Va. NAACP holds state conference this weekend

10/27/2017, 6:42 a.m.
Politics will be the major feature of the annual three-day convention of the Virginia State Conference of the NAACP this ...

Politics will be the major feature of the annual three-day convention of the Virginia State Conference of the NAACP this weekend in Henrico County.

Gov. Terry McAuliffe U.S. Sen. and Tim Kaine are scheduled to speak at the luncheon on Saturday, Oct. 28, according to Linda Thomas, the state president.

That will be followed with a forum for the candidates for statewide office, she said. The forum, from 2 to 4 p.m., also will be open to the public, Ms. Thomas said.

The convention events are being held at the Hilton Richmond Hotel, 12042 W. Broad St., in Short Pump.

The Democratic candidates have all confirmed they will speak and take questions from the estimated 200 convention delegates, Ms. Thomas said. They are Dr. Ralph Northam, who is running for governor; Justin Fairfax, who is running for lieutenant governor; and Attorney General Mark Herring who is running for re-election.

Republican gubernatorial candidate Ed Gillespie initially had a conflict, but is now considering attending the forum, Ms. Thomas said. However, the two other GOP candidates declined or did not respond. They are state Sen. Jill Vogel, who is running against Mr. Fairfax for lieutenant governor; and John Adams, who is challenging Mr. Herring for attorney general.

Richmond Delegate Delores L. McQuinn will speak at Saturday evening’s Freedom Fund Banquet, the conference’s major fundraiser.

The convention opens Friday, Oct. 27, and will run through Sunday, Oct. 29. Delegates also will elect new state officers, said Ms. Thomas, who is not running for re-election. She also has been serving as interim executive director of the state NAACP.

Two people are vying to become the state organization’s next president — Kevin L. Chandler of South Boston and Shirley Ginwright of Fairfax.

In the races for other offices, Robert Barnette Jr. of Mechanicsville and Alford Carter III of Front Royal are competing for vice president, while Joyce M. Knight is challenging incumbent L.J. McCoy Jr. of Chesterfield County for the post of secretary. James Boyd of Portsmouth and Jacqueline Crawford-Johnson of Fishersville are vying for treasurer.

The convention will wrap up Sunday with votes on resolutions to establish the policy agenda for the state group.