BALTIMORE – Black Lives Matter activist DeRay Mckesson is quitting his day job as a Baltimore city schools administrator to focus full time on agitating.
“For the past year, I’ve been the Chief Human Capital Officer for @BaltCitySchools,” Mckesson posted to Twitter last week. “I’m leaving this month. It’s been an incredible year.”
Baltimore city schools CEO Sonja Santelises hired Mckesson as an interim chief human capital officer last year, prompting criticism from some and praise from others. Mckesson previously worked as a school administrator in Minneapolis schools before leaving the profession to protest against alleged police brutality against blacks in Ferguson, Missouri and Baltimore, according to the Baltimore Sun.
He also ran unsuccessfully for the mayor of Baltimore last year, coming in sixth in the Democratic primary. The Baltimore native is popular on Twitter with about 856,000 followers, and his focus on police brutality and racial tensions have made him the darling of liberal elites like President Obama and Hillary Clinton, “who dubbed Mckesson a ‘social media emperor.’”
The 32-year-old initially made himself famous by chronicling Black Lives Matter protests on social media and he continued that work while employed in the $165,000-a-year position in Baltimore schools. Shortly after taking the job, Mckesson was arrested at a protest in Baton Rouge, Louisiana and was forced to defend his actions to the school board.
Throughout his time in Baltimore schools, Santelises continuously defended Mckesson, whom she tasked with overseeing a $4 million budget and 56 employees.
She continued to heap praise on the social justice warrior when she announced that Mckesson will be leaving the district by the month’s end.
“There is no way we would have made it through this first year without DeRay’s leadership,” she told the Sun. “I say that unapologetically and with great assuredness. He is leaving us in such a better position. He is one of the rare people who can talk about equity and then is not afraid to put boots to the ground and do the hard work that yields equity.”
Mckesson – best known for wearing a blue, puffy Patagonia vest to protests – also patted himself on the back.
“We placed the vast majority of principals by July 1 this year and last year,” he told the Sun. “I managed the implementation of the layoffs in a way that allowed as few people to be laid off as possible. We originally announced 1,000 layoffs, and we laid off less than 150 people.”
Mckesson also praised himself on Twitter, where he assured his followers that he remains committed to fighting against police across the nation.
“I’ve led a team of approx. 50 staff with a district of 11,000 employees & > 175 schools. Kids deserve great teachers. Staff deserve support,” he wrote. “The current school system and CEO is incredible. I wanted to support her first year. Now is time for me to devote more time to organizing.
“I love Bmore. & I know they (sic) transformative change will only occur when we are as organized on the inside as the outside. Lead everywhere,” Mckesson posted.
Baltimore Teachers Union President Marietta English doesn’t seem too upset about Mckesson’s departure from the school district.
She told the Sun that layoffs under Mckesson were “nothing short of a humiliation for those who were dismissed while in the middle of classroom instruction.”
“I hope the new person assigned to this position will help us to turn the page on this chapter and work with the Baltimore Teachers Union to fill vacant positions with our teachers and paraprofessionals who were laid off, our educators who have a proven record of being committed and dedicated to the students they teach, the families the serve, and the schools in which they work,” English said.
Mckesson told the Sun he plans to remain in Baltimore and focus on his social justice activism, which includes a podcast titled “Pod Save The People” and multiple lawsuits involving police agencies.
Business Insider reports Mckesson filed a class action lawsuit against Baton Rouge police over allegations of excessive force during his arrest last August.
In July, a Baton Rouge officer filed a lawsuit against Mckesson and several other Black Lives Matter leaders for allegedly inciting and encouraging violence against police that left several officers dead and at least one permanently disabled.
According to The Washington Post:
More specifically, it claims the movement and rhetoric of its leaders inspired a decorated former U.S. Marine sergeant to unleash a torrent of bullets upon Baton Rouge police on July 17, 2016, leaving three officers dead and another three injured — including the plaintiff, identified only as Officer John Doe Smith in the lawsuit.
The officer, a 42-year-old father of two who worked in law enforcement for 18 years, was left “permanently disabled” when bullets struck his abdomen, shoulder and head during the methodical ambush by 29-year-old Gavin Long at a convenience store.
It’s unclear how exactly Mckesson funds his social justice work, but The American Mirror reported last year that he listed his address at a Baltimore home owned by James and Robin Wood during his run for mayor.
The Woods are wealthy philanthropists who give generously to the Open Society Institute, the massive multibillion dollar “charity” headed by George Soros.