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Wayne County Commission Chair Alisha Bell welcomed guests to national economic forum

Wayne County Commission Chair Alisha Bell welcomed elected officials from throughout the U.S, and presidential candidates Cory Booker, Amy Klobuchar, Wayne Messam, and Andrew Yang to the National Organization of Black County Officials 2019 Economic Development Forum, which was held May 1-4 at the Marriott Renaissance Center in Detroit.

U.S. Sen. Booker (D-NJ) addressed forum attendees at Thursday's breakfast and U.S. Sen. Klobuchar (D-Minn.) spoke to attendees during Friday's luncheon. Messam, mayor of Miramar, Fla., also spoke at Friday's luncheon. Yang, a former tech entrepreneur, addressed the forum Saturday.

Chair Bell is a member of the NOBCO Board of Directors and is a past president of the National Association of Black County Officials, an affiliated organization.

Forum attendees also included actor Hill Harper, star of television's "The Good Doctor," who hosted a forum closing reception at his Detroit home, The Historic Charles Fisher Mansion.

Harper also served as master of ceremonies at Friday's inaugural NOBCO Lifetime Awards Gala, which honored U.S. Rep. Brenda Lawrence (D-Southfield), Susan L. Taylor, author and former editor-in-chief of Essence magazine, Heritage Optical founder George Barnes and Detroit native Barbara Ross-Lee, the first African American woman to become a medical school dean.

The gala featured entertainment by singer Rhonda Ross, daughter of Motown legend Diana Ross.