A strong entrepreneurial spirit among Black Americans has spurred the creation of untold numbers of Blackowned businesses going back centuries and, at certain times in history, has resulted in thriving communities
of enterprise such as the “Black Wall Street” of Tulsa, Oklahoma, and the bustling Shaw neighborhood of Washington, D.C. However, today, Black-owned businesses on the whole lag behind the average U.S. firm
in terms of size and revenue. Ownership rates trail those of nonminority groups, and the failure rate is high. While these facts have been well documented, this particular initiative aims to reframe and restart
the conversation associated with support for Black businesses by highlighting the resilient spirit of these aspiring entrepreneurs, painting a vivid picture of the rich diversity of Black-owned businesses, modeling
the impact of unleashing their potential economic power, and bringing a new understanding to the unique barriers that these businesses experience.