These days, U.S. Rep. Cedric Richmond (L ’98) seems busier than ever: meeting with President Donald Trump one day, advocating for Louisianans recovering from tornadoes the next and then pivoting to ask for an FBI probe into the number of black girls going missing in Washington, D.C.
As new chair of the Congressional Black Caucus, the fourth-term House member from New Orleans is gaining increasing national influence. And on May 20, he’s set to share some of his experiences with Tulane University Law School’s Class of 2017 as graduation speaker. The diploma ceremony is scheduled for 4 p.m. at Avron B. Fogelman Arena in the Devlin Fieldhouse, near the law school’s John Giffen Weinmann Hall on the Uptown campus.
Tulane’s university-wide commencement is at 9 a.m. in the Mercedes-Benz Superdome, with Academy Award winner Helen Mirren as keynote speaker.
Richmond was one of the youngest-ever Louisiana House members when he was first elected to office not long after receiving his law degree. He spent 11 years in the legislature and chaired the Judiciary Committee. In 2010, he won a seat in Congress, where he serves on the House Homeland Security and Judiciary committees. He represents a district that encompasses much of New Orleans and runs across nine parishes to Baton Rouge.
U.S. Rep. U.S. Rep. Cedric Richmond (L ’98), dubbed “the Babe Ruth of the Congressional Baseball Game,” one year sported Tulane gear for the annual sporting contest between Democrats and Republicans.
Richmond was elected to chair the 49-member CBC in the fall and led the group in its first meeting with Trump, where the group presented him with a 129-page briefing book titled “We Have A Lot to Lose: Solutions to Advance Black Families in the 21st Century.”
Caucus leaders wanted to “engage in candid conversations with the president,” Richmond told NPR after the March 22 meeting. Among other things, they told him that his proposed budget “really makes it harder for poor people, black and white, to rise out of poverty,” and that harsh language Trump has used about African American communities, such as describing them as war zones, “is not helpful” to improve communities.
Richmond also has established himself in another realm on Capitol Hill — as a star whose hitting stats prompted The New York Times to call him “the Babe Ruth of the Congressional Baseball Game.” The game is a long-running annual charity event where the competition is intense but less rancorous than in the political sphere. Richmond played baseball at Morehouse College, and Democrats won five straight games with him on the mound, until Republicans prevailed in 2016.
Richmond also graduated from the Harvard University Executive Education Program at the John F. Kennedy School of Government.