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Branch #1069

San Pedro/Wilmington and the Palos Verdes Peninsula

“…(We) mark this (historic) moment as we celebrate Black history month, and the NAACP is celebrating its 114th anniversary,” said Mayor Karen Bass.

- Fullerton Observer, February 14, 2023

Joe R. Gatlin

Founder and Current Vice President NAACP Branch #1069 San Pedro/Wilmington and the Palos Verdes Peninsula

A Champion of Change & A Legacy of Community Empowerment

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Meet Joe Gatlin

Champion for Port  Longshoremen
Maritime Ambassador
Youth Advocate
Community Empowerment
Women on the Waterfront

Joe R. Gatlin is a proud San Pedro resident and California native. He has resided in the San Pedro area and has been an efficacious community leader, activist, and humanitarian for over sixty years.

Recently, on December 5, 2023, Joe Gatlin was nominated, unanimously approved by the Los Angeles City Council, and appointed by Mayor Karen Bass to the Harbor Area Planning Commission to serve the people of Los Angeles. Joe Gatlin is also the founder, and current vice-president of the NAACP Branch #1069 San Pedro/Wilmington and the Palos Verdes Peninsula.

He serves on the following boards: Behavioral Health Services, LA Harbor Community College, YWCA Harbor Area, Los Angeles Maritime Institute, Champion in Service, LAPD Advisory Board Harbor Division, and the Port of Los Angeles High School. He previously served on the Toberman Board, and Central San Pedro Neighborhood Council.

Joe Gatlin founded the Juneteenth 400 non-profit which partnered and collaborated with the Port of Los Angeles, NAACP Branch #1069, SA Recycling, Economic and Workforce Development Department, Harbor Gateway WorkSource Center, Women on the Waterfront, Pacific Maritime Association, Water Replenishment District, 99cent Only Stores, ICHOR Strategies, Councilman Tim McOster, Port of Long Beach, ILWU Locals 13,63, and 94 as well as the City of Los Angeles to celebrate the emancipation of slavery in American and Freedom. His foundation started hosting a Juneteenth celebration in 2008 and has been doing so for over thirty years.

Joe Gatlin is very proactive and when he sees a need he focuses on meeting it. He saw a need and assisted in establishing the very first San Pedro section of the National Council of Negro Women in 2006. He has assisted numerous organizations and charities with their fundraising efforts such as the YWCA, Barton Hill Neighborhood Organization, and the San Pedro Committee.

He is an active member of the Chamber of Commerce Waterfront Planning Committee and has served on the steering committee of the Port Citizen Advisory Committee (PCAC) and PCAC board for over five years. He was instrumental in founding the COPE, an emergency preparedness committee which was a high priority issue for San Pedro residents at the time. He played a key role in establishing an emergency food program with the ILWU Hands Open Wide Program and the Toberman food pantry to distribute food for casual longshoreman and local
harbor area residents. From 2001 -2006, he was a member, vice-president and president of the Central Neighborhood Council in San Pedro.

In prior years, 1965 to June 1976, he served in the United States Army’s’ Nike Hercules Missile Battalion in the Los Angeles Harbor Area. While serving, he became a Commissioned Officer in 1968. He was the launching area supervisor overseeing the Fourth Missile Battalion Battery D located in Palos Verdes California. He also served as Jane Goodall’s West Coast Representative for the Goodall Institute from 1991 to 1996. Joe Gatlin represented the Goodall Roots and Shoots Program in Kuwait from 1992-1996. While in Kuwait, he began working with the Royal Family of Kuwait to recover, locate and remove landmines and securing contracts to secure water desalination plants to bring fresh water to the cities and farmlands in Kuwait. He was even  awarded the title of “Kentucky Colonel” by the Governor Paul E. Patton of Kentucky for his humanitarian work in the state. Known as Coach, Joe Gatlin coached the girls’ basketball team at San Pedro High School for one year and Coached the girls’ basketball team at Miraleste High School in Palos Verdes for nine years.

He is a concerned citizen a positive motivating force who is committed to keeping San Pedro united, safe, and productive.

Joe Gatlin creates New Program to help bring
diversity to Port of Los Angeles  

CNBC | February 22, 2022
Juneteenth Gives Rise to Awareness in Los Angeles Harbor

Our Programs

We are committed to a world without racism where Black people enjoy equitable opportunities in thriving communities.

Juneteenth 400
2024 Celebration!

Juneteenth 400 is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization established by San Pedro resident and community activist Joe Gatlin in 2021. Gatlin hosted an annual Juneteenth Celebration at San Pedro's Peck Park from 2000 to 2018, which, over the years, helped to attract thousands of Angelenos to the Los Angeles Harbor area. The “400” signifies 400 years after the first slave ship arrived in the English colony of Virginia in 1619, as documented by The New York Times.

LA Maritime Institute
TopSail Youth Program

The Los Angeles Maritime Institute (LAMI) serves to empower youth to discover their greater potential through extraordinary at-sea experiences aboard educational sailing vessels built to train and equip young people with 21st century leadership skills, and inspire maritime and STEM career paths.

Justice for Murdered Children

We are a group of volunteer parents, whose children have been murdered. Our Goal is to help in the fight to reduce hunger and violence in Black and Brown communities throughout Los Angeles County. Due to the Coronavirus we have had an enormous increase in hunger and violence, with a decrease in donations. We are adamant about providing safe streets, communities and schools. Children can no longer live in fear of being murdered on the streets of the United States of America.


Stay Connected to the NAACP!

(310) 766-5399

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