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At a press conference in the chapel at NAACP headquarters in 2004, Kweisi Mfume announces his resignation as president and CEO of the esteemed civil rights organization. At right is Julian Bond, chairman of the board.
At a press conference in the chapel at NAACP headquarters in 2004, Kweisi Mfume announces his resignation as president and CEO of the esteemed civil rights organization. At right is Julian Bond, chairman of the board. (André F. Chung/Baltimore Sun)

The recent article in The Baltimore Sun, “A secret vote pushed Kweisi Mfume out as NAACP leader amid 'growing dissatisfaction’ with his performance, records show,” (Jan. 17), merely shows that when Kweisi Mfume was the NAACP president, occasionally there was friction between him and Julian Bond, the board’s chair. That is understandable. They were both strong-willed leaders, and Mr. Mfume aggressively brought needed changes to the NAACP.

When Mr. Mfume took over, the NAACP was in trouble, with $4 million in debt and major staff problems. He took bold actions that saved our oldest civil rights organization. When he left after nine years, the NAACP was on solid footing and had a financial surplus.

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Even though Mr. Mfume and Mr. Bond disagreed on some matters, the NAACP renewed his initial contract with a salary increase. After getting the NAACP back on track, they negotiated an amicable departure that was confirmed by the board.

As to the gender accusations, when Mr. Mfume later ran for the U.S. Senate in a hotly contested election, he was endorsed by the National Organization for Women, the experts at evaluating candidates on women-related issues.

Larry S. Gibson, Baltimore

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