National League of Cities CEO Clarence Anthony and YMCA of the USA president and CEO Kevin Washington have joined other Black executives in launching a nation-wide vaccine equity and education initiative aimed at the Black community. On Friday, April 9 at 11:00am ET, Anthony and Washington join Washington Post Live to discuss the history of medical distrust among Black Americans and how this initiative is dispelling misconceptions about the COVID-19 vaccine.

Highlights

Kevin Washington on YMCAs across the country spreading information on vaccines, and increasing access for communities. “We really believe as a trusted voice, as a vital community asset in many communities, the opportunity to engage, to educate, and provide access to folks is one of the things that we do[…] as an organization.” (Washington Post Live)
National League of Cities CEO Clarence Anthony encourages city leaders to use data to direct resources to communities with low vaccination rates. Anthony says, “We have to be able to know the data, and know the gaps, know where the folks that have not got the vaccine, know where they are, what race they are. So we’re encouraging our city leaders to work to get that data so that they can address it.“ (Washington Post Live)
National League of Cities CEO Clarence Anthony says many cities need to acknowledge their initial response to the pandemic was not quick enough. “We’ve got a lot of work to do, and we gotta be real. We gotta have real solutions and think about how do we implement initiatives and vaccine distributions that’s tailored, and can be effective. And our city leaders are really committed to doing that in an equitable way.” (Washington Post Live)
President and CEO, YMCA of the USA Kevin Washington says, “If there’s a not guilty verdict, we have some work to ensure our communities stay safe, and we’re part of that process to make that happen.” National League of Cities CEO Clarence Anthony says, “If this gets a ‘not guilty’ verdict, I go into CEO of the National League of Cities, I have to help my members to manage this in their communities. Give them the tools to be able to lead a diverse community , and have conversations and transparency, or we’re going to have lots of disruption and protest in our cities.” (Washington Post Live)

Clarence Anthony

Clarence E. Anthony is CEO and Executive Director of the National League of Cities (NLC), the largest and oldest organization representing America's cities and their leaders. Under his leadership, NLC has advanced policies that expand local control and provide direct funding for local programs related to public safety, infrastructure, transportation, and sustainability.

Mr. Anthony began his career in public service as the Mayor of South Bay, FL, for 24 years. He is known as a creative and thoughtful leader in his community. He is considered an expert in citizen engagement and techniques that build a "sense of community" within cities. Mr. Anthony has been on the forefront of politics in the United States and internationally for the past 20 years, culminating with productive presidencies of the Florida League of Cities and the National League of Cities (NLC), respectively.

Mr. Anthony also served as First Vice President of International Union of Local Authorities and as Founding Treasurer of United Cities and Local Governments (UCLG), the international voice for local governments, for four years. Most recently, he served as the Interim Manager for UCLG.

Prior to his appointment as CEO and Executive Director of NLC, Mr. Anthony served as President of Anthony Government Solutions, a consulting firm focused on providing solutions to government and private sector organizations on issues affecting the community, strategic visioning, policy development, business development and management restructuring.

He holds a Masters Degree in Public Administration with specialization in City Growth Management policy from Florida Atlantic University.

Kevin Washington

Kevin Washington is President and CEO of YMCA of the USA (Y-USA), the national resource office for the Y—a leading nonprofit committed to strengthening community through youth development, healthy living and social responsibility. Collectively, the nation’s YMCAs engage 22 million members (9 million of whom are under the age of 18) annually.

The Y has been a fixture in Kevin’s life since he was 10 years old, when he first took part in an afterschool program at the Christian Street YMCA in his south Philadelphia neighborhood. His involvement with the Y changed the trajectory of his life, thanks in large measure to a mentor named Bill Morton and basketball. Bill helped Kevin avoid the negative influences and tragic circumstances that ensnared other kids from his neighborhood, and basketball afforded him the opportunity to earn a scholarship to Temple University.

After Kevin graduated from Temple, Bill—who by this time had been promoted to Executive Director of the Christian Street YMCA—hired Kevin as Youth Director, the same position Bill held when he met 10-year-old Kevin.

That is how Kevin Washington’s Y story began. And it continues today, after 43 years as a YMCA professional, with him serving as the 14th person and first African American to lead the Y in the U.S.

He came to Y-USA in February 2015 from the YMCA of Greater Boston, where as President and CEO from 2010 to 2014 he expanded membership and access by reducing rates, increased diversity and engagement among the Board of Directors to better reflect the community and implemented a childhood-education quality initiative that benefits thousands of children and families throughout eastern Massachusetts.

Prior to Boston, Kevin served as President and CEO of the YMCA of Greater Hartford from 2000 to 2010. Under his leadership, the Hartford YMCA invested more than $60 million to develop or expand eight facilities and camps. He was Chief Operating Officer for the YMCA of Metropolitan Chicago from 1995 to 2000, and previously held other executive roles with the Chicago YMCA and the Greater Philadelphia YMCA.

The NonProfit Times named Kevin to the Power & Influence Top 50, its annual celebration of the nonprofit sector’s top executives and strategists, in 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019 and 2020. He is a Health and Health Care Industry Governor at the World Economic Forum. He also serves on the boards of Springfield College and the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation and the executive committee of Leadership 18.

Kevin earned a bachelor’s degree in history from Temple University.