One of the most inspiring trends we’ve seen recently is increased support, funding, and interest for Black entrepreneurs. Black Lives Matter and social justice movements are supporting Black-owned businesses, and many of these businesses in turn are advocating for good in the world.
We think that’s worth celebrating, so here’s our pick of great Black entrepreneurs who are making a difference.
Kelly Burton—Helping Foundations and Nonprofits to Create Community Change
Kelly Burton is involved with an impressive number of community-focused organizations. She’s a co-convener for the Black Innovation Alliance, the CEO at Founders of Color, and a principal at Nexus Research Group.
Co-Convener at Black Innovation Alliance
“The Black Innovation Alliance is a national coalition of 40+ organizations dedicated to building the sort of ecosystem truly capable of helping Black innovators to thrive. We claim the right for Black people to profit fully from our contributions to this age of innovation.” —LinkedIn
- Black Innovation Alliance website
- Black Innovation Alliance Twitter
- Black Innovation Alliance LinkedIn
CEO at Founders of Color
“Founders of Color (FOC) is an online platform connecting minority entrepreneurs with high-growth potential to the information, relationships, and opportunities they need to scale quickly, while simultaneously connecting those looking to access minority founders with the data, information, and support they need to navigate the minority entrepreneur landscape.” —LinkedIn
Principal at Nexus Research Group
“Nexus Research Group (NRG) is a woman and minority-owned impact consulting firm, specializing in helping our clients carry out meaningful social change in low-wealth communities and communities of color.” —LinkedIn
Jessica O. Matthews—Driving Sustainable and Renewable Energy and Infrastructure
Jessica Matthews leads Uncharted Power, a sustainable infrastructure business. The Uncharted system integrates technology into paver slabs that can be placed on the ground and powered by kinetic energy, like footsteps. The technology in the paver slabs then provides connectivity and access to data for everyone.
“Uncharted Power is a sustainable infrastructure company. Uncharted Power is tackling this trillion-dollar problem with the most underutilized asset a community has—the ground. The Uncharted System converts the ground beneath our feet into an industrial IoT platform that enables the integrated deployment and management of critical infrastructure—from power grids and broadband to sidewalks and water pipes.” —LinkedIn
Adelanwa Adesanya—Assisting Cardiac Care Patients with Recovery
Adelanwa Adesanya runs Moving Analytics, a company dedicated to helping heart attack patients recover at home. This includes cardiac rehabilitation that’s tailored to each patient’s unique needs.
“We provide intuitive, turnkey, home-based post-acute care management solutions for cardiopulmonary disease that improves patient outcomes, reduces readmissions, and empowers the effective and efficient delivery of quality care to patients based on 30+ years of research in remote disease management from Stanford University.” —LinkedIn
Kimberly Bryant—Educating the Black, Female Developers of Tomorrow
Kimberly Bryant runs Black Girls CODE, a successful, San Francisco-based nonprofit that teaches girls between the ages of 6 and 17 how to become deeply involved in the technologies of tomorrow.
“Black Girls CODE is a global movement. Founded in 2011, the San Francisco-based nonprofit introduces young girls of color, ages 6-17, to computer programming, electrical engineering, mobile app development, robotics, and other STEM fields. In 2012 the nonprofit launched in 10 cities nationwide and expanded to South Africa. Voted as “2012 Most Innovative Nonprofit” by Bank of the West, the nonprofit continues to expand and empower hundreds of girls worldwide.” LinkedIn
Christopher Gray—Helping Students Access Grants to Drive Educational Achievement
Christopher Gray is the co-founder at Scholly, a mobile app designed to link students to scholarship funds. Scholly has already helped students to access over $100 million of funding.
“Started by a student who won $1.3 million in scholarships, Scholly is an app that gives students a fast and simple way to find scholarships for college. The app turns the months of looking for money for college into minutes. The company was featured on Shark Tank, landing a deal with Daymond John and Lori Greiner.” —LinkedIn
Jasmine Crowe—Reducing the Environmental Impact of Food Waste and Ensuring People Eat
Jasmine Crowe founded Goodr, a company that aims to significantly reduce unnecessary food waste and redirect products to food banks and other local nonprofits to combat hunger.
“At Goodr, we believe that hunger isn’t a scarcity issue. It’s a logistics issue. Even with many social programs that aim to end hunger, the current food supply chain ecosystem in the United States has failed to solve this problem which has grown into a national epidemic. Every year in the United States, we waste over 72 billion pounds of edible food, yet 42 million people are suﬀering from food insecurity.” —Goodr
We hope that you’re as excited by these awesome Black entrepreneurs as we are. Take a look at what they’re doing, and let it inspire you to make a positive change in the world. We’ll be with you, every step of the way.
Community Reinvestment Fund, USA stands in solidarity with all those fighting for social justice, equity, and transformational change.