Suppressed: The Fight to Vote

Suppressed: The Fight to Vote Film Series
BWOPA Oakland/Berkeley Chapter is thrilled to co-sponsor a film series featuring the documentary movie "Suppressed: The Fight to Vote."
Suppressed tells the story about Stacey Abrams' 2018 fight to become the first Black female Governor in the U.S. and how the vote was suppressed to deny her a victory. The film weaves together personal stories from voters across the state of Georgia to paint an undeniable picture of voter suppression. It features experts, poll watchers and everyday Georgians speaking to the reality of voter suppression and the threat it poses in 2020.
In a race that was ultimately decided by 54,723 votes, Suppressed exposes that the basic constitutional right to vote continues to be under siege in America.
BWOPA, has joined with the OEBDC, Xi Gamma Omega Chapter of Alpha Kappa Alpha,  John George Democratic Club, Progressive Democrats of America-Oakland, the Black Young Democrats of the East Bay (BYDEB), and the Block-by-Block Organizing Network (BBBON) to co-host this film series.
The film will air on the following dates at the locations listed below. You can RSVP by clicking on the date and time!
  • 1/7, 6:30 pm Oakland Public Library - 1021 81st Avenue, Oakland
  • 1/8, 6:30 pm Greenlining Institute, 360 - 14th Street, Oakland
  • 1/10, 6:15 pm Oakstop - Ruth Beckford Room, 274 - 14th Street, 3rd Floor
  • 1/14, 6:30 pm Oakland Public Library - 1801 Adeline Street, Oakland
  • 1/15, 11:00 am Allen Temple Gardens Senior Housing, 10121 International Blvd., Oakland
  • 1/15, 6:30 pm Heart and Soul Center of Light, Imagining Justice Program, 1001 - 42nd Street, 1st Floor, Oakland
  • 1/28, 6:30 pm Oakland Public Library - 125 - 14th Street, Oakland
This heart-wrenching film is directed and produced by Robert Greenwald, and distributed by Brave New Films. The screenings are all free and open to the public. Spread the word and bring a friend! 
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Local Candidates General Election Forum 2018

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Rank Choice Voting 2018

What is Ranked-Choice Voting?

Ranked-Choice Voting or "Instant Run-Off Voting," allows voters to rank up to three candidates, in order of preference, when marking their ballots. Ranked-choice voting eliminates the need for run-off elections, and is approved for use in Berkeley, Oakland and San Leandro.

Does my vote still count if I vote for the same candidate three times?

Yes. Your vote will count only once for that candidate.

Does my vote still count if I only select one choice?

Yes. Your vote will count for your one choice.

Who is elected using a Ranked-Choice Voting ballot?

Berkeley voters use Ranked-Choice Voting to elect the Mayor, Members of the City Council, and the City Auditor. Oakland elects its Mayor, City Council members, City Attorney, City Auditor, and School Directors using Ranked-Choice Voting. San Leandro uses Ranked-Choice Voting to elect its Mayor and City Council members.

How are Ranked-Choice votes counted?

With Ranked-Choice Voting, if a candidate receives a majority (50%+1) of the first-choice votes cast for that office, that candidate will be elected. However, if no candidate receives a majority of the first-choice votes cast, an elimination process begins. The candidate who received the fewest first-choice votes is eliminated. Next, each vote cast for that candidate will be transferred to the voter's next-ranked choice among the remaining candidates. This elimination process will continue until one candidate receives a majority and is deemed the winner.

How Do I Mark The Ranked-Choice Voting Ballot?

The Ranked-Choice ballot card is designed in a side-by-side column format and lists the names of all of the candidates in three repeating columns. This format allows a voter to select a first-choice candidate in the first column, a second-choice candidate in the second column, and a third-choice candidate in the third column. Voters will connect the head and tail of the arrow next to the name of the candidate they choose.

Must I rank three candidates for each office?

No. A voter may—but is not required to—rank three choices for each office. If there are fewer than three candidates for the same office, or to rank fewer than three candidates, you may leave any remaining columns blank.

If I really want my first-choice candidate to win, should I rank the candidate as my first, second and third choice?

No. Ranking a candidate more than once does not benefit the candidate. If a voter ranks one candidate as the voter's first, second and third choice, it is the same as if the voter leaves the second or third choice blank. In other words, if the candidate is eliminated that candidate is no longer eligible to receive second or third choice votes.

Can I give candidates the same ranking?

No. If a voter gives more than one candidate the same ranking, the vote cannot be counted. Only one candidate can represent the voter's first, second, or third choice.

Can I write a candidate's name on my ballot in any column?

Yes. Each column provides space for qualified Write-In candidates. Only qualified Write-In candidates can receive votes. After writing the name of the qualified candidate, be sure to connect the head and tail of the arrow next to the space.

Will there be a subsequent run-off?

No, Ranked-Choice Voting eliminates the need for run-off elections.

What if I have further questions?

If you have further questions about ranked-choice voting, please call the Alameda County Registrar of Voters Office at (510) 272-6933.

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2018 Primary Recommendations

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About Oakland/Berkeley Chapter


  • LaNiece Jones, Chapter President
  • Peggy Moore, 1st Vice President
  • Irella Blackwood, 2nd Vice President
  • Chantal Reynolds, 3rd Vice President
  • Danielle Motley, Danielle Bellino Driver, Treasurers
  • Larene Pare, Simone Thelemaque, Secretary
  • Camile Duria, Parlimentarian
  • Eileen Pippins, Rita Forte, Historians


  • Voter Registration | Irella Blackwood | Rita Forte 
  • Political Action Chairs |  Chantal Reynolds | Danielle Motley
  • Membership Co-Chairs  | Tatiana Larkin
  • YYAC Chair   | Ericka Harris* | Camile Duria*
  • Hospitality Chair | Larene Pare


2018 Meeting Dates
* Thereafter Monthly on 4th Saturday.  Locations tbd
General Membership Meeting
Saturday, February 10, 2018. 11am
Red Bay Coffee HQ's, 3089 East 10th, Oakland
Special Event - Women's History Month Celebration
Powerful Women of the Bay
March 9th, 11:30am - Scott's Seafood Pavilion
Special Event - Women's History Month Celebration
Black Girls Night @ the Oracle Arena w/ the Warriors vs. Pacers
March 27th, 6pm 
Membership Event - Women's History Month Celebration
Women Run the World
March 28th, 5:30pm - 8pm, Au Lounge, Broadway

       Leadership Monthly Meetings 



       May/June Campaign / GOTV

              Irella Blackwood | Pamela Price | Measure A


       General Membership Meeting

             Wednesday, June 13th

             Greater St Paul Church


        Oakland Family Day

            Sat. June 23rd, 12noon - 4pm

            Verdese Carter Park



[ 2018 MEMBERS ]  Irella Blackwood | Latoya Calvo | Hon. Gay Cobb | Lois Corrin | Gloria Crowell | Shirley Coaston | Lazandra Dial |  Karen Davis | Kamika Dunlap | Camile Duria | Relena Ellis | Jamila English | Tamika Greenwood  | Larene Pare | Nichole Jordan | April Madison-Ramsey  | Brendylnn Goodall |  Loren Taylor** | Phyllis White-Ayanruoh | Kimberly Mayfield | Tammy Willis |  Rebecca Kaplan** | Anne Williams | Barisha Spriggs | Tanya Washington | Patricia Brooks | Tracey Edwards Moore* | Chantal Reynolds* | Denise Lombard | Carolyn Abbott | Natasha Middleton | Alessia Simmonds | Jammelia Ali | Robyn Fisher | Buffy Wicks** | KaDijan Brown* | Sheng Thao** | William Riley | Chamia Chambers 


[ LIFETIME MEMBERS ] Alfreda Abbott | Anita M Black | Mildred Oliver | LaNiece JonesFran David** | Melanie Shelby | Yolanda Smith | Tina Marie Laguerre | Libby Schaaf**

"LIKE" BWOPA Oakland/Berkeley Chapter on FACEBOOK

Questions - email LaNiece Jones, [email protected]

* payments in progress   ** not a voting member


BWOPA Oakland/Berkeley Chapter Officers 2018-2020


LaNiece Jones - President

LaNiece spent over 15 years working in corporate sales and marketing roles at Businessland, Citicorp, IBM, AT&T/Comcast.  In 1991, LaNiece founded lajones&associates, a marketing public relations and events firm, which now specializes in organizational strategy, electoral campaigns and community organizing.

The Oakland native attended Oakland public schools, earned her Bachelor’s degree from CSU Hayward and Master’s degree from Pepperdine University in Los Angeles in Social Entrepreneurship & Change.

LaNiece is passionate about designing programs, events and initiatives to increase the efficiency and productivity for social business, social enterprises and community organizations.  Her particular interest is supporting black women to be authentic leaders and building coalitions to empower the community-at-large for economic success.

LaNiece serves as BWOPA/TILE's Executive Director since 1995, is a past President of Metropolitan Greater Oakland Democratic Club (MGO) and appointed member on the KQED Community Advisory Panel.


Peggy Moore - 1st Vice President


Irella Blackwood - 2nd Vice President

Chantal Reynolds - 3rd Vice President

Chantal Reynolds is a Bay Area native.  She has worked in public policy, education, and in the private, non-profit, and public sectors of municipal and federal government in San Francisco, Oakland, Los Angeles, California and Newark, New Jersey.  She earned her Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of California, Berkeley in History, where she also minored in Education and African American Studies.  She earned her Master of Arts degree in History from the Federated Department of History at Rutgers University and the New Jersey Institute of Technology (NJIT).

Chantal has served as staff for a member of Congress in the United States House of Representatives and as Legislative Director for an Oakland City Councilmember.  She has worked on local public policy in education and public safety as a Program Analyst staffing a Commission for the City of Oakland.  Chantal has also worked in the Field Operations Department for the national office of the NAACP providing direction and support to NAACP units operating within the Western Region of the United States. 

She has worked as an educator teaching in public schools in Oakland and Los Angeles, California and as an instructor in Newark, New Jersey.  She serves on the Measure A Citizen’s Bond Oversight Committee for Peralta Colleges.  She was a state delegate of the California Democratic Party and served on the county’s Alameda Democratic Central Committee.  Chantal is also a member of a number of political and civic engagement organizations. 


Simone Thelemaque - Secretary 

Immediate Past President, BWOPA/TILE inaugural 2015 cohort & 2016 DWJ Public Policy Senior Fellow 

Simone has worked alongside nonprofit organizations and community leaders in capacity building and organizational development for over a decade.  She has focused on community engagement, raising awareness around emotional intelligence, strength based coaching and empathy-based practice as tools for effective, innovative organizational transformation. In 2015, she founded Table 4 All, a food redistribution organization fighting hunger in Alameda County. 

Simone is passionate about healing inter-generational trauma within black and brown communities by working to dismantle systems, institutions, and personal practices. Her work centers self-identifying womxn, non-traditional students, and LGBTQIA communities uplifting restorative practices that promote the healing of trauma due to racism, sexism, and homophobia.

Simone is working toward earning her Bachelor's in two areas of discipline: Organizational Psychology and Women's Studies at Cal State East Bay. Outside of "work", you can catch her being a fairy, challenging narratives, reading, exploring affordable but tasty restaurants, dancing in the sun, and playing alongside her nine year old child.  Email Simone @ [email protected]

Treasurers - Danielle Motley, Danielle Bellino Driver

Parliamentarian -  Camile Duria
Historians - Eileen Pippins, Rita Forte
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