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Being Black Gives Donald Pollitt Purpose and Pride

  • Jackie Randazzo

As a Public Information Officer for the San Francisco Public Utilities Commission, Donald Pollitt writes stories about the agency’s electricity offerings and benefits of public power. But Pollitt's story is worth writing and celebrating, too—especially during February’s Black History Month.

Donald Pollitt at the Golden Gate Bridge.

A New Jersey native, Pollitt graduated from Syracuse University as a Communications professional and accomplished track and field athlete. When he’s not currently writing snappy social media content for the agency’s Our City Our Power campaign or discussing a discount program with a CleanPowerSF customer at a community event, he’s training to possibly compete in the 2024 Paris Summer Olympics after being inspired to start training again in 2022. No big deal.

But it’s his identity as a Black man that truly brings Pollitt purpose, joy, and pride. “Knowing I come from a legacy of greatness, being Black makes me feel strong,” he said. He also commends the entire Black community for their resiliency. “We face so much adversity, yet we still rise.”

For Pollitt, Black History Month is a time for both reflection and celebration. “It’s a month to acknowledge how far I’ve come in reducing the shame around my identity, a season to honor my ancestors and their hidden contributions, and a time to contemplate on the work that still needs to be done.” He also notes that Black history cannot be limited to one month. “Without Black history, there would be no history."

Pollitt wants to ensure Black stories continue at the SFPUC and other utilities. His advice for new Black professionals interested in the sector: “Utilities serve everyone so whatever you decide to excel in will be valuable to the utility and the community it serves.” Donald Pollitt is proof of that.