Sharpton aide signs on to Espaillat campaign

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Adriano Espaillat. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig)
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Now there are two Al Sharpton associates working to unseat Rep. Charlie Rangel.

LaMon Bland, the national field director for the National Action Network, and an aide on Rangel’s 2012 campaign, has agreed to work for State Senator Adriano Espaillat, who announced a re-match against Rangel last month.

Bland is a lawyer who also worked on the 2009 campaign of Rangel ally Inez Dickens in her City Council re-election campaign. He’ll join the Espaillat campaign after helping oversee the National Action Network’s annual convention next month.

According to his bio on N.A.N.’s website, Bland "led the day-to-day campaign operation for Congressman Charles Rangel 2012 re-election campaign, to include implementing overall campaign strategy, overseeing direct mail process and managing field operations.”

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At N.A.N., Bland helps train new members and chapter leaders and “also acts as a senior representative of the NAN national office throughout the nation.”

In January, another associate of Sharpton, Rev. Michael Walrond, declared his candidacy for the congressional seat. Walrond is the director of the Ministers Division at N.A.N., which he joined in 2012, after successfully building up his own congregation at the First Corinthian Baptist Church, in Harlem. Among Walrond's donors are N.A.N.'s chairman of the board, Fanklyn Richardson; N.A.N. board member Donald Coleman; and the organization's former executive director Tamika Mallory.

The Observer first reported the news of Bland's hire.