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Pfizer And The National Newspaper Publishers Association Collaborate To Raise Awareness Of Sickle Cell Disease And Need For Improved Patient Care

NEW YORK, NY, March 24, 2017 – Pfizer Inc. (NYSE:PFE) and the National Newspaper Publishers Association (NNPA), a trade association of more than 200 African-American–owned community newspapers from around the United States, are collaborating to raise awareness of sickle cell disease, a lifelong and debilitating genetic disorder that affects red blood cells.

People with rare diseases, like sickle cell disease, have unique and complex challenges. The first initiative under the collaboration will be a national poll, conducted in partnership with Howard University’s Interdisciplinary Research Team in Washington, DC. The goal is to assess the awareness of sickle cell disease, the challenges of living with the disease, and the importance of clinical trial participation in helping researchers succeed in developing potential new treatments. In a review of 174 sickle cell disease trials, difficulty enrolling patients was the stated cause in nearly half of the 30% of the trials that were terminated early.

“This collaboration with Pfizer provides an opportunity for NNPA to inform and educate the readers of our 211-member Black-owned newspapers in more than 70 markets across the country on sickle cell disease, an often misunderstood disease that has a profound impact on the health and well-being of those affected,” said Dr. Benjamin F. Chavis, Jr., NNPA President. “Together with Pfizer, we look forward to providing sickle cell disease education that can underscore the importance of improving quality of care in the community.”

Sickle cell disease is the most common inherited blood disorder in the United States, affecting nearly 100,000 Americans. Although it affects many different ethnic groups, the majority of people with sickle cell disease are of African descent. In the United States, sickle cell disease occurs in approximately 1 out of every 365 African-American births. Access to care and delivery of innovative treatments prove to be among the most significant challenges faced by people living with sickle cell disease in America.

“At Pfizer, we are committed to delivering life-changing therapies to people living with rare diseases, like sickle cell disease,” said Kevin Williams, Chief Medical Officer for Pfizer’s Rare Disease unit. “Our commitment also goes beyond clinical research to supporting the rare disease community through innovative collaborations. Working together, we hope to improve awareness and ultimately address the unmet medical needs of sickle cell disease patients.”

The poll results and information about sickle cell disease will be shared with the NNPA network and incorporated into educational programs at NNPA events. More information about sickle cell disease can be found at www.pfizer.com/health-and-wellness/health-topics/sickle-cell-disease. For more information about the NNPA, please visit www.nnpa.org.

[1] Lebensburger JD, Pair L, Hilliard L, et al. Systematic review of interventional sickle cell trials registered in clinicaltrials.gov. Clin Trials. 2015:12(6);575-583.

[2] Sickle Cell Disease Research & Care. National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute. US National Institutes of Health.https://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/news/spotlight/fact-sheet/sickle-cell-disease-research-care. Accessed May 26, 2016.

[3] Sickle Cell Anemia. American Society of Hematology. http://www.hematology.org/Patients/Anemia/Sickle-Cell.aspx. Accessed May 26, 2016.

[4] Data & Statistics. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. https://www.cdc.gov/ncbddd/sicklecell/data.html. Accessed January 25, 2017.

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DNC Partners with the NNPA to Reach Black Voters

Donna Brazile, the interim chairwoman of the DNC, said that minority voters will play a critical role in the success of Democrats in November. This photo was taken during a 2014 press conference at Democratic National Committee headquarters in Washington, D.C. (Freddie Allen/AMG/NNPA)

WASHINGTON, D.C. — On Thursday, October 6, the National Newspaper Publishers Association (NNPA), the nation’s largest trade association of African American-owned newspapers and media companies, announced that the Democratic National Committee (DNC) has planned a national advertising campaign with the trade group to reach Black voters.

“This is our first national ad buy, this year, with one of the two major political parties,” stated Dr. Benjamin F. Chavis, Jr., the president and CEO of the NNPA. “With all of the talk about how important the Black vote is in 2016, it is significant that it was the DNC that made the strategic decision to buy print ads with the NNPA. It was a wise, respectful and timely decision, and will unquestionably help to raise public awareness in the Black community about the importance of voting in 2016.”

In an earlier statement, Donna Brazile, the interim chairwoman of the DNC, said that minority voters will play a critical role in the success of Democrats in November.

“The future of the country is at stake,” said Brazile. “We know how critical it is to reach voters where they are, and the DNC is determined to remind voters that the best way to protect the tremendous progress we’ve made, under President Obama’s leadership, is to elect Democrats across the country from the courthouse to the White House.”

The DNC’s half page ad titled, “Protect Our Legacy,” includes the text: “The next president will either build on Barack Obama’s legacy or tear it apart. On November 8th, vote for Democrats so we can keep this country moving forward.”

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Hillary Clinton Looks to Build African American Base with Top Staffers

As the presidential candidates sprint towards the November 8 election, the Clinton campaign has turned to seasoned, Black political strategists to boost voter turnout in the African American community.

Last month, the Clinton campaign hired Nadia Garnett to lead strategic efforts as the African-American Vote Director.

“We have a theory,” Garnett said. “You have to meet people where they are. Where they eat, where they play and pray. We want to make sure that the African-American community understands the secretary’s commitment and I don’t think people fully understand her story.”

Garnett has displayed her skills in ways that few have. In addition to serving as national political director for the Center for Community Change, Garnett was also special advisor in the Office of Presidential Personnel at The White House.

She also served as eastern state director for The Atlas Project, a political research and data firm that works with electoral and issue advocacy campaigns. There, she coordinated campaign staffers, political consultants, and state experts regarding their role in developing, managing and executing campaign plans in presidential election years, according to her bio.

NBC BLK reported that Tamia Booker will serve as the director of African-American outreach and Zina Pierre will work with pastors and Black churches as the campaign’s African-American faith director. The Clinton campaign tapped Joel Payne to be the director of African-American paid media and LaDavia Drane is the campaign’s deputy director of congressional affairs.

Marlon Marshall, who serves as director of state campaigns and political engagement for Clinton, is as seasoned as any individual in any political camp.

“I’ve been blessed to be a part of this and I’m proud of our team,” said Marshall, 36. “Thirty-seven percent of our team out there in the states are people of color. We work hard to hire people who look like us.”

The St. Louis-born resident possesses a broad portfolio that includes helping the campaigns of John Kerry and now presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Rodham Clinton.

Marshall’s colleague, Garnett is also far from a political novice.

Garnett has worked with pollster Cornell Belcher at his Washington, D.C.-based Brilliant Corners and Garnett once served as a field director for the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee’s Independent Expenditure.

Together, the new hires could be viewed as the face of the Clinton campaign in the Black community. But, they also do much more in trying to help the former First Lady and Secretary of State become the nation’s first woman president.

They are Clinton’s eyes and ears and they lead her efforts to make sure her message is known in every state, including where the assumption is that the GOP will ultimately carry that particular territory.

As Kerry’s southern political director, Garnett also helped to establish and strengthen political relationships with Democratic National Committee members, Congress, state and local elected officials and grassroots activists in Arkansas, Florida, Louisiana and Virginia.

Once a key White House aide, Marshall has remained the highest-ranking African-American staffer on any presidential campaign. He organized for John Kerry in 2004, joined Clinton’s campaign in 2007, and then worked on both of Barack Obama’s campaigns.

The St. Louis native also served as the national field director for the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee – the first Black person to hold that role.

Marshall joined the White House staff in September 2013.

In a Nov. 2015 CNN profile, several Clinton aides credited Marshall with helping to create a diverse campaign team at the state and upper staff level.

Plugged in staffers have helped Marshall to make sure the campaign is tuned in with what people are talking about.

When, for instance, video surfaced of a Black high school student getting yanked from her chair by a school resource officer in South Carolina, a digital staffer flagged the incident and Marshall coordinated the campaign response.

One of his most important tasks is helping the Clinton campaign navigate a cultural and political terrain that includes a new civil rights movement, viral racial incidents and the waning tenure of the nation’s first Black president.

“I do feel that our message is getting across, especially given that a first-time candidate like [presumptive GOP presidential nominee] Donald Trump is getting so much media attention,” Marshall said. “Trump is temperamentally unfit and he’s divisive. Trump is out for himself and he’s not who Americans want as president of the United States.”

Both Marshall and Garnett said Clinton believes in developing and maintaining a strong economy for all Americans and working with U.S. allies.

When noting Trump’s slogan of “Making America Great Again,” Marshall said it’s just talk.

“Secretary Clinton believes in working together,” he said. “Trump has catchphrases, but he’s unfit and he will not succeed.”

Marshall continued: “She’s fighting to bring back jobs and what’s also important to her, obviously with the horrible things that have with the [police shootings], there’s a huge need for criminal justice reform.”

In part, Clinton wants resources for training police officers. She also has a global view of the future and what needs to be done, he said.

“One reason I’m excited about her is that she gets it,” Marshall said.

It’s also important to recognize that Clinton has previously been elected to office and knows the ins-and-outs of politics and the needs of American citizens, Garnett said.

Garnett added: “You don’t need someone who doesn’t understand these things.”

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