Black Lives Matter activist DeRay Mckesson is quitting his day job as a Baltimore city schools administrator to focus full time on agitating.
“For the past year, I’ve been the Chief Human Capital Officer for @BaltCitySchools,” Mckesson posted to Twitter last week. “I’m leaving this month. It’s been an incredible year.”
Baltimore city schools CEO Sonja Santelises hired Mckesson as an interim chief human capital officer last year, prompting criticism from some and praise from others. Mckesson previously worked as a school administrator in Minneapolis schools before leaving the profession to protest against alleged police brutality against blacks in Ferguson, Missouri and Baltimore, according to the Baltimore Sun.
He also ran unsuccessfully for the mayor of Baltimore last year, coming in sixth in the Democratic primary. The Baltimore native is popular on Twitter with about 856,000 followers, and his focus on police brutality and racial tensions have made him the darling of liberal elites like President Obama and Hillary Clinton, “who dubbed Mckesson a ‘social media emperor.’”
The 32-year-old initially made himself famous by chronicling Black Lives Matter protests on social media and he continued that work while employed in the $165,000-a-year position in Baltimore schools. Shortly after taking the job, Mckesson was arrested at a protest in Baton Rouge, Louisiana and was forced to defend his actions to the school board.
Throughout his time in Baltimore schools, Santelises continuously defended Mckesson, whom she tasked with overseeing a $4 million budget and 56 employees.
She continued to heap praise on the social justice warrior when she announced that Mckesson will be leaving the district by the month’s end.
“There is no way we would have made it through this first year without DeRay’s leadership,” she told the Sun. “I say that unapologetically and with great assuredness. He is leaving us in such a better position. He is one of the rare people who can talk about equity and then is not afraid to put boots to the ground and do the hard work that yields equity.”
Mckesson – best known for wearing a blue, puffy Patagonia vest to protests – also patted himself on the back.
“We placed the vast majority of principals by July 1 this year and last year,” he told the Sun. “I managed the implementation of the layoffs in a way that allowed as few people to be laid off as possible. We originally announced 1,000 layoffs, and we laid off less than 150 people.”