Posts made in April 2020

Media Giant – Earl Graves, Sr. Passes On

Content Curated By by Derek T. Dingle

Black Enterprise founder Earl Graves Sr. passed away at age 85, after a long battle with Alzheimer’s. Mr. Graves, the quintessential entrepreneur who created a vehicle of information and advocacy that has inspired four generations of African Americans to build wealth through entrepreneurship, career advancement, and money management, leaves an enormous legacy. According to his son, Black Enterprise CEO Earl “Butch” Graves Jr., he passed away quietly at 9:22 p.m. on April 6.
Graves was widely considered to be the ultimate champion of black business, launching Black Enterprise in 1970 to not only chronicle the rise of African American entrepreneurs but also provide the tools for African Americans to succeed in the business mainstream and “achieve their measure of the American dream.” In his award-winning, now classic, business bestseller, How To Succeed In Business Without Being White, Graves stated his life-defining purpose for founding Black Enterprise in simple, direct terms: “The time was ripe for a magazine devoted to economic development in the African American community. The publication was committed to the task of educating, inspiring and uplifting its readers. My goal was to show them how to thrive professionally, economically and as proactive, empowered citizens.”

Driven by that mission, Graves became a trailblazing entrepreneur in his own right, building Black Enterprise from a single-magazine publishing company 50 years ago, to a diversified multimedia business spreading the message of financial empowerment to more than 6 million African Americans through print, digital, broadcast and live-event platforms. As such, Black Enterprise was one of two companies that would appear on the BE 100s—the publication’s annual rankings of the nation’s largest black-owned businesses—each of its 47 years. At one point, Graves would operate two companies on the list, including Pepsi-Cola of Washington, DC, one of the nation’s largest soft-drink distributors owned by African Americans.

Graves’ influence and reach also extended into the mainstream of corporate America. One of the few African Americans to serve on the boards of major corporations such as American Airlines, Daimler Chrysler, Rohm & Hass and Federated Department Stores (Macy’s), he was a staunch advocate for African American inclusion in the C-Suite and corporate governance. Graves was also a tireless champion of major corporations doing business with black-owned companies. Beyond business, Graves was a force in politics, civil rights, and philanthropy. In fact, he played a pivotal role in galvanizing support for the election of the first African American president of the United States, Barack Obama, through his endorsement in Black Enterprise and service as surrogate campaigning on his behalf.

Before that, Graves also championed the historic presidential bids of Rev. Jesse Jackson. Moreover, his fight for racial justice and economic parity earned him the NAACP Spingarn Medal, the organization’s highest honor, in 1999. Graves was also known for his dedication to family, and especially to his wife Barbara Kydd Graves, who passed away in 2012. Together, they raised three sons, Earl Jr., Johnny and Michael, and were blessed with eight grandchildren.

Born in 1935, Graves reaches the pinnacle of power from humble beginnings in the Bedford Stuyvesant section of Brooklyn, New York. After graduating from a Morgan State University with a B.A. in economics, he served two years as an officer in the Army and held jobs in law enforcement and real estate. In 1965, he joined the staff of U.S. Senator Robert F. Kennedy as his administrative assistant. When Kennedy was assassinated in 1968, he decided to start a publication that would provide blacks with the pathway to go into entrepreneurship.

He wrote: “Black Enterprise was just a modest magazine when I founded it—just me, a few brave advertisers like Pepsi, ExxonMobil, and General Motors; and a small but spirited staff. And one other person who did just about everything there is to do to put out a magazine—my wife, Barbara.” The young publisher managed to gain a $250,000 loan from Chase Manhattan Bank and proved so masterful at selling and running the magazine that it became profitable in 10 months — enabling Graves to repay the loan to the major financial institution.

With his wife Barbara at his side, he grew the magazine into one of the nation’s most successful and respected. The world first discovered such business luminaries as Oprah Winfrey, former American Express CEO Kenneth Chenault, billionaire dealmaker Bob Johnson, and the late financier Reginald F. Lewis on the pages of Black Enterprise. In fact, Robert Smith, the billionaire CEO of Vista Equity Partners, like so many successful black entrepreneurs and corporate leaders, admitted that he switched careers to high finance after reading Black Enterprise.
“The truth of the matter is that we are humbled by the achievements of the talented people we report on,” Graves wrote. “We are in awe, still, by the courage, it takes to put oneself on the line in an unmerciful marketplace.” Hundreds of thousands express awe and gratitude for the role he played an example of excellence and achievement he set for generations to come. –

20 Seconds or More

Hip Hop Public Health is excited to announce the launch of 20 Seconds or More to empower children and families with information, tools and resources to mitigate the spread of the COVID-19. Like many other diseases, we now know that this virus disproportionately affects communities of color. We also know that young people make up a large proportion of asymptomatic carriers. At a time where misinformation is rampant, we understand how critical it is to create free, engaging, research-based and culturally-relevant educational materials to help save lives.

Central to the initiative is the 20 Seconds or More music video performed by our founding artist and legendary rapper, Doug E. Fresh who co-wrote the song with multi-platinum producer, Artie Green and Gerry Gunn, along with medical oversight from our founder, Dr. Olajide Williams. The 20 Seconds or More song which is now available on Spotify and Apple Music aims to inspire dance/rapping challenges worldwide to share information widely.

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20 Seconds or More ft. Doug E. Fresh, Artie Green & Gerry Gunn

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The star-studded music video includes guest appearances by prominent artists, public health experts, athletes, entertainers and families including Ashanti, Adrian “Easy AD” Harris, Artie Green, Big Daddy Kane, Bill Bellamy, Benita Fitzgerald Mosley, Cedrick the Entertainer, Chuck D, Charlie Mack, Charlamagne tha God, Capone, Cole Anthony, Darryl “DMC” McDaniels, Doug E. Fresh, Dredrick Irving, Gerry Gunn, Jamie Foxx, Janell Snowden, Jesse Itzler, Jordin Sparks, Joseph Rev. “RUN” Simmons, Kelly Price, Lisa Raye McCoy,  Maurice DuBois, Dr. Mehmet Oz, Michael Blackson, Monie Love, Pete Rock, Rasheed Wallace,  Sara Blakely, Sky Katz, Teddy Riley, Tori Kelly, Toya Johnson, Dr. Olajide Williams, Lori Rose Benson, NYPD Assistant Chief Juanita N. Holmes, Dr. James Noble and family, LaShawn Jones, Santa Maria-Gronholm family, Rivera-Ezeta family and Dr. Danielle Chase.

We encourage you all to spread the word as a Hip Hop Public Health MC. Next week, we plan on sharing free lesson plans and other health education materials for K-12 teachers and students in collaboration with our partners at the Online Physical Education Network. Check back in and make sure to subscribe to our newsletter below for updates.

Join the movement online using the hashtag #20SecondsOrMore and tag @HHPHorg to get featured on our social media.

Philanthropic support for the initiative has been provided by the Bristol Myers Squibb Foundation and the Bristol Myers Squibb Black Organization for Leadership Development, an employee resource group.


Please take a short break from the many creative and entertaining digital programs and events to read this provocative Article of facts, from the NEW YORK TIMES.

The Times has compiled this important timeline of facts and made it available to us – for free! Read it thoroughly maybe even more than once – SHARE IT!! We must act now to stop this President from killing more of our loved ones!

Be Safe –

# thenewyorktimes #Citiesincrisis #RETV

“Is this true?!” Dr. Kadlec wrote back to the researcher. “If so we have a huge whole on our screening and quarantine effort,” including a typo where he meant hole. Her response was blunt: “People are carrying the virus everywhere.”

“These final days of February, perhaps more than any other moment during his tenure in the White House, illustrated Mr. Trump’s inability or unwillingness to absorb warnings coming at him. He instead reverted to his traditional political playbook in the midst of a public health calamity, squandering vital time as the coronavirus spread silently across the country.”

“The uninvited message could not have conflicted more with the president’s approach at the time of playing down the severity of the threat. And when aides raised it with Mr. Trump, he responded that he was unhappy that Mr. Navarro had put his warning in writing.”

“Mr. Trump had agreed to give an Oval Office address on the evening of March 11 announcing restrictions on travel from Europe, where the virus was ravaging Italy. But responding to the views of his business friends and others, he continued to resist calls for social distancing, school closures and other steps that would imperil the economy.”


He Could Have Seen What Was Coming: Behind Trump’s Failure on the Virus

Entertainment has lost a Giant!

By now everyone on the globe should know that the Legend Bill Withers has passed on.

And just like all of us who hold love ones dear, Bill will always be remembered for his incredible vocal talent, writing ability and soulful vibes that even today resonates among multiple generations.

The outpour of love has been immense to say the least. From his family, fans, peers, countless music aficionados and DJs who guard their collection of Wither Classics like gatekeepers to the most valuable commodities.

He recorded several major hits, including “Ain’t No Sunshine” (1971), “Grandma’s Hands” (1971), “Use Me” (1972), “Lean on Me” (1972) – The REAL National anthem, “Lovely Day” (1977), and “Just the Two of Us” (1980) “RIP Grover Washington”. Withers won three Grammy Awards and was nominated for six more. His life was the subject of the 2009 documentary film Still Bill. He was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2015.

Yes my friends, we have lost a giant.

So thank you Bill! Thank you for leaving us such a rich Catalogue and inspiring a mass of artist including Legendary D-Nice who dedicated his phenomenal Instagram show to
his legacy. Questlove of the legendary Roots Crew and die hard Bill Withers fan meticulously guided us through a Bill Withers experience that we will never forget!!

We will continue to honor our Entertainment Legends. These are the giants that we aspire to be and these are the shoulders for which we stand. They are strong broad shoulders so all aboard! We will NEVER Forget!

Revisit his music, use it! We can always lean on Bill. Rest In Peace Bill, your spirit will remain.

#BillWithers #DNICE #Questlove