Seattle's Uncle Bob: A Champion of Community Collaboration for the Greater Good!

At last week's Seattle Urban Indian Health Conference, the newly elected NCUIH Board Members, Conference attendees, and I had the wonderful opportunity to be inspired by one of Seattle’s own--International District activist and pioneer of Coalition Building, Uncle Bob!

Uncle Bob, also known as Robert “Bob” Santos, is a recognized spokesperson and leader of the movement that began in the 1970s to preserve Seattle’s Chinatown/International District. He is a second generation son of Filipino immigrant Sammy Santos and an “Indipino” (Native American /Filipino). Now an author of the recently published book, “The Gang of Four”, Santos delivered a rousing conference luncheon presentation about the importance of networking, cultivating relationships and coalition building between ethnic groups and races.

Bob Santos

Inspiring, compelling, funny, and intriguing are a few words that best summarize our reaction to Uncle Bob's message. And it is a very timely message given that today America is still racially divided in so many ways, and continues to be challenged with race relations across the board. Uncle Bob championed the importance and value of taking a community-based approach to mobilizing and capacity building for the greater good of the community. His story is best described as a community-based demonstration of an urban community that had great vision and fortitude to work for community health and wellness. I now look forward to reading the book, which was gifted to NCUIH by the Daybreak Star Indian Cultural Center, an urban base for Native Americans in Seattle founded by Gang of Four activist, Bernie Whitebear, and others.

By Maurice "Mo", Smith, posted on Wednesday September 2, 2015

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