New Florida Majority Executive Director Gihan Perera announced Wednesday that educator, community activist and former Florida State Senator Dwight Bullard would be joining the staff as the organization’s new Political Director effective today, March 1st.
“I can’t think of a better person to help us push Florida forward and build the kinds of grassroots coalitions between community residents and elected officials than Dwight,” said Perera. “He’s been on the frontlines of educating our youth, improving workers’ lives, and helping this state realize the power of inclusion, and the beauty of its diverse destiny. He knows, deep in his heart, that to make this state great, we need to organize and empower a whole range of people, young and old so that they can demand the kind of educational and economic opportunity that we all deserve. He is foremost dedicated to improving our lives and our communities.”
“New Florida Majority has been at the forefront of local grassroots efforts here in Miami-Dade and with it’s allies across the state. I’m excited about contributing to building grassroots power. I love the idea of uniting people across race and gender and generation, and I’m blessed to be able to use my experience and wisdom to help build the type of participatory democracy that NewFM stands for,” said Sen. Bullard, who will be moderating a Friday morning panel at the Greater Miami-Dade Chamber of Commerce’s Annual Symposium and Business Leaders Luncheon this Friday at the Hyatt Regency hotel (400 SE Second Avenue) from 8:30 a.m. – 11 a.m.
Sen. Bullard is expected to lead the organization’s cross sector work in creating an inclusive, equitable, and just Florida by helping to develop and lead a community-based agenda for overall social, economic and political success statewide. He’ll be working specifically to help coalesce issues important to Black communities and supporting the advancement of Black political participation. He’ll also help oversee policy research and analysis, track state and local legislation and build relationships between elected officials, community leaders and other policymakers working on issues of concern to Black and Latino communities, particularly around criminal justice, education, and economic prosperity.
For Sen. Bullard, it’s an opportunity to continue to build on the work that started in the classroom and continued through nearly a decade in Tallahassee.
“In this time of political uncertainty, the Black community along with varying communities of color have to build deeper connections in order to build power and I want to help move that process along,” said Sen. Bullard.
Bullard brings more than two decades of legislative and community experience in fighting for Florida’s historically underrepresented communities. A longtime teacher at Coral Reef Senior High School, Sen. Bullard served as a Member of both the Florida House of Representatives and State Senate, fighting for policies that sought to help students and families reach their full potential. His legislative achievements include being a lead sponsor of an anti-bullying bill that strengthened protections for students being harassed online and leading efforts to provide in-state tuition rates for undocumented students. Sen. Bullard is also a member of several community, civic and social organizations and boards, including the NAACP, 100 Black Men of South Florida, City Year Miami, Camillus House and the Zoological Society of South Florida.
Founded in 2009, the New Florida Majority is an independent organization that believes that democracy works best when people are actively engaged, have a voice, a vote, and a sense of power. NewFM works to increase the voting and political power of historically marginalized and excluded communities statewide by training grassroots citizens to be leaders and inspiring all Floridians to take actions toward their dreams. Recent achievements have included helping to win $15 an hour living wage legislation in the City of Miami, helping to pass a Human Rights Ordinance in the city of Jacksonville, and joining in on a successful lawsuit that extended the voter registration period after Hurricane Matthew, which enabled 108,000 additional people to register for the November 2016 elections.