp David restaurant at the Holiday Inn Presidential after the opening session ends around 6:45 p.m. or so, many Delta Caucus partners go out to dinner on their own for additional socializing, networking, and sharing information, either at the Holiday Inn Presidential’s restaurant, Camp David, or other restaurants in the Little Rock River Market. This is a traditional social part of the conference. There will definitely be a number of Delta Caucus folks at the Holiday Inn restaurant after the opening session.)


8:50 a.m. to 9 a.m.-Billy McFarland, Special Assistant to the President of Judson College, Marion, Alabama in the Alabama Black Belt, speaking about Judson College’s new project to establish a rural hospital in the Marion, Alabama Black Belt area

9 a.m. to 9:10 a.m.-Bo Ryall, CEO, Arkansas Hospitals Association, speaking about the Arkansas Works Medicaid expansion program

9:15 a.m. to 9:30 a.m.-Congressman French Hill, Second District of Arkansas

9:30 a.m. to 9:50 a.m., Governor Asa Hutchinson of Arkansas

10 a.m. to 10:15 a.m.-Congressman Rick Crawford, First District of Arkansas

10;15 a.m. to 10:30 a.m.-US Senator John Boozman (Introduced by Randy Henderson, Nucor Yamato Steel and Nucor Steel of Arkansas)

10:30 a.m.–Chelsea Clinton, Vice Chair, Clinton Foundation, speaking by live-call in on the Clinton Foundation’s Domestic USA Programs (Introduced by Annette Dove, Executive Director, TOPPS nonprofit in Pine Bluff, Arkansas)

10:40 a.m. to noon-Women and minority issues regarding community and economic development

10:40 to 10:50 a.m.–Humberto Marquez, Organizing Director, Arkansas United Community Coalition-an organization addressing Hispanic issues, and Steve Copley, Inter-Faith Arkansas

10:50 a.m. to 11:05 a.m.-Annette Dove, Executive Director of the TOPPS nonprofit organization in Pine Bluff, Arkansas; and Crystal Barnes, President of the Pine Bluff High School student body, and participant in the TOPPS mentoring program

11:05 a.m. to 11:15 a.m.-President Peggy Bradford, Shawnee Community College in the southern Illinois Delta

11:15 a.m.. to 11:25 a.m.-Liz Young, Executive Director of the Arkansas Women’s Business Center (affiliated with Winrock International)

11:25 a.m. to 11:35 a.m.–Rebecca Reynolds, Executive Director, Arkansas Coalition of Action Agency Association

11:35 a.m. to 11:50 a.m.-Betty Dobson/Maggie Steed, Hotel Metropolitan and Upper Town Heritage Foundation, Paducah, west Kentucky Delta; the Hotel Metropolitan was the only hotel in the area during the Jim Crow era where African Americans could stay and was frequented by Louis Armstrong, Cab Calloway, Ike and Tina Turner and many other famous Americans

LUNCHEON, 11:50 a.m. to 1:15 p.m.

“Women, Minorities and Rural American Issues”

Statement from the Delta Caucus Senior Leadership:

11:50 a.m. to 12:10–Lee Powell, Executive Director, Delta Grassroots Caucus, and Millie Atkins, Co-Chair of the national Economic Equality Caucus, community leader from Monroe, Louisiana

12:10 to 12:20–Al Cross, University of Kentucky Institute for Rural Journalism and Community Issues, speaking on Rural America and the 2016 election

12:20 ti 12:30–Angie Maxwell, Director, Diane Blair Center for Southern Politics and Society, Fulbright College at the University of Arkansas, women and minority issues in the 2016 election

12:30 to 12:50–Dean Todd Shields, J. William Fulbright College of Arts and Sciences, University of Arkansas, Fayetteville, speaking on women and minority issues in the 2016 election

12:50 to 1 p.m.–Question and answer

Sponsors for the Delta Caucus, Oct. 19-20, 2017

Little Rock, Arkansas


Nucor Yamato Steel and Nucor Steel of Arkansas


Mississippi County AR Economic Opportunity Commission, Blytheville, Arkansas

J. William Fulbright College of Arts and Sciences, University of Arkansas, Fayetteville


Illinois Municipal League

Winrock International

Millie Atkins, Co-Chair, Economic Equality Caucus, and Community Leader based in Monroe, Louisiana

Sikeston, Missouri Regional Chamber of Commerce

The Arkansas Municipal League

Cooperative Baptist Fellowship of Arkansas

American Agriculture Movement of Arkansas

Delta Grassroots Partners

Last but not least we would like to thank the hundreds of grassroots partners across the region and the Washington, DC area for their many contributions of registration fees, annual membership dues and other voluntary contributions in the amounts of $125, $100, $75, $50 and $25. As a grassroots sector private coalition, we need to have a diversified financial base with large numbers of small contributions, and we could not do our work without these very numerous contributions.