Morning Fireside Chat
9:25am - 10:15am
Hon. Hakeem Jeffries
U.S House Minority Leader
Congressman Jeffries was unanimously elected House Democratic Leader by his colleagues in January of 2023. In that capacity, he is the highest ranking Democrat in the House of Representatives and the first person of color to lead a major party in the United States Congress. He is also the former Chairman of the House Democratic Caucus, Whip of the Congressional Black Caucus and Co-Chair of the Democratic Policy and Communications Committee, where he helped develop the winning For The People agenda for the successful 2018 midterm elections when Democrats reclaimed the House. Congressman Jeffries served as an Impeachment Manager in the historic first impeachment of President Donald J. Trump, becoming the first African American man to hold that position.
In Congress, Congressman Jeffries has emerged as a tireless advocate for safer communities, affordable housing and lower costs. Recently, he helped guide communities in Central and South Brooklyn through the devastating COVID-19 pandemic and subsequent economic crisis. He played a leading role in the passage of measures that will create jobs and make life better for everyday families, like the historic Bipartisan Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act and the Inflation Reduction Act.
Before his election to the House, Congressman Jeffries served for six years in the New York State Assembly. Prior to his career in public service, he practiced law at Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison LLP, and served as litigation counsel for Viacom Inc. and CBS. Congressman Jeffries received his bachelor’s degree at the State University of New York at Binghamton, earned a master’s degree in public policy from Georgetown University and graduated magna cum laude at New York University School of Law. Congressman Jeffries was born in Brooklyn, is a product of New York City’s public school system and lives in Brooklyn with his family.
NBC News 4 Anchor
One of the region’s most respected and accomplished television journalists, David Ushery is the anchor for NBC 4 New York’s 4 PM and 11 PM weekday newscasts. He is a member of the New York State Broadcasters Hall of Fame and a member of the National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences, New York Chapter’s Silver Circle, recognizing more than 25 years of journalistic excellence and service to the Tri-State.
Ushery’s anchoring and reporting was a key component of NBC 4 New York’s award-winning COVID-19 coverage, honored in January, 2021 with the prestigious Alfred I. duPont-Columbia University Award for “creat(ing) a 360 view in real time of the coronavirus pandemic, with courageous and thorough reporting on the virus’s explosion in New York City.” The duPont has long been recognized as the broadcast, documentary and on-line equivalent of the Pulitzer Prize, also awarded by Columbia University.
Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic and the periods of civil unrest following the murder of George Floyd, Ushery was a daily presence in WNBC’s 30 Rock studios, delivering the latest information to viewers while frequently transitioning to daily press conferences hosted by federal, state and local officials. He also took a closer look at the relationships between law enforcement and communities of color during this time, which included exclusive interviews with top NYPD brass. Following the recent death of Civil Rights icon John Lewis, Ushery secured an exclusive interview with long-time friend and former Congressional colleague Charles Rangel, who described marching alongside Lewis from Selma, AL to Montgomery, AL and offered personal insights on their shared work that spanned more than half a century.
For nearly two decades, Ushery has offered WNBC viewers a front row seat to the biggest news stories of the day. He has shared in two National Edward R. Murrow Awards presented to the station for coverage of Superstorm Sandy – as well as for the deadly 2019 police shootout in Jersey City.
In recent years, Ushery also reported from Houston following the death of former President George H.W. Bush, from Orlando following the deadly Pulse nightclub shooting and the White House for the transition between the outgoing Obama and incoming Trump teams. He covered Pope Francis’ 2015 visit to Washington D.C. and New York City live from the parade routes. Ushery also delivered live coverage following the 2012 Sandy Hook elementary school shooting and the miraculous 2009 landing of US Airways Flight 1549 in the Hudson River. He joined the station in 2003 following a decade at WABC-TV, where he rose from reporter to anchor.