Smitherman Wins NAACP Appeal

Former Cincinnati City Councilman Christopher Smitherman has won an appeal filed with the NAACP’s national headquarters seeking a new election for the local branch’s presidency.

The NAACP’s national board of directors has voted that the Cincinnati branch must hold a new election, according to a press release issued today from Edith Thrower, the branch’s current president.

Smitherman, who is seeking the presidency, had said Thrower shouldn’t have served on the branch’s Election Supervisory Committee or acted as its chair because candidates for office are prohibited from serving in that capacity. Also, Thrower inconsistently applied rules about which new memberships were eligible to vote in the election, to stack the deck in her favor, he said. Smitherman alleges about 30 people were allowed to vote in the November election who didn’t make the filing deadline. For the most part, those people were Thrower’s supporters.

In initial tallying, Smitherman won the election in a 134-125 vote, defeating Thrower. After the Election Supervisory Committee reviewed some contested ballots, however, some were deemed ineligible and Thrower won by one vote. Different standards were applied to determine membership status and who was eligible to vote, according to Smitherman.

In a press release, Thrower — who previously opposed having a new election — states, “We are excited about having a new election. Although much of the local controversy surrounding the Nov. 28, 2006, branch election has been exaggerated, to say the least, a new election should resolve any reservations by our membership. The integrity of the branch must come first. Without it, it is impossible to effectively manage any organization.”

Apparently saying the very least about the matter, Thrower didn’t elaborate on what items in particular were “exaggerated.”

The date and time of the Cincinnati branch’s election hasn’t been determined, but will be announced soon, the release stated.

— Kevin Osborne

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5 Comments on “Smitherman Wins NAACP Appeal”

  1. Markisha Says:

    Oh yes, Thrower is excited about a new election. About as excited as one can get after having been told you screwed it all up.

  2. Monica Says:


    You may want to check the facts of your post. Namely Edith Thrower did not serve on the Elections Supervisory Committee, she was as you say barred from doing so. The person who was the chair of the committee and ultimately made several questionable decisions was A. Victor Brown. Decisions which included but were not limited to allowing persons to vote who could not prove membership. This is just another of example of the CityBeat being out of touch with the Black Community. This story and its details have been raging in the Black Community for weeks yet you managed to completely foul up the facts of the story. This could be an example of an occasion where affirmative action in practice at CityBeat would be helpful.

  3. WestEnder Says:

    So why don’t you write up an op-ed yourself and send it in? Why don’t you start a blog about the black community? What’s stopping you? The white conspiracy? Your preference for complaining over action?

  4. Monica Says:

    Oh WestEnder…I do not have to start a blog. If Citybeat is going to publish an article no matter the medium whether online or print, than they have the obligation to make certain that the information provided is accurate. If not CityBeat loses whatever credibility they have. As it relates to this story it has been brewing for months now and the principle players should be well known to any news reporter and there was absolutely no excuse for Kevin Osborne to get so many of the pertinent facts incorrect.

  5. Anonymous Says:

    westender, there’s a difference between starting a blog and having a newspaper. This was newsworthy and the media has done a crappy job of covering. The Cincinnati Beacon has provided the best coverage and the do it for free.

    Are you suggesting she start her own paper?

    Thrower’s lover Victor Brown tried to steal the election. He took challenged ballots home. They were supposed to be counted by the official tellers before the regular votes were counted. He didn’t produce the membership roster at the time of the election, probably because he wasn’t on it.

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