DeRay Mckesson, community organizer, activist, and interim director of human capital for the Baltimore city schools had actually managed to fall out of the public eye for a bit while staging an unsuccessful run to be Baltimore’s next mayor, but he made national headlines again after he was arrested at a protest in Baton Rouge, jailed, and served grainy orange juice by The Man.

Now Mckesson is making news again, spurred by the release of a batch of 20,000 DNC emails by WikiLeaks.

On Friday evening, Mckesson was busy contesting suggestions that he had served as a surrogate for the Democrat Party or either of its two major presidential candidates.

Others who have read the leaked email … make that emails … naming Mckesson really didn’t need a denial that he’d served as a surrogate. He was checked out and found to have tweeted his assumption that the man who fatally shot two reporters in Virginia during an on-camera interview last August was white, a mistake which resulted in some awkward backpedaling. There’s no indication that that alone sank any relationship, but it certainly didn’t help his brand and was featured in a summary of Mckesson’s online presence.

As far as his physical presence, Mckesson might not have served as an official surrogate of the DNC, but he certainly has made a few visits to the White House, including three in 2011 — three years before the #BlackLivesMatter even materialized on social media. Visits picked up again in 2015, as Mckesson tweeted about his meeting with Valerie Jarrett to review sentencing reform and a scheduled visit with President Obama and generations of civil rights leaders in February 2016 to discuss building trust between police and neighborhoods.

Now, of course, the focus has turned to Mckesson’s own effort to rebuild trust.

We’ll see about that, once Mckesson’s done vetting the DNC.


Nothing to see here? NBC News’ Chuck Todd responds after being named in #DNCLeak email