Black Chamber: Right on time, right on message
Now is the time to advance a national black
By Ron Busby, Sr.
President, U.S. Black Chamber, Inc.
black businessmen Samuel Cornish and John Russwurm coined
a now-familiar phrase in the inaugural issue of Freedom’s
Journal, America’s first Black-owned newspaper.
The men eloquently stated, “We wish to plead our
own cause. Too long have others spoken for us.”
U.S. Black Chamber was founded on this principle and believes
that this is the perfect moment in history to define, advocate
for and execute an aggressive national Black business
– as never before –black-owned businesses are
poised to make significant entrepreneurial and economic gains.
We have a U.S. President who’s working to stimulate
the economy through small business growth, African Americans
in key regulatory positions that impact small business development,
White House officials leading an ambitious small business
agenda, and federal legislation aimed at expanding opportunities
for minority-owned businesses.
factors create an optimal environment for black business growth.
However, if we don’t move expeditiously to advocate
for ourselves, pool our resources, and leverage our influence,
we will fail to achieve the level of economic success we rightfully
Too long we have suffered from the absence of a strong, competent
and influential advocate to protect our interests. Our voice
has either not been recognized, or our concerns have been
improperly represented. Hence, now is the time to work together
and advocate for our economic and entrepreneurial interests.
arrived in Washington, DC, I was taken aback at the fact that
there is an advocacy group, lobbyist, or trade association
for just about every conceivable cause I could imagine. From
deep-pocket bank lobbyists to child advocates to sugar beet
growers, everyone has some one representing their interests
on Capitol Hill. That is, everyone except the African American
to say, the presence of the U.S. Black Chamber (USBC) has
sparked a firestorm of excitement in Washington. DC insiders
who were looking for the right “voice” with which
to ally themselves have embraced us. In less than a year,
the U.S. Black Chamber has earned the respect, recognition
and cooperation of White House officials, legislators, regulators
and some of Washington most influential movers and shakers.
simply, we are proving to be the right organization, with
the right agenda, at the right time. Consequently, the time
is now for you to become engaged and join our national effort
to fight for black business advancement.
USBC has a clear and well-defined agenda based on our Five
Pillars of Service: Advocacy, Access to Capital, Chamber
Development, Entrepreneurial Training, and Contract Opportunities.
We aim to spur black business growth by advocating for sound
small business legislation, sparking the growth and development
of black chambers, and helping entrepreneurs enhance their
business management skills. Already, we are collaborating
with black chamber executives on how to best serve local black
business communities. And, we have established valuable partnerships
with higher learning institutions, nonprofit organizations,
and government agencies to provide valuable resources to USBC
we have tapped the wisdom and expertise of some of the nation’s
most influential black chamber executives who make up the
USBC board of directors and have established USBC regional
offices: Aubry Stone, USBC board chair and president of the
California Black Chamber of Commerce; Clay Hammond, vice chair,
USBC board and president of the Delmarva Black Chamber of
Commerce; Aimee Griffin, USBC general counsel and founder
of the New England Black Chamber of Commerce; Brandon Trainer,
USBC comptroller and founder/president of the Raleigh Black
Chamber of Commerce; Bill Diggs, USBC director of the Southwest
Region and CEO of the Miami Dade Chamber of Commerce; Charles
O’Neal, USBC director for the Southern Region and president
of the Dallas Black Chamber of Commerce; Robin Lisa Douglas,
USBC director for the Northeastern Region and president/founder
of the African American Chamber of Commerce of Westchester
and Rockland Counties; Kerwin Brown, USBC director for the
Western Region and vice chair of the Greater Phoenix Black
Chamber of Commerce; Kathy Taylor, USBC director of the Mid-Atlantic
Region and president of the Lehigh Valley Black Chamber of
Commerce; and Randon Pender, president of the Winston Salem
Black Chamber of Commerce.
is now to join America’s fastest growing advocacy group
for Black business. Make it your business to learn about our
mission, our advocacy work, and how the USBC can help you
grow your business and your chamber.
and consider what a USBC membership can do for you.