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RUSSELL SIMMONS, DR. BENJAMIN CHAVIS, CONGRESSMAN CHAKA FATTAH, PHILADELPHIA MAYOR JOHN F. STREET, PENNSYLVANIA GOVERNOR EDWARD RENDELL, THE HIP-HOP SUMMIT ACTION NETWORK AND THE NATIONAL VOTER COALITION CONVENE NATIONAL TOWN HALL MEETING IN PHILADELPHIA JULY 12
ARTISTS JUELZ SANTANA, MUSIQ, REMY MA, QUEEN PEN AND JAGUAR WRIGHT, AMONG OTHERS JOIN IN VOTER REGISTRATION AND ECONOMIC EMPOWERMENT CAMPAIGN
NEW YORK, N.Y. – JULY 5th, 2006 – The Hip-Hop Summit Action Network (HSAN) Chairman Russell Simmons, President/CEO Dr Benjamin Chavis and Congressman Chaka Fattah, Philadelphia Mayor John F. Street, Pennsylvania Governor Edward Rendell and the National Voter Coalition have joined together to bring the Hip-Hop Summit National Town Hall Meeting on Community Empowerment to Philadelphia on Wednesday, July 12, 2006. The event will take place at the University of Pennsylvania’s Irvine Auditorium, 3401 Spruce Street. Doors open at 5pm. Artists participating include Top Ten artist and Diplomats member Juelz Santana, conscious rapper Musiq, Top Ten artist Remy Ma, Queen Pen and Philly’s own neo-soul artist Jaguar Wright. Presenting sponsors include Anheuser-Busch, Inc. and Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. in conjunction with Wal-Mart Financial Services. The media partner is Clear Channel’s Philadelphia Power 99 FM Radio.
The Hip-Hop Summit National Town Hall Meeting on Community Empowerment will kick off with a press conference and VIP reception at 5pm on July 12 at Irvine Auditorium. The Town Hall Meeting, which will be broadcast live on radio and television, will begin at 7pm. The focus will be on quality of life issues, which impact the empowerment of communities. HSAN and the National Voter Coalition have embarked on a massive, non-partisan voter registration campaign designed to heighten the awareness among young adults 18-35 of their civic responsibilities and right to vote, as well as the importance of economic empowerment. One of the goals of the campaign is to register 10,000 new voters in the Philadelphia area during the summer of 2006.
“I am pleased to join Russell Simmons in working to use hip hop as a tool to empower our youth,” said Congressman Chaka Fattah, (D-Pa). “Regardless of party affiliation or ethnicity, true empowerment comes when we can combine the desire for obtaining a high quality education with an understanding that the ability to exercise the right to vote is not only a privilege but a necessity.”
Russell Simmons emphasized, “We’re pleased to return to the city of Philadelphia for our National Town Hall Meeting on Community Empowerment and to encourage young people to
register to vote. We have a track record of success in this city and throughout America where the hip-hop generation is standing up and taking the issue of civic responsibility seriously. We’re also here to stress the importance of economic empowerment. Hip-hop is about improving the overall quality of life in our communities. The National Town Hall Meeting will, therefore, focus on a wide range of issues that impact both the economic and political spheres.”
“Hip-Hop has become a powerful force in our communities and a significant part of this nation’s culture,” said Philadelphia Mayor John F. Street. “Working with HSAN and the National Voter Coalition, we have a unique opportunity, through the power of Hip Hop, to change forever the political landscape of this country. The artists participating in this project will have an impact on our youth that will extend well beyond this event, and encourage them to understand the importance of their right to vote.”
“I am proud to support the Hip Hop Summit,” Gov. Rendell added. “Empowerment and voter registration efforts such as this make our communities stronger.”
“The Hip-Hop Summit Action Network consistently taps into the consciousness of our youth, providing them with not only knowledge, but tools that will help them prepare for a future in which the decisions they make today will determine the opportunities they have tomorrow,” declared Johnny Furr, Vice President, Urban Marketing and Community Affairs, Anheuser-Busch, Inc. “Anheuser-Busch is proud to continue our partnership with, and support of, the Summits and the Hip-Hop Summit Action Network, which make a real and lasting difference in the lives of young people in communities across the nation.”
“Financial literacy and responsibility are tools essential to community empowerment,” said Esther Silver Parker, vice president diversity relations, Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. “Wal-Mart and Wal-Mart Financial Services are proud to participate in the Hip-Hop Summit Town Hall Meeting and to help young people acquire skills that will pay dividends in our communities for years to come.”
Dr Chavis declared, “The hip-hop generation has a hunger and thirst for community empowerment. On July 12, we will have the attention of millions of young people across the nation who are looking for guidance. Hip-hop culture spits truth to power and that is what our voter registration campaign and the National Town Hall Meeting are all about.”
For those who want to register to vote and get their ticket to the National Town Hall Meeting, please call 610-626-1564, or go to www.hsan.org http://www.hsan.org.
Based in St. Louis, Anheuser-Busch Cos., Inc. is the leading American brewer holding 50 percent of the U.S. beer market. The company is American-owned and brews the world’s largest-selling beers, Budweiser and Bud Light. Anheuser-Busch is ranked first in the U.S. beverage industry in Fortune magazine’s 2005 “America’s Most Admired Companies” and in the top 30 on Fortune’s 2005 “Global Most Admired Companies” list. The company is one of the largest theme park operators in the United States, is a major manufacturer of aluminum cans and is the world’s
largest recycler of aluminum beverage containers. For more information, visit www.anheuser-busch.com http://www.anheuser-busch.com/ .
About Wal-Mart Stores, Inc.
Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. operates Wal-Mart discount stores, supercenters, Neighborhood Markets and SAM’S CLUB locations in the United States. The company has operations in Argentina, Brazil, Canada, China, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Germany, Guatemala, Honduras, Japan, Mexico, Nicaragua, Puerto Rico, South Korea and the United Kingdom. The company’s securities are listed on the New York Stock Exchange and NYSE Arca, formerly the Pacific Stock Exchange, under the symbol WMT. Online merchandise sales are available at www.walmart.com
About Hip-Hop Summit Action Network:
Founded in 2001, the Hip-Hop Summit Action Network (HSAN) is dedicated to harnessing the cultural relevance of hip-hop music to serve as a catalyst for education advocacy and other societal concerns fundamental to the well being of at-risk youth throughout the United States. HSAN is the largest non-profit, national coalition of hip-hop artists, entertainment industry leaders, education advocates, civil rights proponents, and youth leaders united in the belief that Hip-Hop is an enormously influential agent for positive social change which must be responsibly and proactively utilized to fight the war on poverty and injustice. For more information, go to www.hsan.org http://www.hsan.org.