About the Business Leadership Council
The mission of the Business Leadership Council is to advocate to Chicago land corporations, non-profits, local, county and state government about the importance of doing significant business with African-American owned firms on a consistent and on-going basis, primarily through organized contacts with the leadership of the entities.
The Business Leadership Council believes that all of these entities must recognize the value of working with African American owned businesses and do more to provide contracting opportunities to African Americans doing business in every professional service as well as traditional construction and real-estate related businesses, which benefits the African American community.
Inherent to this mission is the development of young corporate professionals and business owners to become the next generation of corporate and political leaders.
Influence policies and business practices to increase opportunities for African American inclusion.
Advocacy through organized contacts with the leadership of corporations, institutions, and with elected officials.
Growing African American owned businesses to scale and capacity, advancing the careers of African American corporate professionals, developing the next generation of leadership, raising the standard of living in the community.
The Beginning – History of the Business Leadership Council
In 2010, several prominent African American corporate professionals and entrepreneurs came together and pooled their resources to support African American leadership in politics and business.
The group realized that the African American business leaders needed to speak up for the community as well as be a representative voice to advocate for economic parity, effective political representation and with regard to social issues affecting us all, thus the Business Leadership Council was formally organized in February 2011.
Leadership to me means having passion about what you do and perseverance to achieve your goals. I believe that leaders are ordinary people who accept or are placed under extraordinary circumstances that bring forth their untapped potential, producing a character that inspires the confidence and trust of others.
Success is not about how smart you are. It is about how much passion and determination you have to relentlessly pursue your dream. You must be self-confident. Some may call it an ego. But you must believe in yourself, because there will be many others that will not believe in you or your idea.
My personal path to success is exemplified by the following poem that I live by: I’m tired of sailing my little boat, far inside the harbor bar. I want to go out where the big ships float, out on the deep where the great ones are. And should my frail craft prove too slight for waves that sweep those billows o’er, I’d rather go down in the stirring fight than drowse to death at the sheltered shore.
I get complete joy and delight- seeing a near abandoned Black Boy – go on to complete 4 years at Urban Prep, mature and be admitted to a 4 year college.
Each of us has a responsibility, indeed a duty to not only pursue personal, professional excellence, but the seemingly elusive communal excellence which cannot occur without direct and informed engagement. This further requires a purposeful existence with a clear set of objectives: focused, deliberate strategies which result in better opportunities in the legal and business professions, proper government services and improvements in the neighborhoods of Chicago. The aforementioned is where my interests can be found.
My greatest growth has come at times when I have stepped outside of my comfort zone.Part of my purpose in life is to bring people together around common goals and shared interests.
Chicago is a world class city. Being from this elite city allows me to have world class thoughts. At a very young age, I realized that I was the author of my fate and that fate includes helping others and being around people that didn’t think alike. Helping others achieve their goals brings me gratitude. My life is as unique as the architecture you see throughout this beautiful city
I am an avid golfer. It not only provides relaxation, exercise and a friendly competitive spirit, it is a great way to talk business among colleagues. My firm belief in the mantra, “To Whom Much is Given, Much is Required,” motivates me into giving back and helping others. Taking the time to mentor the next generation is a priority for me.
One of the most significant challenges facing the African American Community is the quality of education provided to our youth. It is important that all of us contribute to the improvement of education in our community. In my spare time, I enjoy golfing and traveling abroad.
Understanding that I stand on the shoulder of giant’s, I view it my responsibility to take advantage of every opportunity afforded to me. Not just for my benefit, but also so that the generation that follows will have the opportunity reach even higher heights.
- Frank Clark
- Jim Reynolds
- John Rogers
- Tony Anderson
- Robert Blackwell
- Melody Spann-Cooper
- Dr. Leon Finney
- Hermene Hartman
- Elzie Higginbottom
- John Hooker
- Larry Ivory
- Marty King
- Paul King, Jr.
- Lyle Logan
- Lester McKeever
- James Montgomery
- Ralph Moore
- Langdon Neal
- Marty Nesbitt
- Steve Pugh
- Tim Rand
- Eric Reeves