Noted Black Lives Matter activist and the former mayoral candidate for the city of Baltimore DeRay Mckesson has been named interim chief human capital officer for the city’s school districts.

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Mckesson was appointed by incoming schools CEO Sonja Santelises, and was chosen for the position based on his prior experience as a reforms strategist—among them a special assistant within the same, ominously-named office—along with his many other laurels.

“He has the depth of knowledge of the system, and he has proved that he can lift the work in a short amount of time,” Santelises told The Baltimore Sun. “And he has proven his dedication to the children of Baltimore.”

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She also cited his “hand-on experience, leadership skills, and energy” as some of his outstanding qualifications.

Along with Santelis, who will take up her new role on Friday, Mckesson also spoke to the press about the appointment.

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“At its core, this role is about finding great people, matching them to the right role, and helping them to develop and experience careers in the service of our kids,” said the activist. “I am excited to return to city schools…and to continue doing the work to ensure that every child in Baltimore City receives a world-class education.”

Mckesson’s new position comes months after he finished sixth in Baltimore’s mayoral primary this past April, garnering roughly 2.5% of the vote.


Contact the author at jamie.reich@jezebel.com.

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Image via Getty.