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Vice Mayor Richardson at White House My Brother’s Keeper Summit: ‘It Has to Be Personal’

By: Stephanie Rivera, Long Beach Post

Long Beach Vice Mayor Rex Richardson participated in the White House’s final My Brother’s Keeper National Summit on Wednesday, highlighting the city’s efforts in helping its boys and young men of color as part of its answer to President Barack Obama’s call to action, which challenged communities across the U.S. to focus resources to that specific portion of the population.

Richardson, who led the charge in implementing MBK in Long Beach in 2015, discussed the city’s Promising Adults Tomorrow’s Hope (PATH) young adult diversion program, and the creation of the Long Beach Office of Equity

“It forced us to, rather than have this as some plan to put in our pocket or sit on a shelf, it forced us to add staff and build capacity and actually implement that plan,” Richardson said during a panel discussion with other local leaders who have implemented MBK in their districts.

Vice Mayor Rex Richardson's Weekly Letter

Dear Friends, 


We did it! The Long Beach community surpassed our #ReadwithRex Challenge goal! 

Last week marked the 100th day since the opening of the Michelle Obama Neighborhood Library. Since the opening, library participation has increased tremendously, and readership has increased 175%! 

In early March, we celebrated "Read Across America Day" with the students at Colin L. Powell Academy, and kicked-off the "Read with Rex" challenge. The “Read with Rex” challenge asked our community to pledge to check out and read 10,000 additional items within the first 100 days of the opening of the new Michelle Obama Neighborhood Library.

The goal was to go above the average of 15,000 items checked out in that regular time period. The residents of Long Beach rose to this challenge and checked out a grand total of 41,391 items in the first 100 days!  Our youth spearheaded the surge in book reading with 4,336 of the books checked out being children’s picture books — the largest collection checked out during the challenge.

I am amazed by these results, and incredibly proud of our residents for rising to the challenge.  I encourage you to keep up the pace of increased library participation and readership, and enjoy the Michelle Obama Neighborhood Library.

Thank you to all of the community members who participated, especially our 9th District schools. And special thank you to the Library Services Department staff and the Long Beach Public Library Foundation for your support! 


Vice Mayor Rex Richardson