Urban Angel Profile of the Day: Khalid Shah – Stop the Violence Increase the Peace Foundation

by Kim Anthony

Today’s Urban Angel Profile [was originally published] on the day that the 2010 Nobel Peace Prize winner (http://www.nobel.no/) is announced.  And it couldn’t BE more appropriate! :) Our 9th Urban Angel Profile is man who really needs no introduction to most, and has for more than 20 years dedicated his life to ending the cycle of violence in not only Los Angeles, San Bernardino, Riverside counties but throughout the Southern California region.  In fact, his impact has been felt throughout the U.S and certainly throughout the world.  His name is Khalid Shah and he is the Founder and Senior Advisor of Stop the Violence and Increase the Peace Foundation.

Khalid Shah was a founding member of Stop the Violence Increase the Peace Foundation in 1989. The Stop the Violence movement got its start on the east coast with the advent of the hip hop community, Rappers like Chuck D and other east coast rappers were credited with coining the phrase which quickly spread to southern California neighborhoods which at the time was the epicenter of a violent trend that would ultimately engulf the country and other parts of the world

“The music was crazy, the videos were crazy it was as if somebody had created this insane cocktail of social conditions and gave a toast to American youth, in particular, black and brown youth. And the youth, in turn, reciprocated,” said Khalid Shah. “We were not trying to blame our youth for that kind of exploitation we were just trying to make them and others aware of what the industry was doing, not just making money, but creating a new social reality,”

The focus, at that time, was on the rise of violent youth and gang crimes in the cities of Compton, Watts, Hawthorne, Lynwood, Torrance, and South Los Angeles.

In the late 1980s and early 90s, Los Angeles experienced a record number of youth and gang homicides with more than 1,000 gun-related killings, each year.

In response, Stop the Violence Increase the Peace Foundation, under the leadership of Mr. Shah, held conferences and community meetings throughout Southern California. He staged sit-ins, marches and boycotts to increase awareness.

Mr. Shah helped to raise millions of dollars to provide services to thousands of youth and families in Los Angeles, Riverside and San Bernardino Counties.

Khalid Shah, no stranger to the streets himself, having grown up in the Inner-city of South Los Angeles spent over a decade in prison in his late teens and knows first hand the importance of community intervention and support for a generation of youth, who are becoming increasingly involved in the criminal justice system.

“I was successful because of the grace of almighty God and the fact that my community was there to support me. My children both went to college not jail. They became professionals not gang-members or a burden on society. While we are spending more and more money on prison and incarceration, we must look at increasing access to a quality education. According to statistics, when kids start failing in the third grade, their chances of failing in society and chances of going to prison increases by 85%” Their failure not only defines who they are as individuals, BUT WHO WE ARE AS A SOCIETY!”

– Khalid Shah

Credits and Accomplishments:

  • 1989 Founder and Executive Director – Stop the Violence, Increase the Peace Foundation
  • 1992 appointed to the Advisory Board for Violence Prevention of Greater Los Angeles
  • 1994 Organized First Peace Conference and Concert in L.A. County after the Gang Truce
  • Appointed member of Los Angeles Police Department’s Leadership Council
  • (1996 Living History Maker Award) Category, Anti-Violence)
  • July 2002 – Appointed Human Affairs Commissioner, City of Inglewood
  • December 2002 – Appointed first Chair of the Inter-Agency Gang Task force for Los Angeles County – Region 10
  • March 2003 – Invited by former California Governor Gray Davis to sit on the California Workforce Enforcement Board in Sacramento California
  • June 2004 Organized County and Statewide Collaboration, with Law Enforcement and community members after the videotaped police beating of 17 year old Donavan Jackson.
  • February 2005(Inglewood Cease Fire Project) help organize a cease fire with gang leaders, law enforcement and businesses, reducing homicides from (25) to (2) the following year.
  • January 2006-December 2009 Mr. Shah organized three annual regional conferences involving hundreds of organizations from around the southern California region.
  • June 2010 Mr. Shah and the regional coalition of agencies helped to open the Inland Empires first Train the Trainer extended college Gang Prevention Course     for community leaders at Cal State San Bernardino.
  • Mr. Shah Has received more than seventy (70) City, State, County and Congressional awards for work in the community.

His work has been featured in both the Los Angeles and New York Times; La Opinion, National Public Radio (NPR News); CNN; Inside Edition; and KCET where he spoke to issues of gun violence, violence in schools, youth and gang violence and most recently the violent abduction of 17 year old Norma Lopez in the City of Moreno Valley, California, where Mr. Shah helped organize a group of over 2,000 community residents and volunteers to participate in public meetings with school officials, law enforcement and neighborhood watch groups.

THE REDEMPTION CHRONICLES: A HISTORY OF ACTIVISM

Khalid Shah is alss Executive Producer, visionary and driving force behind the Redemption Chronicles, Khalid Shah, in collaboration with legendary Director Bill Duke (The Killing Floor, A Rage in Harlem, Sister Act 2, Deep Cover, Hoodlum and most recently, Cover and Not Easily Broken) along with a host of Hollywood insiders, have come together to produce, what filmmakers believe will be much more than movie, but instead, the beginning of a movement!

For more information about Stop the Violence the Violence Increase the Peace Foundation and the Inland Empire Violence Prevention Coalition visit:

http://www.facebook.com/khalidshah

Email: ieviolenceprev@yahoo.com

ABOUT URBAN ANGEL PROFILES OF THE DAY

Urban Angel Profiles of the Day highlights individuals, celebrities and unsung heroes alike, who are using their time, talent and treasure to make a positive difference in urban communities.  If you would like to nominate an Urban Angel to be featured please email their name, organization/cause, attached or linked photo, bio and website and Facebook Profile Page to: UrbanAngelProfiles@Live.com  or…send the above-requested information via Facebook Inbox Message to:http://www.Facebook.com/KimAnthony

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