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Stockton, California’s youngest—and first African American—mayor to present Carleton convocation

January 17, 2017

Michael Tubbs, a 26-year-old community organizer who overcame personal hardship to become one of the youngest elected officials in the nation, will present the Carleton convocation on Friday, Jan. 20. In his presentation, Tubbs will reflect on the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and the need for everyone to become involved in creating the beloved community—King’s prescription for a healthy society—in his address entitled, “What Happens to a Dream Deferred?”

Convocation is held from 10:50 to 11:50 a.m. in the Skinner Memorial Chapel and is free and open the public. Convocations are also recorded and archived for online viewing at

A native of Stockton, California, Tubbs was born to a 16-year-old single mother and an incarcerated father. In spite of the odds, he earned a full scholarship to Stanford University. At Stanford, he was selected out of 6,000 undergraduate students to be the Founder’s Day speaker—the first freshman in the 117-year history of the university to do so. During his time at Stanford he co-founded a task force to end racial profiling in Palo Alto. After graduating from Stanford, having earned his bachelor’s degree with honors and the highest university distinction, he returned to his hometown of Stockton and became the youngest city council member in the city’s history. Then in November 2016, he made history in his landslide victory, earning more than 60 percent of the citywide vote, as the city’s first Black mayor and one of the youngest majors of a major city in the country.

Tubbs has dedicated his life to improving the Stockton community, leading efforts to create significant initiatives toward solving a myriad of problems in the city. He also worked with the White House to help craft the administration’s strategy for engaging with mayors and city councils nationwide. While receiving multiple awards and honors for his service, the impetus behind Tubbs’ experiences and accomplishments has been his desire to create opportunities and positive outcomes for those in his community. 

Tubbs has served as a voting member of Stanford University’s Board of Trustees Development Committee, worked with the Children’s Defense Fund on their campaign to stop the Cradle to Prison Pipeline, and has served as president of Stanford’s NAACP. He also is a member of both Stanford’s Black Community Services Alumni Advisory Board and the Coca-Cola Scholars Foundation Alumni Advisory Board.  In addition, Tubbs serves as the Founder and Executive Director of The Phoenix Scholars, which to date has worked with over 300 students statewide in gaining acceptances to colleges and universities. Tubbs has been honored as a City of Stockton Architect of Peace, a Truman Scholar for his commitment to public service, and a Rhodes Scholarship Finalist.

Awards and accolades include: “Top 4 Power Player Under 40” by Black Enterprise Magazine, “Top 25 under 25” by The Root, Reader Digest‘s “50 Things to Love About America”, University of Southern California Presidential Scholar, American University Frederick Douglass Scholar, the cover story of Quest magazine, Martin Luther King Youth of the Year,  Alice Walker Essay Contest Winner, California Youth Ambassador, captain of the inaugural NAACP National Great Debate Champions. Tubbs is also winner of the Inaugural Google Bold Distinguished Alumni Award:  For dedication to building the next generation of leaders in our community. More at

For more information, including disability accommodations, call (507) 222-4308. The Skinner Memorial Chapel is located on First and College Streets in Northfield.