Congressional Candidate in Missouri’s 2nd District
Previously Aired On: Wednesday, June 4, 2008 – Listen to the Show!
Byron DeLear is running for the US House of Representatives and seeking the Democratic nomination for Missouri’s 2nd Congressional District in 2008.
DeLear is a recognized speaker and public advocate, media journalist/independent producer and a former Congressional candidate in 2006.
In 2007, Byron DeLear returned to the city and state he was raised in and came back home to West St. Louis County, Missouri.
While working with concerned citizens and activists opposed to the war in Iraq, local Democrats from West County urged Byron DeLear to oppose pro-war Republican Todd Akin for the 2008 US House election cycle.
Promising to provide “Real Security for Missouri and America”, DeLear has the kind of balanced political wisdom so necessary to restore vision and sanity to how Missouri is being represented and served in Washington, DC.
Personal and Professional Background
Byron Walker DeLear was born in 1966 in Northern California and raised in Town and County, Missouri. Attending the Middle and Upper School at The Principia, DeLear excelled in athletics, being an All-ABC League Football player his Junior year (’83) and made the St. Louis First All-Metro Team his Senior year (’84). His father an opera singer and mother a concert pianist and music teacher at The Principia, Byron attended Berklee College of Music in Boston, Massachusetts and eventually moved to Los Angeles to pursue a career as a media producer in the entertainment industry. DeLear has produced, written and performed on many major record labels and has worked in television and film production for 20th Century Fox.
Mr. DeLear’s experience in the private sector has been throughout a broad range of corporate settings including the entrepreneurial aspects of being an independent contractor, a department head of a small business, Vice-President of a startup company and working for a large multi-national corporation in the form of 20th Century Fox/Newscorp. These work experiences have given Byron a unique and informed perspective into the political needs and inner workings of our American economy, the workers it supports and the ramifications of the continuing process of globalization.
Events of 9/11 and Entry into Politics
After working for twenty years in Los Angeles as a media producer, the events of 9/11 inspired a profound change in Mr. DeLear’s life focus. Perceiving a gross absence of any real leadership or creative vision coming out of Washington in the aftermath of 9/11, DeLear followed the dictate of the saying “now is the time for all good men to come to the aid of their country” and made the decision to shift his skills and talent towards addressing the political and intercultural challenges facing our American family and world today.
In 2003, Mr. DeLear left his career in the entertainment industry and co-founded the nonprofit organization Global Peace Solution (GPS), a non-governmental organization (NGO) concerned with fostering peace through conflict resolution and promoting pluralism. After co-founding GPS with Ofer Lifschitz, Byron DeLear was a directing member of a delegation to the Middle East, meeting with high level leaders representing both sides of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
In the summer of 2004, GPS aligned its efforts with MIFKAD or “People’s Voice”, headed by Israeli Rear Admiral Ami Ayalon (ret.) and Al Quds University Dean Sari Nusseibeh. As the North American representative for MIFKAD, GPS helped promote a six-point peace initiative that to date has close to half-a-million signatories among Israelis and Palestinians (The Ayalon/Nusseibeh Initiative).
The Israeli-Palestinian conflict in many ways represents the nexus of the interreligious and cultural struggles that currently face the broader Middle East and America. Having the experience of working directly with NGOs and political efforts in this region has given Mr. DeLear a level of expertise and insight into some of the most pressing foreign policy concerns facing the United States today.
Mr. DeLear was the producer and host of the internationally broadcast Global Peace Network (GPN), which was delivered on two satellites covering North America, the Middle East and Europe, in addition to streaming on the internet. Broadcast on an Iranian network out of Southern California (XTV – SOSIRAN), the Global Peace Network focused on providing guests and topics to help promote pluralism and freedom of expression to the peoples living under the theocratic Iranian regime.
GPN’s first season had such notable guests as author and humanitarian Blase Bonpane, 2005 Nobel Peace Prize nominee and author Maryam Qudrat, celebrity activist Ed Asner, Air America Radio co-founder Sheldon Drobny, California Green Party representative Sara Amir and Ada Aharoni of the International Forum for Literature and Culture (IFLAC).
2005-2006 Debut Run for Congress
While an American observer to the formalization of the Asia-Pacific Greens Network held in Kyoto, Japan in 2005, DeLear was recruited by Mike Feinstein, the former Mayor of Santa Monica to run for the US House of Representatives opposing the pro-Iraq War position of Rep. Howard Berman in California’s 28th Congressional District for the 2006 midterm election.
In January of 2006, after delivering the United States Green Party (GPUS) rebuttal to George Bush’s State of the Union address, DeLear’s debut Congressional campaign received international notoriety and was covered by Corporate Social Responsibility Wire (CSR Wire), ImpeachPAC and AfterDowningStreet.org. Byron was a featured speaker at the 83rd Annual Liberty Hill First Amendment commemoration held in San Pedro, CA alongside Congresswoman Maxine Waters and California Gubernatorial Candidate Peter Camejo. He was a presenting panelist on “Peace and Sustainability” at the 2006 World Peace Forum held in Vancouver, BC.
Byron DeLear’s 2006 run for Congress was endorsed by Rex Weyler, co-founder of Greenpeace International, Marcy Winograd, President of the Progressive Democrats of Los Angeles, internationally renowned environmentalist Dr. David Suzuki, celebrity activists Ed Asner and Daryl Hannah, in addition to many other local community leaders, Democratic activists and office holders.
Most notably, Mr. DeLear’s 2006 Congressional run garnered political endorsements from across party lines as elected officials in the Democratic Party went against party by-laws to support the DeLear candidacy. This eventually led to Byron joining the Democratic Party in 2007.
In 2007, DeLear was a featured dignitary and speaker alongside Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa for the Bangladesh Day Parade and he delivered the keynote address at Rice University in Houston for the National Judicial and Disability Law Project (NJCDLP) conference.
Byron has trained in nonviolence tactics with civil rights leader Rev. James Lawson and conflict resolution with nonviolent communication expert Marshall Rosenberg. Mr. DeLear was an observer at the 12th General Assembly of the Asia Pacific Parliamentarians Conference on Environment and Development (APPCED) held on April 18, 2006 in British Columbia, Canada. DeLear has also been a member of the American Friends Service Committee’s (AFSC) Middle East Peace Education subcommittee; Physicians for Social Responsibility (PSR) Nuclear Nonproliferation and Disarmament Committee; International Forum for Literature and Culture Board Member (IFLAC); member group of the United For Peace and Justice Coalition (UFPJ); co-founder of the Friends of the Article V Convention (FOAVC); Board member of the Los Angeles National Impeachment Center (LANIC); World Board Member of the Unity-and-Diversity Council (UDC); Foreign Policy Consultant for the Israeli Political Party Brit Olam; co-founder of Global Peace Solution (GPS); a writing and publishing member of the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers (ASCAP); North American representative for MIFKAD or People’s Voice (Ayalon / Nusseibeh Initiative) and is a visiting lecturer at California State University, Northridge, Loyola Marymount University, University of Southern California (USC) and the Watershed University.
Additional Career Highlights, Credentials and Legal Experience
Byron DeLear was the first record producer to be represented by Miles Copeland’s management company Firstars Management, best known for developing the careers of The Police, Sting, Go-Gos, Bangles, etc. By the time he was 25, Byron had major label credits having produced and written for Capitol Records and RCA Records, and sang lead on a top thirty Adult Contemporary song he co-wrote and co-produced.
DeLear has produced material broadcast on CBS Television’s “The Late Show with David Letterman”, the National Geographic Channel and Fox. He has been a record producer with artists as broad as Miami Sound Machine to Warren Hill. His credits include dance remixing Billboard Hits, mixing a charting KISS concert DVD and has collaborated with many notable artists including Mick Taylor of the Rolling Stones, Grover Washington Jr. and singer-songwriter Meredith Brooks.
As an entertainment executive, Mr. DeLear has expert working knowledge in crafting publishing deals, copyright law and in framing and negotiating contracts. In 1999, he designed and equipped a state-of-the-art digital audio production facility while serving as the department head of the audio division at Passport International Entertainment. The first project produced in that facility was the 10-Hour miniseries, “The Remarkable 20th Century” hosted by the venerable Howard K. Smith broadcast on PBS and distributed in multiple markets around the world.
Byron collaborated with educator T.H. Culhane in 1994 composing the “Eutopia Curriculum” for the Los Angeles Charter School District. This curriculum, based on an ‘edu-tainment platform’, explored aspects of civilization and its lasting links to tribalism, incorporating the teachings of various world peace leaders like Martin Luther King Jr., Jesus Christ, Gandhi and John Lennon.