(Born 1957). The computer scientist/ engineer worked for IBM, where he led the team that designed the ISA bus—the hardware interface that allows multiple devices like printers, modems, and keyboards to be plugged into a computer. This innovation helped pave the way for the personal computer’s use in office and business settings.
The Negro has been inflicted with 244 years of slavery and 100 years of segregation. And so with the legacy of these two unjust systems facing him, it is only natural that he is way behind. And he has been out of the mainstream of American life, he has been on the periphery of American life for all of these years. And it would really be a miracle, that history hasn’t seen for someone to start exactly 344 years behind in a race and get ahead or catch up—unless something special is done. We’ve had special treatment in the negative sense for 344 years. Now we’ve got to get special treatment in the positive sense, in order to catch up and improve these lagging standards.
— Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., 1964 —
No-Bid Single Source Contract will be administered by BBEC with primary management by locally based Black-owned and controlled entities that have established track records of Black business empowerment in Black communities across America. BBEC will receive a 3% administrative fee annually for a 20 year period to: 1) Identify needed services and products at the City, State and Federal levels, 2) Match needed services and products with qualified service providers and vendors, 3) Aggregate, as necessary, service providers and vendors to guarantee the capacity to fulfill contracts/orders, and 4) Provide contract administration and reporting.
Back Office Technical Assistance and Support: Designate $500M per year
for a 20 year period for Federal grants to fund experienced BBEC certified community-based service providers with deep ties to the Black community to provide ongoing, technical assistance that includes brand marketing, finance, location development, and strategic planning at every stage of the business life cycle (creation, growth, stabilization, maturity), as well as, comprehensive back office support services including: financial management, information technology, human resources and compliance for BBE certified businesses.
Capital Access: BBEC requests that the Federal government deposit $500M per year for a 20 year period with BBEC certified Black owned financial institutions charged with the mission of providing low interest startup capital, working capital and lines of credit to Black entrepreneurs based on past harm. ‘Past harm’ – rooted in conscious and/ or unconscious anti-Black bias – has been inflicted by formal, institutionalized impediments, intentional discouragement, exclusionary policies and denial of funding.
BBE Certification and Registry: BBEC wants to be clear, none of the terms “MWBE”, “Minority”, “Diversity”, “Small Business”, “Rural” = “Black.” We demand the elimination of MWBE certification for Black entrepreneurs who are descendants of American chattel slavery. BBEC requests an initial $10M Federal grant to develop the criterion for a national Black Business Empowerment (BBE) Certification program and an additional $1M annually to engage experienced BBEC certified community-based service providers to develop and maintain a registry and document outcomes for a 10 year period.
BBE Growth/ Mentorship/ Workforce Development: BBEC seeks to address the high rates of incarceration and underemployment in the Black community. Designate $500M per year for a 20 year period for Federal grants to fund experienced BBEC certified community partners across America. BBEC certified partners will develop and implement programs designed to accelerate the rate of business creation and employment growth in the Black community with a focus on the most economically disadvantaged and vulnerable members of our community. All programs will combat economic racism by providing entrepreneurial and skills training that will lead to ongoing wealth generation derived from sustainable economic opportunities for Black businesses and employees, thereby strengthening the Black community’s business pipeline.
For more information, visit the Black Business Empowerment Commission