I was blessed to visit my hometown from May 17 through May 19, blessed to join a stellar group of twenty-five women who graced the front page of the San Francisco Sun Reporter during Women’s History Month. These were sisters who are making a difference, from elected officials like Mayor London Breed and District Attorney Brooke Jenkins, to legendary television personalities like Pam Moore and Carolyn Tylor. The room at the Filmore Center was filled with power and enthusiasm, anchored by Sun Reporter publisher Amelia Ashley-Ward, whose joy and appreciation for the women she featured in her paper was palpable.

My role?  Simply to offer a keynote recognizing women and lifting us up.  That might have been one of the easiest assignments I’ve had in a while.  It was also a blessing that we were able to give away dozens of my book, Surviving and Thriving: 365 Facts in Black Economic History.  Between the event at the Filmore Center on Friday and the book signing at the Sun Reporter offices on Saturday, my cup run over so much that a saucer couldn’t handle my feelings.

I am so proud of Mayor London Breed, my sorority sister, and an impactful leader. It was informative and important to hear her outline her accomplishments as Mayor – too many women are reluctant to toot their own horns. The Filmore Center is testament to the mayor’s leadership, and to her recognition of the African American legacy in San Francisco. The lease on the center is held by the Westside Community Health Care, ably led by Dr. Mary Ann Jones, a sister whose work on trauma is global. Another of the key players in San Francisco is Dr. Sheryl Davis, who leads the City’s Human Rights Commission, which includes the City’s reparations work. Imagine all this woman power in one room!

Of course, there were a few good men, including Mayor Willie Brown, who is enthusiastically supportive of Mayor Breed, and Timothy Simon, a civic powerhouse recently led the California Black Chamber of Commerce. Ace Washington, who I worked with “back in the day” was there helping, as he always has, moving chairs, helping people to their tables and being the all-around good guy that he has always been.

While I was working, I was also walking down memory lane, and marinating in the memories. Whenever my plane lands in San Francisco, as I see the water I get choked up with nostalgia. I left San Francisco thirty years ago, but I still identify myself as a San Francisco woman. I still bristle when our city is referred to as “Frisco”. We are worth all the syllables.

And we are blessed to have London Breed as our mayor. She describes herself as a child of the projects, raised by her grandmother. Her lived experience brings a depth of policy knowledge that her melanin-deficient opponents in this mayor’s race do not have. But she should not be reelected simply because she is a Black woman who grew up in the projects. She should be reelected because she is policy-superior, because she is determined to serve ALL the city, but especially the least and left out. A millionaire whose mama is prepared to fund his campaign isn’t focused that way. Neither is a so-called progressive who embraces the NIMBY (not in my back yard) philosophy. NIMBY won’t help with rising rents or the homeless situation. NIMBY is backward thinking.

San Francisco used to be one of the most progressive cities in the nation. We are a city who elected the iconic Senator Dianne Feinstein in the wake of tragedy, the city that produced our current Vice-President, the city that elected Willie Brown as Mayor, the city that elected Ed Lee, who preceded London Breed as Mayor. Some of the anti-Blackness in this current campaign belies our city’s progressive roots. The power in the room at the Filmore Center can repel these repulsive sentiments.

I came to San Francisco on the heels of the victory of Angela Alsobrooks, who wrestled the Democratic nomination from David Trone, the billionaire bully who thought he could buy himself a Senate seat. Some say Angela’s double-digit win over an opponent who spent more than $60 million of his money on the race, is an example of “Black Girl Magic”. Nope! Angela worked hard for her victory, there was no magic dust! Like Angela Alsobrooks, Mayor London Breed has worked hard. She deserves reelection. And my time at home reminded me how much I love my city. What a wonderful walk down memory lane!

BC Editorial Board Member Dr. Julianne

Malveaux, PhD (JulianneMalveaux.com)

is former dean of the College of Ethnic

Studies at Cal State, the Honorary Co-

Chair of the Social Action Commission of

Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Incorporated

and serves on the boards of the

Economic Policy Institute as well as The

Recreation Wish List Committee of

Washington, DC.

Her latest book is Are We Better Off?

Race, Obama and Public Policy. A native

San Franciscan, she is the President and

owner of Economic Education a 501 c-3

non-profit headquartered in Washington,

D.C. During her time as the 15th

President of Bennett College for Women,

Dr. Malveaux was the architect of

exciting and innovative transformation at

America’s oldest historically black college

for women. Contact Dr. Malveaux and