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Black History: Special Delivery!!


Economic Empowerment

Madame CJ Walker Quote

Black History:  Special Delivery!!


Madame CJ Walker, was a pioneering entrepreneur developing hair care products that catered to black women. She was orphaned at the age of 7, widowed with a young child by age 18, and could barely read or write……YET she let none of this stop her.  In achieving success, she also wanted to empower other black women to be successful by creating employment opportunities for them. She shared this quote at a National Negro Business League Convention:

“I am not merely satisfied in making money for myself.  For I am endeavoring to provide employment for hundreds of the women of my race”

-Madame CJ Walker


Operation Breadbasket: Economic Empowerment Program Of The Southern Christian Leadership Conference

Black History: Special Delivery!!


Operation Breadbasket was launched in 1962 by the Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC) in Atlanta, GA. Dr. Martin Luther King, jr., stated, “The fundamental premise of Breadbasket is a simple one. Negroes need not patronize a business which denies them jobs, or advancement or plain courtesy…..Many retail businesses and consumer goods industries deplete the ghetto by selling to Negroes without returning to the community any profits through fair hiring practices”. Operation Breadbasket’s first leader was Fred Bennette. Continue reading “Operation Breadbasket: Economic Empowerment Program Of The Southern Christian Leadership Conference”

National Negro Business League: A Legacy of Strategic Economic Empowerment

Black History: Special Delivery!!


 The National Negro Business League (NNBL) was founded by Booker T. Washington in Boston, MA in 1900. It was organized 12 years prior to the US Chamber of Commerce. NNBL’s sought to promote “commercial, agricultural, educational, and industrial advancement … and the commercial and financial development of the Negro.”  Hundreds of chapters were developed across the US. The organization relocated to Washington, D.C. in 1996 and was renamed the National Business League (NBL). Organizations affiliated with NBL included: National Negro Bankers Association, the National Negro Press Association, the National Association of Negro Funeral Directors, the National Negro Bar Association, the National Association of Negro Insurance Men, the National Negro Retail Merchants’ Association, the National Association of Negro Real Estate Dealers, and the National Negro Finance Corporation.

Booker T. Washington believer that African-American entrepreneurship was critical to addressing racial discrimination and disparities.  Members included various types of business owners (farmers, doctors, lawyers, craftsmen, small business and other professionals (both men and women). NBL created directories for all major cities in the US. NBL helped to foster a vibrant business community. NBL also developed strategic relationships with white business owners and companies. Booker T. Washington, himself, maintained strong relationships with many prominent white business owners such as Andrew Carnegie and Julius Rosenwald (President of Sears and Roebuck). NBL is still active today with offices in Atlanta and Washington DC.

Check out the NBL website at:

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