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U.S. Consulate News & Activities

Seminar “Promoting Entrepreneurship and Racial Inclusion within the Context of the Mega Sports Events” held in Salvador and in Rio de Janeiro

Rio de Janeiro, October 5, 2011

On October 3 and 4, U.S. Consulate General in Rio de Janeiro, in cooperation with the state governments of Bahia and Rio de Janeiro as well as the National Secretariat of Policies to Promote Racial Equality (SEPPIR) and the Rio de Janeiro Federation of Industries (FIRJAN), held seminars entitled “Promoting Entrepreneurship and Racial Iquality within the Context of the Mega Sports Events” in the cities of Salvador and Rio de Janeiro.  The events were developed as an initiative within the Joint Action Plan Brazil-United States to Promote Ethnic-Racial Equality (JAPER), and the Memorandum of Understanding about Cooperation to Support the Organization of the World Mega Sports Events, an agreement signed by U.S. Ambassador to Brazil, Thomas Shannon, and Brazil's Foreign Minister, Antônio Patriota, during the March visit of President Obama to Brazil.

Former Mayor of Atlanta, Georgia, Shirley Franklin, came to Brazil as the keynote speaker.  She shared with the Brazilian public the experiences which were implemented in Atlanta during the 1996 Olympic Games, aimed at promoting entrepreneurship and racial inclusion, as well as the Atlanta Olympic Committee Equal Economic Opportunity Report, which outlined the initiatives successfully implemented in Atlanta.  Mayor Franklin’s visit also included meetings and roundtables with government officials, NGOs, religious groups and Afro-Brazilian activists.

The Minister-Chief of the National Secretariat of Policies to Promote Racial Equality (SEPPIR), Luiza Bairros, opened the two seminars, joined by Governor of Bahia Jacques Wagner in Salvador.  Counselor for Public Affairs John Matel represented the U.S. Diplomatic Mission in the program in Bahia, while Rio de Janeiro Consul General Dennis Hearne participated in the opening dias in Rio.  The Government of Brazil and states of Bahia and Rio de Janeiro signed Protocols of Intention establishing federal-state collaboration to promote racial inclusion for the 2014 World Cup and 2016 Olympic Games.

Chairman of Fulton County Board of Commissioners, John Eaves, also participated in the programs in Rio and Bahia.  The Governor of Bahia publicly stated that he will sign a Memorandum of Understanding to enhance cooperation and exchanges between the state of Bahia and Fulton County, and both Chairman Eaves and former Mayor Franklin were invited to return to Brazil to pursue future collaboration.

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