BLACK Lives Matter co-founder Patrisse Cullors is stepping down from the organization, effective Friday.
Cullors' resignation comes after what she called a smear campaign from a far-right group, though she insists her stepping down was planned before a scandal calling her personal wealth into question broke earlier this year.
"I've created the infrastructure and the support, and the necessary bones and foundation, so that I can leave," Cullors told The Associated Press.
"It feels like the time is right."
Cullors will now focus on other projects, including the upcoming release of her second book and a new TV development deal with Warner Bros.
Her resignation comes after reports about several pricey properties she owns across the US began circulating and critics began questioning where she got the money to buy them.
The self-proclaimed "Marxist" BLM leader came under fire after it was reported that she spent $1.4million on a property in a predominantly white Los Angeles neighborhood, Topanga Canyon.
When people began questioning how Cullors got the funds to buy the new pad, BLM released a statement to quiet rumors, noting she served in a "volunteer capacity and does not receive a salary or benefits."
"Patrisse has received a total of $120,000 since the organization’s inception in 2013, for duties such as serving as spokesperson and engaging in political education work. Patrisse did not receive any compensation after 2019."
"Those were right-wing attacks that tried to discredit my character, and I don’t operate off of what the right thinks about me," Cullors said of the scandal.
The BLM movement was created nearly eight years ago to address injustices against black Americans.
With Cullors departing, the organization will bring in two new interim senior executives to help steer it in the immediate future.
Monifa Bandele, a longtime BLM organizer and founder of the Malcolm X Grassroots Movement in New York City, and Makani Themba, an early backer of the BLM movement and chief strategist at Higher Ground Change Strategies in Jackson, Mississippi, will join the ranks.
"I think both of them come with not only a wealth of movement experience, but also a wealth of executive experience," Cullors said.
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