With inspirational women like Cathy Hughes, Oprah and Iman to look up to, Black women entrepreneurs don’t have the mental block of uncharted territory to hold us back. We now can look to these trailblazers as motivators to reach our full potential.
Mikki Taylor: “There are several important moments that pertain to women in black history. First of all, look at the stats on us for the past decade and there are over 900,000 African-American female entrepreneurs and that says a lot about us as a power seed. It says a lot about us owning our lives, and being the change that we want to see. So more than anything that’s the figure, and that’s the stat that stands out in my mind. Certainly Barack Obama is another greatest impact of the last decade for women of color. He is for women. He is about change for women. He is beyond the expression of “breaking the glass seal.” He really is about us mastering our purpose with distinction, and he, with his Administration, are determining to do everything they can to see that we succeed on their watch. So we are looking forward to the next four years to be even more empowering than the first four! So those are my standouts.”
Sure, Oprah is the obvious choice to highlight when talking about Black women business leaders. Lucky for us, we have more strong examples of Black women who have rocked the business world to its core.
Rosalind Brewer has made history for being the first African-American woman to hold a CEO position at one of Wal-Mart’s business units. Then of course, there’s Ursula Burns, who’s meteoric rise from intern to CEO of Xerox, allows many of us to dream bigger than we ever thought possible. It’s one thing to be a boss in business, but it’s quite another extraordinary thing to start your own and thrive! Black women like Iman, Tyra Banks, Janice Bryant Howroyd, Cathy Hughes and more boast bold business ideas that led to success. Black women, believe you can do anything and you can!
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1. Deborah Hill
"I wish for a more perfect union." Deborah Hill, age undisclosed
2. Dash Harris
"I wish for America to have never made up the concept of race." Dash Harris, 26
3. Kalieya H
"I wish for the elimination of guns and bullets." Kalieya H., 22
4. Amafra K
"I wish for America to be more international." Amafra K., 30
5. Sadiyya A
"I wish us all peace and respect for each other." Sadiyya A., 58
6. Desiree H
"I wish for free education." Desiree H., 26
7. Sierra K
"I wish for free health care for everyone." Sierra K., 23
8. Tanesha Barnes
"I wish for cultural revolution." Tanesha Barnes, age undisclosed
9. Alana H
"I wish for peace." Alana H., 32
10. Muriel R.
"I wish for things to be better. A lot of people don't have a job right now. So I wish for things to be like they used to be." Muriel R., 39
11. Kaylan C
"I wish for a better education system." Kaylan C., 29
12. Heather D.
"I wish for economic stability." Heather D., 29
13. Monique G
"I wish for free health care!" Monique G., 31
14. Roxanne J.
"My wish is that we find a way to find peace with our Muslim brothers and sisters, and as part of global peace, that the Israeli/Palestinian conflict is resolved with each country having sovereign land." Roxanne J., 47
15. Jason-Louise G.
"I wish for an improved political system with more than two parties." Jason-Louise G., 27
16. Chanel C
"I wish for there to be no more hungry people." Chanel C., 26
17. Tracy Hopkins
"I wish that we stop all the violence and stop the mentality of resolving conflict through killing and violence. I wish that we see each other as human beings and have more value for life." Tracy Hopkins, 42
18. Terry Joyner
"I wish for peace, women's rights and diversity." Terry Joyner, 40s
19. Stella A.
"I wish for everyone to love each other." Stella A., 29
20. Mia D.
"I wish that we teach black boys and girls their true history so they can learn to love themselves." Mia D., 24
21. Jacqui Leveine
"My one wish is for us to find a cure for HIV."
22. Courtney M
"I wish for a better economy." Courtney M., 25
23. Ashley G
"I wish for peace." Ashley G., 22
24. Glorya H
"I wish for equality." Glorya H.
25. Michelle Dalmida
"I wish for less animosity and more peace in this country. Just more love and peace." Michelle Dalmida, 19
26. Natasha W.
"I wish us rich." Natasha W., 34
27. Cwen Charlee
"I wish for a America a plus-sized boutique." Cwen Charlee, 33
28. Dorothy Wooten
"I wish that we could stop and find a cure for HIV; empower women and children to protect themselves by using condoms; and stop violence around women being abused." Dorothy Wooten of Iris House, 72
29. Daranice Miguel
"I would like to see the justice system change regarding blacks. Blacks get a lot of time for doing drugs, while they give whites less time for rape. I have sons in jail for 11 years. We get persecuted too hard. I would like to see more jobs available to blacks so the youth don't have to sell drugs. It's like a Catch-22. And they can't vote once they get a felony." Daranice M., 54
30. Bernadette Hamilton
"My wish is that black people really come together and we understand our potential. Somehow with technology, we have lost our way. When something happens in our neighborhood, no one is organizing. We have to know our worth, after all, where does the richest diamond come from?" Bernadette Hamilton, 47
31. Stella Barker
"I wish for the economy to improve and for health care for all." Stella Barker, 33
32. Ginear Campbell
"I wish for an America with a great economy, an America where most others would come to Jesus and have a true appreciation and understanding for what he's done." Ginear Campbell, 31
33. Qubilah Mui
"I wish for Americans to have free health care." Qubilah Mui, 32
34. Tiffany Tate
"I wish for better opportunities for education in urban areas." Tiffany Tate, age undisclosed
35. Michelle Hatchette
"I wish for food and education equity and for justice."
36. Roselind Francis
"I want for America to have healthy food choices for our children. No GMO [genetically modified organisms] in our food." Roselind Francis, 61
37. Nia I'man Smith
"I want for America to stop cutting funding to arts institutions and the arts in schools." Nia I'man Smith, 25
38. Kai Storm
"I wish for more jobs and economic stability." Kai Storm, 40
39. Valencia Good
"I wish for black people to organize and fight police brutality and for parents to focus on what's going on with their kids." Valencia Good, 38
40. Stephanie Ngoziukpere
"I wish for a community amongst black people with one language to connect us." Stephanie Ngoziukpere, 21
41. Melissa Powell
"I wish for more prosperity and more peace for all." Melissa Powell, 30
42. Marissa Mounds
"I wish for the return of strong families." Marissa Mounds, 30
43. Charlotte Newman
"I wish that Americans again feel the sense of unbridled optimism that compelled America to rally around President Kennedy in pursuit of space exploration. And I hope that this renewed optimism is supported by a collective commitment to improving public education and eliminating violence in America's cities." Charlotte Newman, 30
44. Brittani Rettig
"I wish people would care for each other as they would care for themselves." Brittani Rettig
45. Teju Adisa-Farrar
"I wish for increased awareness of social and political issues." Teju Adisa-Farrar, 21
46. Shola Adisa-Farrar
"I wish for increased appreciation for other cultures and lifestyle choices." Shola Adisa-Farrar, 27
47. Torlisa Jeffrey
"I wish for educational opportunities for all, regardless of citizenship or class status." Torlissa Jeffrey, 28
48. Anna Johnson
"I wish Obama for President!!!" Anna Johnson, 32
49. Marrena Edmond
"I wish that each person the opportunity to fulfill his or her potential!" Marrena Edmond, 32
50. Jessica Maina
"I wish for acceptance and diversity." Jessica Maina, 23