RAAP

Contact Information

Renton African American Pastoral Group (RAAP)

RAAP members represent different faith groups from the African American community who work closely with the City of Renton and Renton Police Department. Renton’s police chief and one of the pastors co-chair the group. The two groups have developed a mutual vision to create a community of trust through collaborative efforts and partnerships between the African American community and the City of Renton.

Vision, Purpose and Mission

Vision

Create a community of trust through collaborative efforts and partnerships with African-American Pastoral leaders, Police Department and Mayor’s office.

Purpose

Identify barriers and opportunities that will aid the city in achieving both the short-term and long-term goal of becoming an informed, inclusive city with opportunities for all.

Mission

  • Conduct a series of regular face-to-face discussions to strategize and identify barriers and opportunities within the City of Renton.
  • Develop and/or host workshops, trainings, and open houses to educate and empower the community to work in collaboration with each other.
  • Develop an ongoing forum for improving communication, understanding, trust, and mutual respect.
  • Be a visible presence in the community to work to resolve conflicts in a meaningful and respectful manner.
  • Solicit ideas and means to aid the city in its efforts to recruit and hire a more diverse workforce.

Leadership

Renton Mayor Denis Law“The purpose of this pastoral group is to facilitate a frank and open dialogue about how we can encourage and improve communication, involvement, understanding, trust and respect in the Renton community in general, and more specifically between the Renton Police Department and the African American community in Renton.”

Denis Law, Mayor of Renton

Rev. Dr. Linda Smith“We are very pleased to join with the City of Renton to be the change we want to see in our community. We believe that change will mirror what ‘justice for all’ looks like to the world. Our goal is to engage our community, educate our youth, strengthen relationships with law enforcement, and review and revise policies and practices to promote equity.”

Rev. Dr. Linda Smith, Executive Director & Pastor at SKY Urban Empowerment Center,
RAAP Team Lead

Ed VanValey Chief of police“Our work with the African-American Pastoral Group has created incredible opportunities for all involved. Identifying barriers, enforcing fairness, and most importantly building real friendships within our community. This partnership supports the City in achieving both the short and long-term goal of becoming an informed, inclusive City with opportunities for all. The Renton Police Department is committed to continuing this partnership and strengthening our connection with the citizens of Renton.”

Ed VanValey, City of Renton Police Chief, Co-Chair

Membership

James Barnett, Still Waters Ministries
Toni Booker, MLK Memorial Baptist Church
Michael Booker, MLK Memorial Baptist Church
William Crockett, MLK Memorial Baptist Church
Ken Curl, MLK Memorial Baptist Church
Robert Harrison, Mayor’s Office, Team Support
Benita Horn, Renton Inclusion & Equity Consultant, Facilitator
Harry Johnson, Kingdom Christian Center
Frances Johnson, Heavenly Sent Christian Ministry
Kevin Keyes, Renton Police Deputy Chief
David Leibman, Renton Police Commander
Randy Maxwell, Renton Seventh Day Adventist
Gail Mullen, Victorious Life Christian Center
Christopher Robinson, CryOut!
Joe Palmer, Follow the Light Koinonia Church
Jon Schuldt, Renton Police Deputy Chief
Preeti Shridhar, Mayor’s Office, Team Support
Dr. Linda Smith, SKY Urban Empowerment Center, Co-chair
Michael Thomas, Radiant Church
Ed VanValey, Renton Police Chief, Co-chair
Carl Vinson, MLK Memorial Baptist Church
Donald Ward, Sr., Daystar Baptist Church
Johnny J. Youngblood, MLK Memorial Baptist Church

Events and Accomplishments

2015

JANUARY 19: Living Hope Christian Fellowship: Martin Luther King Jr. Event
MARCH 16: First meeting; Charter adopted
JUNE 20: Community Dialogue: “Focus on Youth”
OCTOBER 19: First prayer to provide visibility and support
NOVEMBER 11: Community Dialogue: “Focus on Parents”

2016

FEBRUARY 15: Community Dialogue: “Real Issues, Real Solutions: Workshops on Education, Social 
Issues, Law & Justice, and Employment”
FEBRUARY 21: Black History Month at SKY Church “Let’s Talk” involving Renton Police Officers
MARCH: MLK Memorial Baptist Church forum: Commander Kevin Keyes and Officer Corey Jacobs
APRIL 9: Cops, Kids and Teens Youth Day
JULY 4: City of Renton 4th of July Celebration information table
October 12: Unity March

2017

January 23: Set Goals for 2017
February 13: Black History Month at Living Hope Christian Fellowship “American Traveling History Museum”
March 4: Reconcile Community Summit in partnership with CryOut!
June 2 & 3: Community Police Relations Dialogue Pilot
July 17: Tough Conversations: “Black Lives Do Matter”
September 28: 2nd Annual Unity March
October 20: ”Faith over Fear” Standing with our Muslim Neighbors

2018

February 22: Black History Month at SKY Church “Realizing the Dream”
March 19: Reducing Gun Violence dialogue with King County Prosecutors
May 21: Youth Violence, Gun Violence dialogue with Renton youth
June 16: 1st Renton Juneteenth Celebration
November 8: Unity Forum

2019

February 28: Black History Month at SKY Church “Realizing the Dream”
June 22: 2nd Annual Renton Juneteenth Celebration
July 20: African American Male Wellness Walk in Renton

Click to download a pdf of the RAAP brochure

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