The Black Founders mission is to increase the number of successful black entrepreneurs in technology.
Our goal is to create an ecosystem that stimulates tech entrepreneurship and fosters economic growth in the community. Our vision for Black Founders is to develop global programs that equip entrepreneurs, inspire innovation, and allow us to share resources and knowledge.
Our organizational structure includes two separate organizations, each with a unique focus. Friends of Black Founders is a charitable organization (501c3 is in process) and operates our educational programs and conferences. Black Founders Startup Ventures is a separate for-profit venture with a focus on startup financing.
Why Black Founders
In 2010, the black demographic entered entrepreneurship at a rate of 0.24% and comprised 9% of the total new entrepreneurship activity in the US. (source: Kauffman Foundation)
Black entrepreneurs, however, remain underrepresented in the tech entrepreneurship space. Black entrepreneurs make up only 1% of VC-backed tech startup founders and during the period measured from January to June 2010, the median amount of funding secured by an all-black founding team was $1.3 million, compared to $2.2M for a racially mixed team, and $2.3M for an all-white team. (source: CB Insights)
Who We Are
The founding team of Black Founders is made up of four entrepreneurial friends who met in San Francisco and wanted to create an organization that would empower entrepreneurs and provide founders with access to advice, mentorship, and funding.
|Chris Bennett is the co-founder and CEO of Soldsie, a web based product that allows merchants to sell through their Facebook news feed. He is passionate about social change, innovation, and the Internet. He has a background founding businesses from an early age and his last startup, LiquidBooks, was a success on the University of Pennsylvania campus. In his free time, he loves to travel, swap stories, and explore San Francisco. Chris holds a B.S. in Economics from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania.|
|Hadiyah Mujhid is an entrepreneur and software engineer. She is passionate about tech, startups, and all things geek. Hadiyah is also a community advocate and serves as a mentor to disadvantaged youth. Hadiyah holds a B.S. in Computer Science from University of Maryland Eastern Shore and an MBA from Drexel University.|
|Nnena Ukuku is an attorney who works with early stage startups. She works with them because, like her, they believe they can change their world and are passionate. She is involved in Black Founders because she wants to see minorities and women thrive–not simply survive. Nnena is active within the San Francisco Bar Association. She enjoys dancing (tango), writing plays, cooking and singing. She also enjoys filling her home with food and good conversation.|
Monique Woodard is an entrepreneur, marketing expert, and the creator of Speak Chic — the mobile app that teaches you how to pronounce fashion brands. She has worked in product management and marketing for more than ten years with a focus on e-commerce, affiliate marketing, subscription commerce, and online entertainment. Monique is passionate about creating consumer web and mobile products. She holds a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Miami.