The Sacramento Bee has been running profiles on first-term members of the California Legislature, and its latest focus was on our very own Assemblymember Tony Thurmond.
We encourage all local residents to read the Bee’s profile, which published Monday.
According to the profile, Thurmond as a child moved to Philadelphia to be raised by his cousin after his mother passed away and his father, a Vietnam veteran, struggled with post-trauma. Thurmond said he was fortunate to not have to end up in the foster care system.
“We know the outcomes for most kids who end up in systems: they more times than not are homeless, incarcerated, don’t get much education,” Thurmond told the Bee. “They don’t have a chance to go to college and become city council members, school board members, Assembly members.”
Thurmond became student body president at Temple University and went on to work in nonprofits with disadvantaged youth. Through that work, he learned how to “press government officials for more funding and better services,” the Bee said.
Thurmond would later serve on the Richmond City Council and West Contra Costa Unified School District, but expressed some regret that he did not pursue a singing career, which in the past included a stint with a band and a San Francisco gospel choir.