We read their great work at Daily Kos on a daily basis. But we never hear them speak. Today we hear them, Denise Oliver-Velez, Timothy Lange aka Meteor Blades, David Reid, and Frank Vyan Walton, and yours truly, the interviewer, Egberto Willies. There were many more in attendance but I could not reach them all for interviews.
Daily Kos Contributing Editor Denise Oliver-Velez
Who is Denise Oliver-Velez?
She is currently an adjunct Professor of Anthropology and Women’s Studies at SUNY New Paltz. Born in Brooklyn, New York, in 1947, she currently lives in New York’s Hudson Valley on a small farm with her husband, dogs, cats and roosters; growing garlic and roses, and spending time with her hobby of African-American genealogical research, when she isn’t blogging.
She has worn many hats in her life, before becoming a blogger at age 60. She has been a political activist and community organizer, was in the Civil Rights movement, women’s movement, AIDS activism movement and was a member of both the Young Lords Party and the Black Panther Party in the late 1960s and early 1970s. She worked in community media and public broadcasting for many years and was a co-founder and program director of Pacifica’s first minority-controlled radio station, WPFW-FM, in Washington DC. She was the coordinator of CPB’s Minority and Women’s Training Grant Program and was the executive director of the Black Filmmaker Foundation.
She has published ethnographic research as part of several HIV/AIDS intervention projects and is working on a book on the women of the Young Lords Party with co-author Iris Morales. Denise is an active participant in several Daily Kos communities as a co-editor of Black Kos, and is an editor of Latino Kos and HIV/AIDS Action.
PS: We had technical difficulties with Denise’s recording and we lost most of it.
Daily Kos Senior Political Writer Timothy Lange aka Meteor Blades
Who is Timothy Lange aka Meteor Blades? He has been politically active since 1964 when he participated in voter registration in Mississippi with the Student Non-violent Coordinating Committee in Freedom Summer. He was involved as an organizer in Students for a Democratic Society and, for 16 years, as a member of the American Indian Movement. He was incarcerated at the Industrial School for Boys in Golden, Colorado, for 23 months and spent 13 months at a federal prison camp for refusing the draft.
His most serious political campaign work was in third-tier paid positions for Pat Schroeder and Tim Wirth during their first election efforts in 1972 and 1974, respectively.
In 1973, together with 14 other women and men, he co-founded and served on the board of the Boulder Valley Clinic, one of the nation’s first nonprofit abortion providers, which remains in operation today. He has been a reporter, editor and publisher for both alternative and mainstream publications, finishing his three decades in journalism at the Los Angeles Times. Over the years, he has broken stories about U.S. involvement in Guatemalan genocide, “Star Wars” technology, federal “Crisis Relocation” plans, leaking uranium mills and other environmental disasters, including destructive development in coastal Bali. He now lives just south of the San Francisco Bay Area.
Daily Kos Contributing Editor Frank Vyan Walton
Who is Frank Vyan Walton?
He was born in the year that President John F. Kennedy was assassinated in Dallas, Texas, just one year after his “We chose to go to the moon” speech that inspired America to aim higher and reach further than any other nation, the year that the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. held his historic march on Washington for the rights of all and gave a speech that would be known very differently had not Mahalia Jackson shouted to the Reverend, ‘Tell Them about ‘The Dream’ Martin!” , the year that a certain Time Lord first made his appearance on the BBC and inspired many more to dream even further than could have been otherwise imagined.
He grew up in the long concrete abyss of South Central Los Angeles, among the warring factions of the Hoover Crips, the Bloods and the LAPD, watching militarized SWAT units emerge in response to the Black Panther Party for Self Defense (daring to exercise their Second Amendment rights publicly while decrying both gang and police violence).
His professional career began with working in the IT division of Northrop Grumman Corporation on their “Black World” project to develop the airborne version of what Tom Clancy’s Hunt For Red October called the “ultimate first strike weapon,” the B2 stealth bomber. After leaving Northrop to become a contracting IT consultant for the state of California in the mid-‘90s, he began to write and debate on the early ARPANET and Usenet, while learning to play guitar, bass, and lead sing in various L.A., and then Sacramento rock bands. Returning home to L.A. after the George Bush and Enron-wrought financial crash, he first found, joined, and began writing about public affairs on DailyKos in 2005, inspired by the blog of an active-duty Iraq war veteran. He’s been making a lot of noise ever since, both on Daily Kos and through projects such as online site building tool, SuperEShops.com, and on his debut solo CD, “Re-Evolutionize,” released in 2008.
Daily Kos Blogger and Black Kos Founder and Administrator David Reid
Who is David Reid?
David Reid is the founder of Black Kos. He took it upon himself to ensure that not only was the Daily Kos community diverse but that all voices were heard.
Daily Kos Contributing Editor Egberto Willies
Who is Egberto Willies?
He is a political activist, author, political blogger former member of the executive committee of Move To Amend (MTA), former vice president and current member of the board of directors of Coffee Party USA, a CNN iReporter with over one million page views, a Spirit Award honoree for CNN iReport, a former frequent contributor to HuffPost Live and host of the Multimedia show Politics Done Right on Pacifica Network’s KPFT 90.1 FM, BlogTalkRadio, Facebook Live, and Youtube Live. Egberto lives in Kingwood, Texas and was a self-employed software developer, web designer and mechanical engineer who gave it all up for political activism.
Egberto is an ardent Progressive Liberal who believes tolerance is essential. His favorite phrase is “political involvement should be a requirement for citizenship.” He believes that we must get away from the current policies that reward those who simply move money/capital and produce nothing tangible for our society. He believes if a change in policy does not occur, America will be no different than many oligarchic societies where a few are able to accumulate wealth while the rest are left out because it is mathematically impossible to catch up.