David E. Glover, Thank You!

David E. Glover

By Paul Cobb The community of Oakland and beyond will gather Saturday, June 1 at 1:00pm, at the First Presbyterian Church of Oakland, to honor David E. Glover for his prodigious body of advocacy work for the causes of justice, equity, fairness and economic opportunity. His parents Rose and Philmore Glover worshipped at the same church. His advocacy was believable because he was larger than his words. He practiced what he preached about fearlessly speaking up and speaking out for participation in governmental decision-making. He built the housing that others dreamed of. He crossed the digital divide, more than a decade ahead of his time,  to provide technology training to the oft-forgotten youth and the formerly incarcerated. He convinced low-income residents that there’s a future for them, while simultaneously convincing Fortune 500 Executives that their futures, too, were inextricably tied to their willingness to help underwrite the underserved. Even while accepting grants from the powerful, he granted them no quarter when they were neglectful or foreclosed on the poor. Without any notes, or prepared briefs, he would rise to the occasion to drop a dime on businesses or officials that bypassed minority businesses. He understood how to market the message for the need to reverse the urban-to-suburban-cash-flow-drain through local-hire initiatives. He trained community and faith-based groups on how to write winning grants He also gave faith leaders the faith to challenge elected and selected leaders to do right. For more than 33 years, he trained community leaders, was the sergeant-at-arms for guaranteeing citizens’ participation in government acting director. In 1979, I first hired acting director Sondra Phillips-Alexander, to manage OCCUR and later David. Together, they helped build the organization. David succeeded me as Director of OCCUR. And, the city and nation watched him blossom  as a selfless gifted speaker, organizer and journalist, advocate for economic justice. He was a master communicator who was even more effective because he listened. As a  journalist he could  detach himself to describe his own  accomplished. He often visited me and Chauncey Bailey on deadline to help us fact-check from his own recall. David, my wife Gay, my brother Michael, and I, remained close during the past 30 years. We talked nearly daily about sports, politics, religion and issues of race and fairness. As my father said of him “David talked as good as he wanted to and better than he should have.” He often stood at 14th and Broadway holding court with passers-by carrying his bag full of issues and messages. My office, located in the adjacent building less than 10 feet apart afforded us the chance to see other working daily. True to his biblical namesake, David the Psalmist, his words will inspire us to continue to support his family and his causes. David Glover had our backs when we needed him.  David, I got your bag and the dime that was left at the bottom. I will carry them forward. See insert inside
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