Minneapolis kicks off Black Business Week

The city of Minneapolis’ 2nd Annual Black Business Week got off to a festive start Monday evening as a respected think tank consisting of community agencies, minority business owners, and city officials, convened at Sabathani Community Center to discuss empowering Black businesses, access to capital, and the need for a unified effort by all entities with a stake in growing Black-owned business.

Mayor Jacob Frey and City Council President Andrea Jenkins kicked off the city’s Black Business Week, which takes place ahead of National Black Business Month in August. 

The powerful group of speakers and panelists also included Tracey Williams-Dillard, CEO and publisher of the Minnesota Spokesman-Recorder; Yusra Mohamud, Lake Street Council business advisor; Erik Hansen, city of Minneapolis, CPED, director of economic policy; Kareem Murphy, Hennepin County Government Relations; Commissioner Steve Grove (DEED), Scott Redd, CEO of Sabathani Community Center; Tawana Black, executive director of Center for Economic Inclusion; Tabitha Montgomery, executive director of Powderhorn Park Neighborhood Association, 38th Street United Leadership; and Renay Dossman, president of NDC and founding member of AALF’s Black Business Support Collective.

The informative event was moderated by PJ Hill, a financial advisor and real estate developer.

Williams-Dillard, the owner of the oldest Blackness business in the state, made a passionate call for 365 days of Black business patronage by saying this is not something we should do, but something we must do if Black businesses are to survive.

“After you leave here today,” she encouraged, “we have to be deliberate about doing business with Black-owned businesses.”

Black Business Week takes place July 25–31 with events in various locations throughout the city.

Photo by Jennifer Jackman (l-r) Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey, Council President Andrea Jenkins, and Spokesman-Recorder CEO/Publisher Tracey Williams-Dillard, shortly before the start of the 2nd Annual Black Business Week at Sabathani Community Center on July 25.

Find upcoming events below. Read the full story about Black Business Week in next week’s print edition and online.

Black Business Week roundtable discussion – July 26; 6-7:30 pm
Location: NEON, 1007 West Broadway Ave. N., Minneapolis, MN 55411
 
Business Support Funding for Creatives Grant Application Clinic – July 26; 2- 4 pm

Location: Rare Productions, 3010 E. Lake St., Minneapolis, Minnesota 55408

Business panel: How to expand beyond East African customers –July 27; 12-1:30 pm
Location: Nomadic Oasis, 2525 East Franklin Ave., Minneapolis MN 55406

Opportunity and Access – Doing Business with the City of Minneapolis – July 27; 2-5 pm
Location: Minneapolis Urban League, 2100 Plymouth Ave. N., Minneapolis MN, 55411
 
Black businesses networking reception – July 28; 5-7 pm

Location: Breakfast Bar, 319 1st. Ave N., Minneapolis, MN 55401

T.O.U.C.H. Outreach & Corcoran Neighborhood Present: Stop the Violence South Side Community Cookout – July 28; 1-6 pm 
Location: 730 E. 22nd St., Minneapolis, MN 55404  (corner of Franklin and Chicago avenues)

The Business of Sports – July 28; 6-7:15 pm via Zoom

West Broadway Business and Area Coalition presents: FLOW Northside Arts Crawl, July 28-30
Location: West Broadway corridor and satellite locations off Broadway in North Minneapolis
 
Let’s Get Informed: East African Community Resource Fair – July 29; 5-8 pm

Location: Brian Coyle Community Center, 420 15th Ave. S., Minneapolis, MN 55454

Dream Team Beauty Presents: A Lesson for Gen Z – July 30; 11 am-4 pm
Location: 2010 Fremont Ave. N., Minneapolis, MN 55411 (attached to a church, upstairs)

Fabulously Fit for Future Generations – July 30; 11 am-4 pm
Location: 1106 West Broadway Ave. N., Minneapolis, MN 55411

For more info here: bit.ly/MPLSBlackBusinessWeek2022

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