Jitu K.Weusi, formerly known as, Leslie R. Campbell, a longtime educator and activist made his transition on May 22, 2013. Born and raised in Brooklyn, NY, Jitu had many accomplished achievements in education, politics, activism, social justice and music.
Jitu began his career in education with the New York City Department of Education (DOE) in September of 1962 as a founding member of the African-American Teachers Association (ATA). He was widely known for his involvement in the Ocean-Hill/Brownsville conflict that proved to be instrumental in bringing about changes nationwide in community control of public education. In the late 60’s Jitu left the NYC DOE and opened the first Black independent private school for inner-city youth: Uhuru Sasa Shule (Freedom Now School). The school was one of the founding member schools of the Council of Independent Black Institutions (CIBI), an international umbrella organization for independent schools.
Among his political accolades, Jitu was essential in forming the New York Chapter of the National Black United Front (NBUF); African-Americans United for Political Power, which was a vital force in the election of Mayor David Dinkins; and, he worked vigorously on Reverend Sharpton’s campaign to become the first black US Senator from New York.
In 1970, Mr. Weusi was the principal operator of the East Cultural and Educational Center, where he presented Jazz programs weekly which featured Freddie Hubbard, Max Roach, Betty Carter, Roland Kirk, Gary Bartz, Randy Weston, Pharoah Sanders, McCoy Tyner, Hugh Masekela, Sun Ra and a host of other performers.
Mr. Weusi, an avid enthusiast, collector of and writer on Jazz music, served as the chairperson of the Central Brooklyn Jazz Consortium for several years.
He made his transition at home with family on May 22, 2013. The family is making arrangements for his burial. However, they will begin to celebrate and honor his life on Saturday, May 25th, 2013 from 2pm-8pm at For My Sweet, 1103 Fulton Street in Brooklyn, NY. The community is invited to stop by and share their memory of Jitu.
(Submitted by the family)