LA NAACP President Resigns Amid Sterling Scandal | NBC 10 Philadelphia

LA NAACP President Resigns Amid Sterling Scandal

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    NEWSLETTERS

    The president of the Los Angeles NAACP announced his resignation just days after the nation's oldest civil rights group withdrew Donald Sterling's lifetime achievement award. Robert Kovacik reports for the NBC4 News at 11 p.m. Thursday, May 1, 2014. (Published Friday, May 2, 2014)

    The president of the Los Angeles chapter of the NAACP has resigned.

    President Leon Jenkins resigned, the NAACP said in a statement.

    "Please be advised  that the legacy, history and reputation of the NAACP is more important to me than the presidency," Jenkins said in his resignation letter. "In order to separate the Los Angeles NAACP and the NAACP from the negative exposure I have caused the NAACP, I respectfully resign my position as President of the Los Angeles NAACP."

    The national office of the NAACP is developing guidelines for its branches to help them in their award selection process.

    The move comes days after the nation's oldest civil rights group withdrew Clippers owner Donald Sterling's lifetime achievement award.

    "I just found (the award) mindboggling," civil rights leader and former LA police commissioner John Mack said. "Don Sterling had a well-known track record as an old-fashioned racist, a plantation type."

    The NBA banned Sterling for life and fined him $2.5 million Tuesday for making racist comments. Sterling can have no association with the league or the team.

    In addition to rescinding the award, the NAACP announced it would return previous donations by Sterling.

    "Basically, it really felt like our pride and our respect was for sale by the organization, like if you just write a check, youre all good with black people and that really wasn’t the case," community advocate Jasmyn Cannick said.

    Civil rights attorney Leo Terrell has known Jenkins for 20 years. He told NBC4 that he believes Jenkins didn't resign, and instead, he was forced out.

    “If the NAACP LA chapter believe that this matter is resolved by his resignation – forget it,” Terrell said.

    NBC4's Robert Kovacik reached out to Jenkins, but Jenkins did not return his calls Thursday.