Born and raised in Houston, Jesse Muhammad, affectionately known as Brother Jesse, is an award-winning journalist, blogger, experienced community organizer, news analyst, social media strategist and touring motivational speaker.
Muhammad has served as a staff writer for “The Final Call” newspaper since 2005 and also is the newspaper’s social media manager. He has received Blog of Year honors from the annual Black Weblog Awards, recognized as one of the Top 40 Under 40 people in Houston by the “Houston Business Journal” and won top honors in Media/Journalism category of the Inaugural Black Man Can Awards.
He has helped to mobilize and organize for social justice issues such as the case of The Jena Six, Hurricane Katrina, the case of Troy Davis, Black on Black violence, domestic violence against women, disparities in education and more.
His weekly news segment, “The Word With Brother Jesse,” can be heard at 1:30 p.m. every Wednesday on Sound of Soul (S.O.S.) Radio hosted by ZIN on Houston’s KPFT 90.1FM.
Shelby A. D. Moore is a tenured professor of law at South Texas College of Law in Houston, Texas. She was the Godwin Pappas, Langley Ronquillo Research Professor from 2003-08. During her 16 years as an academic, she has taught Criminal Law, Property I and Property II, Torts I and Torts II, Criminal Corrections, the Politics of Race in America and Wills, Trusts and Estates.
She has received a number of awards for her teaching as well as for her willingness to mentor students. Moore has published widely, primarily in the areas of criminal law and social policy. She is an expert in domestic violence issues and has been consulted on a number of cases and has appeared in the national media on television shows such as “48 Hours Mysteries.”
Prior to entering academia, she practiced as a litigator in Maryland, focusing on civil litigation. Prior to teaching at South Texas College of Law, she was a prosecutor at the Baltimore City State’s Attorney’s office where she practiced in a number of divisions, including Felony and Special Felony Narcotics.
Moore earned an LL.M. from Harvard Law School, a J.D. from University of Baltimore, and a BA with an emphasis in Law Enforcement/Criminal Corrections as well as and a minor in English from Towson University.
Dorris Ellis Robinson has been the publisher-editor of “The Houston Sun” since 1983. She also serves as a visiting professor in the Texas Southern University Department of Political Science. Ellis also serves as the president of Friends of Emancipation Park, a volunteer organization.
Ellis, a native of Lexington, Miss. is the fifth of 10 children, earned her bachelor’s and master’s degrees from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Illinois studying political science, communication, speech and journalism. She is currently writing her proposal for a Ph.D. at Texas Southern University.
An avid volunteer, the mother of four is currently working to revitalize the historic 141-year-old Emancipation Park in Houston. She has amassed $5 million from public sources and is currently working to raise funds from corporations, foundations and grants to improve the building and grounds and to bring program that support healthy living.
Tyrone Tillery, associate professor of history at the University of Houston, is a scholar of U.S. history who specializes in African-American and civil rights history. He received his Ph.D. from Kent State University.
Tillery has served as the executive director of the NAACP, Detroit Branch. He is the winner of the 1993 Gustavus Myers Center Outstanding Book Award on the subject of intolerance in the United States.
Tillery’s undergraduate classes include African-American history since 1877, 20th Century Black Protest, The Harlem Renaissance, and Introduction to African-American Studies. Tillery teaches graduate seminars in the Civil Rights Movement, Literature and History of the Harlem Renaissance, and the Life and Times of W.E.B. Du Bois.
Dr. Tillery’s book “Claude McKay: A Black Poet’s Struggle for Identity” received a “book of note” from the “New York Times.” He has been invited as a commentator by the Southwestern Historical Association and the Fourth Annual Conference on Latino Issues. He is currently doing research on the history of race and intergroup relations in Detroit from 1943 to 1968.
Harris County Treasurer Orlando Sanchez has lived in Houston since 1962 when his father was recruited by former Harris County Judge Roy Hofheinz to be the Spanish voice of the Colt 45s and the Houston Astros.
Sanchez grew up in southwest Houston and graduated from Bellaire High School. In 1976, Sanchez volunteered for service in the U.S. Air Force. After being honorably discharged, he again volunteered with the 147th Fighter Interceptor Group of the Texas Air National Guard at Ellington Field.
Sanchez is a cum laude graduate of the University of Houston.
In 1995, Sanchez was elected to serve as a member of the Houston City Council, where he served three terms. Sanchez also chaired the city’s International Trade Committee, the Legislative Affairs Committee and the Cellular Tower Working Committee. He has served on the Texas Attorney General’s Municipal Advisory Committee and was appointed to the U.S. Senate Task Force on Hispanic Affairs.
Sanchez is a member of the Board of Directors of Capital Bank, a life member of the Houston Livestock Show & Rodeo, a 100 Club of Houston member and is an advisory member of the University of Houston Law School Foundation.