Michael Blake

Assemblymember

Bronx, NY

Michael A. Blake is an Assembly Member in the New York State Assembly representing the 79th District in The Bronx, New York. In early 2007, Michael joined then Sen. Barack Obama’s campaign, serving in director position throughout several key states including Michigan Deputy State Director for the general election. After the election, Blake joined the White House staff as the Associate Director of Public Engagement and Deputy Associate Director of the Office of Intergovernmental Affairs, where he created the White House Urban Entrepreneurship Summit series: a series which sought to foster public, private and not-for-profit partnerships and provide strategic advice in seven cities across the nation.

Blake left the White House to serve as the national deputy director of Operation Vote for President Obama’s 2012 re-election and helped expand the diverse electorate that later re-elected the president, leading to historic turnout among constituencies nationwide.

Born and raised in The Bronx, New York to Jamaican immigrants, Blake was first elected to the Assembly in 2014, Blake has continued his work in the community, fighting for issues such as Minority and Women Owned Business Enterprises (MWBEs), education, community learning, building sustainable communities, equality for all and empowering young men of color. Blake serves as the only state legislator on the My Brother's Keeper Alliance national advisory board and is a board member of iVOTE, which focuses on protecting voting rights across the country. In February, 2017 Blake was elected Vice Chair of the Democratic National Committee where he oversees Local and Municipal Elected Official Outreach, as well as millennial and African American engagement.

 

Pro-Growth Progressive Ideas Shared

Problem

According to the census, The Bronx is the most diverse county in America. However, we have one of the poorest congressional districts, and no Community Foundation to help us direct resources to local organizations and programs to support community members, students, and entrepreneurs.

Solution

We are creating The Bronx Foundation, which allows us to direct resources to local organizations and focus on helping entrepreneurs and Bronxites create jobs, primarily through technology, music, food, health and the arts. Our 3 Es focus of Economic Development, Education & Equity guide us to partner with other local organizations to help students connect with skills and jobs for now and the future, encourage music and the arts, create an Entrepreneurial Accelerator, and continue to amplify existing entrepreneurship programs and workshops. Bringing together the core efforts of these groups, along with a systemic team approach, will allow us to attract additional philanthropic, corporate and entrepreneurial support while directing resources, initiatives and practical solutions to local organizations. Moreover, our collaboration with our four school districts, our three hospitals and five surrounding colleges and universities gives us direct partner organizations to take local efforts to scale.