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Reflections from Paul Norrington

On June 16th, we submitted our qualifications in partnership with UIC to get the Obama Foundation to consider building the Obama Presidential Library in North Lawndale, on Chicago’s West Side.  On Thursday, December 11, 2014, the UIC-North Lawndale team submitted our proposal as one of the four finalists . Thank you North Lawndale for stepping up.  
As we submitted our bid, I reflected on our first Facebook post, made on our newly created group, Westside Presidential Library. (We have since moved to the North Lawndale Presidential Library page). As we focus our efforts on community outreach and engagement, I would like to share it again.  I am truly amazed at how a “pipe dream” is on the precipice of becoming a reality. God is smiling on us, indeed.
President Obama came home to Chicago today to address the growing street violence that is plaguing big cities across the nation. I just watched 15 minutes of national news coverage about the subject on CNN. That’s a lot of airtime for one story. And all of that time focused on inner-city problems! That’s what we need, attention paid to finding solutions to these problems. President Obama brought that attention with just one visit! Imagine how much prolonged attention would be paid to these problems if the president built his presidential library on the west side of Chicago, in the heart of inner city life.

In 1966, Dr King lived on the west side of Chicago to address poverty in the inner city. His mission was never completed. President Obama has the opportunity to make a significant difference in the lives of the nation’s poor, just by building his library where Dr King focused his efforts.

If you agree with this, there is no organization to join or support yet. All I’m asking is that you ask yourself one question, “what can I do to make this happen?”
Please repost.

I ask you again today to look inside yourselves and ask the same question,  “what can I do to make this happen?”  Perhaps you would be interested in sponsoring a special event to mark Kwanzaa, the New Year, Martin Luther King Day, or Black History Month, while promoting the notion of the Presidential Library coming to North Lawndale. Perhaps you would like to engage friends and family in a social media campaign, or a letter writing campaign. The possibilities are endless.
Paul Norrington, Chairman of the North Lawndale Presidential Library Committee, prepares for an interview with WLS-TV in Chicago. Photo credit: Marcus De La Fleur
The UIC Bid in the News

As you can imagine, the bidding war for the Obama Presidential Library got significant coverage. These tweets link to some of the hottest stories of December 11, 2014, the day the proposal was due. Please feel free to share and comment.

Photo credit: University of Illinois at Chicago Media

Children from Sumner Math and Science Academy urge the Obama Foundation to bring the Presidential Library to North Lawndale during a rally to celebrate the submission of the bid on December 11, 2014. Photo credit: University of Illinois Media.
Thank You for Your Support!!

We want to thank you for supporting our social media. Our website has 1,109 views one week after going live, in spite of the fact that the site was down for a day for maintenance. We have 50 Twitter followers, 2 Wordpress followers, 647 Facebook "likes" and 6 followers to our blog.

Check Out Our Social Media!

Follow Us on Twitter!

Follow us @NLOPL. You will be able to get updates, interact with our other followers and view videos of our local heroes sharing North Lawndale stories. We encourage you to ask your Twitter followers to follow this page and engage us in conversation.  If you are going to the town hall meeting, be sure and live tweet from the event.

Find Us on Facebook!

Make sure to "Like" the North Lawndale Presidential Library page and encourage your Facebook friends to do the same. You will get updates and be able to have conversations with other fans and North Lawndale stakeholders.  Please, encourage your Facebook friends to "like" and share this page as well. If you're going to the town hall meeting be sure to take pics and post them on Facebook during the event.

Visit Our Website!

Our website went live on December 7, 2014.  When you visit, you will get an overview of the North Lawndale bid, learn about other Presidential Libraries, be able to give feedback about the proposed Presidential Library in North Lawndale, see our Twitter feed and get other updates. Please, visit the website the Chicago Way--early and often! You are encouraged to follow our blogs to get instant updates every time a new blog article is posted.

Thanks for helping us generate a buzz!
Copyright © 2014 North Lawndale Presidential Library Committee, All rights reserved.

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