It is with pleasure that I submit this testimonial for Eric Dillard. I met Mr. Dillard during the more turbulent years of the late 60s, in NewArk, New Jersey. We were members of the Committee for a Unified NewArk and the Congress of African People. During that time, Mr. Dillard was a community organizer and a Martial Arts instructor, as well as being involved in national and international political activities. From that time to now, Mr. Dillard has shown a consistent passion for justice, political empowerment, consciousness, and peace.
The fact that Mr. Dillard has formed The Wellness Consortium with the purpose of bringing folks together so that we can use our inherent talents to serve others for the betterment of all is a testament to his ongoing desire, passion, philosophy and leadership.
Blanche C Jones
Banner House Ventures, LLC
Eric Dillard is teaching me Tai Chi, and it has proven to be a thoroughly life changing experience. He is extremely patient and knowledgeable; and between sessions, Eric constantly shares information that expands my knowledge, mentally and spiritually.
I also know Eric as the leader of The Wellness Consortium, where I have observed him to be an effective leader who is truly committed and dedicated to the purpose.
Janet S. Young, Ph.D.
Wholistic Nutrition Specialist
Owner,The Natural Pathway, LLC
Eric Dillard has been deeply involved in this work for over twenty years. I have seen him work in voter registration, educating people about the democratic process, help residents of Irvington, NJ learn how to combat a city wide rodent problem, he has worked with politicians attempting to help them become more responsive to the needs of their constituents and at one point he worked with me.
From 2003-2008 I ran a service organization for New Jersey’s independent filmmakers called the NJ Movie Maker’s Network. Our goal was to provide filmmakers with information that could help move their projects forward. Eric was very effective in training me and helping me understand how to organize a specific group of people. He also consulted with me continually so I could learn how to articulate our struggle to state leaders. People often get “Hollywood” confused with independent filmmakers who have projects that reflect issues Hollywood ignores. With Eric’s guidance we were able to provide meaningful training, workshops and other events that really helped our members.
Eric Dillard has been an active and consistent organizer for civil and human rights
for more than 40 years. His commitment to justice and equality has been
demonstrated through his work to empower communities and improve education.
Mr. Dillard brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to the development of
programs that uplift communities.
Dr. Michael Simanga
Writer/ Cultural Worker/ Educator
Eric and I are Martial Artist from nearly 50 years of association. He is also my friend. When I suffered a stroke in 2002 he was a regular visitor, motivator, and companion. When I was released from the hospital - I came straight to the Dojo. Eric brought me. Like I said: He is my friend.
I am writing this testimonial on behalf of the Wellness Consortium, and it founder Eric Dillard. I have known Mr. Dillard for ten years, and I have worked with him closely in a number endeavors during this time period. One of the major areas of focus for Mr. Dillard has been to address the health issues plaguing inner cities. He has been one of the early advocates in Essex County New Jersey of empowering residents of inner cities throughout the county to become more aware of critical health issues important to them. Mr. Dillard initially shared his views on the politics of health care when we worked together on the National Hip Hop Political Convention.
In 2004 I helped organize the National Hip Hop Political Convention in Newark, NJ, and Eric Dillard served as a mentor for those of us who organized this event. He was especially helpful in bringing together the Intergenerational Panel Discussion/Dialogue that kicked off the week long National Hip Hop Political Convention. Mr. Dillard secured a couple of the panelists willing to participate in forums regarding health and wellness in urban areas, and he helped us younger activists navigate the complex Newark political landscape to ensure that the 2004 National Hip Hop Political Convention was successful. Without question, Eric Dillard is that rare individual who can function as both a committed and serious grassroots activist, as well as a seasoned political operative.
In the summer of 2004, as a result of our work on the National Hip Hop Political Convention, Mr. Dillard organized a symposium on asthma at First Congregational Christian Church in Irvington, NJ, and I was one of the panelists. The purpose of this symposium was to bring awareness to the Irvington community about the impact of asthma on residents in the inner city. There were a number of community & civic leaders who participated in this important educational event.
By the spring of 2007, I had been the NJ Political Director for Local 32BJ of the Service Employees International Union for two years when Eric Dillard and I would have the chance to work closely once again, this time during the June 2007 NJ Legislative Primaries. Mr. Dillard was one of the political consultants for NJ Assembly candidate L. Harvey Smith (D-Jersey City). He not only worked to build a grassroots infrastructure for the Smith campaign, but Mr. Dillard also functioned as Smith’s point person for dealing with organized labor and helped secure the endorsement of Local 32BJ for the Assembly candidate.
Finally, Mr. Eric Dillard exemplifies the rare combination of theoretical grounding with practical political experience and grassroots community activism. He can walk the hallways of any state capitol, or canvass hardboiled inner city areas. His understanding of the politics of health and wellness demonstrates, especially in the era of Obamacare, is second to none. I recommend the Wellness Consortium as the go-to-place for health and wellness, and the politics surrounding healthcare in 21st century America.
President & CEO
Omega Stratgies & Research, LLC
My testimonial of Mr. Eric Dillard spans over a period of 49 years. We first met during his athletic days at South Side High School, of Newark, N.J; wherein he lettered in two sports football and basketball, while I was a football manager of our championship teams. We remained in touch throughout his college days and developing challenges of adulthood as our acquaintance grew to become a friendship. I have borne witness to his tenacity, discipline, and forward thinking towards change and a better structured human environment.
Our joined efforts blossomed during the pioneering days of Newark’s community organizing and political activism on behalf of a city whose citizens were absent, ignored and left out of the process of political growth and community enrichment. It was during those historic days that I watched the growth, maturity, and processed culmination of Eric’s organizing tools. His committed and collective work efforts helped produced a nurtured and meaningful change towards a new identity, purpose and direction; that served those who were in the greatest need.
The attributes that I would highlight on behalf of Mr. Dillard are those that make a difference in an indifferent world. These attributes include but are not limited to: discipline, scholarship, tolerance, commitment, organized, centered sensitivity, and a well-rounded love of humanity, fairness and equity.
Any type of organization or corporation would be valued to have Mr. Dillard’s involvement as a member, consultant, or a mentor. I view the idea of a Wellness Consortium as yet another outgrowth of Eric’s talents, experience and learned value system. It is an idea whose time has come and is greatly needed by one who matches the tailored fit to make it the intended success that it will become.
Ihsan A. Rajab
Over the last 40 years I have grown to respect both Eric’s commitment and absolute focus on becoming a change agent. Whether it was as a student organizer with the Black Organization of Students at Rutgers, Newark; a community organizer with the Committee for a Unified Newark or as a consultant for the Concerned Citizens of Irvington, NJ, Eric has always demonstrated the highest levels of integrity and the willingness to work to see that progress is made. Eric serves as a model for all of us who wish to be true Servant Leaders.
Director of the Practitioners Institute
Harlem Children’s Zone