J. Whyatt Mondesire

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J. Whyatt Mondesire (October 14, 1949 – October 4, 2015) was a reporter at The Philadelphia Inquirer during his early career. At the time of his death, he was owner of the Philadelphia Sun newspaper, and was president of the Philadelphia branch of the NAACP for over a decade.


Jerome Mondesire was born in 1949[1] to Dominican Jerome Alexis Mondesire, a follower of Marcus Garvey, and Winnifred Taylor Mondesire.[2] He later studied journalism at City College of New York.

During the early 70s, Mondesire wrote for the Baltimore Sun and later The Philadelphia Inquirer where he became City Desk Editor.[2]

In 1980, Mondesire was chosen as Chief of Staff for Representative William Gray,[3] where he worked until Rep. Gray resigned in 1991. Following this, he founded the Philadelphia Sunday Sun.

In 1996 Mondesire was elected head of the NAACP's Philadelphia branch.[4] Membership increased substantially during his tenure.[5]

In April 2014, Mondesire and 3 board members were suspended by the national NAACP over questions about the use of chapter funds, which were allegedly misdirected to his nonprofit organization, Next Generation CDC.[6][7] On December 6, Nation of Islam minister Rodney Muhammad was elected as the new president of the Philadelphia NAACP.[8]

Mondesire died on October 4, 2015 at Thomas Jefferson University Hospital in Philadelphia of a brain aneurysm.[9]

Criticism of Donovan McNabb[edit]

In December 2005, Mondesire criticized Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Donovan McNabb, calling him, "mediocre at best." He went on to say, "And trying to disguise that fact behind some concocted reasoning that African American quarterbacks who can scramble and who can run the ball are somehow lesser field generals ... is more insulting off the field than on." Mondesire said this after he criticized McNabb for running with the football less. Mondesire also asserted that McNabb shares the blame for Terrell Owens' departure from the team.[10]

McNabb responded by saying, "If you talk about my play, that's one thing. When you talk about my race, now we've got problems. If you're trying to make a name off my name, again, I hope your closet is clean because something is going to come out about you ... I always thought the NAACP supported African Americans and didn't talk bad about them. Now you learn a little bit more."[11]


  1. ^ NAACP Biography
  2. ^ a b "The Honorable Jerome W. Mondesire". The HistoryMakers. Retrieved 2014-07-11. 
  3. ^ "He Tends Gray's Home Base". Philadelphia Daily News. 1989-06-01. Retrieved 2014-07-28. 
  4. ^ Matza, Michael; Lubrano, Alfred (November 17, 1996). "Naacp Vote Puts Editor In Charge Jerome Mondesire, 47, Was Elected In A Record Local Turnout.". Philadelphia Inquirer. Retrieved 2014-07-16. 
  5. ^ Infield, Tom (1998-02-04). "Putting The Naacp Back On The Local Map J. Whyatt Mondesire Has Broadened The Membership And Brought More Political Clout.". Philadelphia Inquirer. Retrieved 2014-12-07. 
  6. ^ Lin, Jennifer (2014-04-13). "National NAACP suspends Mondesire and three local board members". Philly.com. Retrieved 2014-12-05. 
  7. ^ Williams, Damon C. (2014-01-24). "Mondesire responds to NAACP funding allegations". Philadelphia Tribune. Retrieved 2014-12-05. 
  8. ^ Gammage, Jeff (2014-12-06). "Minister Rodney Muhammad chosen to head Phila. NAACP chapter". Philadelphia Inquirer. Retrieved 2014-12-07. 
  9. ^ Civil rights leader, journalist Jerry Mondesire dies at 65, CBS News
  10. ^ "Local NAACP head isn't running from his criticism of McNabb". CBS SportsLine. 2005-12-14. Archived from the original on 2005-12-17. Retrieved 2014-07-16. 
  11. ^ "'He doesn't get it' - Local NAACP head stands by criticism of McNabb". Sports illustrated. December 14, 2005. Archived from the original on Dec 18, 2005. Retrieved 2013-06-24. 

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