Updated: Feb 9
Empowering Black ParentPreneuers matters. And today I am thrilled to announce the next group of ten entrepreneurs to receive a $1,000 grant from the ParentPreneur Foundation.
It's been about six months since, in the middle of a pandemic, we launched the ParentPreneur Foundation to empower Black ParentPreneurs, so they can leave a legacy for their beautiful Black children. We started with a $50,000 seed grant from renowned venture capitalist, Brad Feld, and quickly turned that into $200,000 of value for our community.
This is now our third round of grants! We have had a positive impact on the lives of our members and the thing I am most proud of, other than our thriving community, which has grown 18X, is that we paid for mental therapy for thirty people so far, shattering mental health stereotypes in the Black community.
Our exciting 2021 programs, which are already underway include: 1. Paying for more mental therapy.
2. Paying for virtual assistants.
3. Paying for virtual tutors for our members' children.
4. Paying for business legal services.
5. Paying for baby sitters; and
6. Paying for LinkedIn consulting to help members increase their social capital.
I am thrilled to soon announce a partnership with the Nasdaq Entrepreneurial Center and their Mentor Makers Movement program, which will help our members take their businesses to the next level. For Black entrepreneurs, lack of social capital is as big of a problem as lack of financial capital because it keeps us from executing our good ideas and, even worse, keeps us from imagining what's possible; this is unacceptable and our kids and grandkids deserve better.
Announcing the ParentPreneur Foundation's next ten recipients of the Sugar Plum Grant
Our grant is called the Sugar Plum Grant, named after my dog, Sugar, that I recently had to put down after ten beautiful years of companionship. Sugar was the most loving, loyal, and consistent being I ever met. With these $1,000 grants, I pray for love, loyalty, and consistency for these ten recipients.
Ruby Taylor - LEGACY! Card Game
LEGACY! is a pick and play card game where players try to create the most wealth possible through balancing a combination of assets and liabilities across several categories, including income, investments, and disruptive life events. Similar to "Life," Legacy combines luck with some amount of agency for each player, providing an object lesson in trying to make the most of circumstances and opportunities. What makes the game really stand out is its focus on diversity in the images on the cards. We are on a mission to close the racial wealth gap and have fun.
My family consists of my wife, 2 adopted children, and our dog, Bailey. We are a diverse family raising our children to give more than they take.
Why the ParentPreneur Foundation matters to me
The ParentPreneur Foundation has made the lonely road of starting LEGACY! less lonely. The support, encouragement, and resources provided by our community gives me the encouragement to keep moving forward. I can say without a doubt this community has given me the knowledge and support to stay in the fight and come out on the winning side.
Veronica Woodruff- Travelsist Travelsist is an online platform that provides baby essentials and accessory rentals, along with concierge services to families who travel with small children. At Travelsist, we deliver hand-selected safety-first, eco-friendly travel products to accommodate your family from arrival to landing, and every place in between.
I'm a mom to my beautiful four-year-old daughter, Lucia.
Why the ParentPreneur Foundation matters to me
The Parentprenuer Foundation is a blessing. I feel less alone on this journey and the foundation gives me a sense of community, support, and consistent inspiration.
Dock Ervin - Good Eatz by Doc Good Eatz by Doc is a personal chef, meal prep, & catering service. We offer unique, well crafted, healthy cuisine. "Good food, like music, feeds the soul," is our mantra.
I am a father of five beautiful spirits, two boys and three girls; my oldest is thirty and my youngest is nine. I learn something about myself through their eyes and by their upbringing. I am blessed to be called “dad.”
Why the ParentPreneur Foundation matters to me The foundation matters to me because it provides a place for us parents to network, connect, learn, and grow. It’s an outlet, a resource, and a safe haven for us entrepreneurs to express ourselves in order to cultivate our businesses and interests.
Marc Ward - MarcTech MarcTech is developing and exploring how we can combine artificial intelligence, current computer vision technology, and image recognition with drones to solve problems in law enforcement, without endangering human life.
I'm a single dad of a 13-year-old boy; his mom was killed in a car accident when he was six months old.
Why the ParentPreneur Foundation matters to me This amazing organization means a tremendous amount to me and the development of my technology. I made some amazing connections to people that I would normally not have access to. The events, programs, and educational tools are invaluable to me as a tech founder.
Alyson Calloway - The Mamas Movement
The Mamas Movement is a community that is creating a space where moms can unapologetically live purpose-filled lives post motherhood. By serving as a bridge and community of support for mamas on their respective journeys, The Mamas Movement empowers and challenges women to equip themselves with the tools and encouragement needed to lead purposeful, impactful lives - lives they more than deserve!
I am a single mom to the most amazing three-year-old boy, Thomas. Together, we reside in the DMV area and I am raising him with the understanding that with God, possibilities are limitless for him!
Why the ParentPreneur Foundation matters to me
The ParentPreneur Foundation means hope. It is a direct indication that along this business/life journey, we don't have to do it alone. Connecting with this community of incredible Black parents has been the blessing I never knew I needed! To be here, to be seen, to be in this community means the world!
N. Liberty White – CHOZEN MEDIA
CHOZEN MEDIA Kids is a media-tech and digital entertainment platform for children K-grade 5. Through interactive videos and virtual events in the arts, STEM, and mental health awareness, we exist to provide a healthy and safe choice for parents in the self-esteem and personal development of their children. By providing an exciting digital learning experience with diverse programming we help Black children see themselves as heroes, leaders, and stars of their own stories.
I am a solo mom of a fearless grade schooler who loves to make slime, ride her scooter, and watch her ‘friends’ on YouTube. She is my inspiration and my 'Why' for CHOZEN MEDIA Kids and all that I do to empower women in business and technology.
Why the ParentPreneur Foundation matters to me Once you decide to travel down the road of entrepreneurship, the way that you view and approach life changes. Your responsibilities, time, and the stressors that come with managing it all are things that only other entrepreneurs can truly understand. Now, add raising a child to the mix and everything gets amplified.
The reason that the ParentPreneur Foundation matters to me is that in addition to the webinars, articles, and resources that we gain access to, James Oliver is serious about seeing us succeed. Whether it be introductions, or bringing experts that he knows will help us grow our business, if it will add value to the community, he gets it done.
I will use this grant for therapy and business support services.
Nolan Rollins - SMRT MOUTH
SMRT Mouth is a mouthguard that is used to track hydration, core body temperature, heart rate levels and impact detection through biometric sensors embedded in the mouthguard; it provides coaches, performance specialists, sports scientists, and team doctors with unprecedented access to vital information during training and competition.
I am a first generation college graduate who had the pleasure of being the CEO of two Urban Leagues while being a serial entrepreneur. More importantly, I am the father of a 17-year-old young Black man named Mason Rollins who is the absolute best gift I could ever give to this world.
My job as a father and entrepreneur is to blaze a very distinctive path for a son who should have the world without any of the mistakes his father made in the past.
Why the ParentPreneur Foundation matters to me The ParentPreneur Foundation matters to me because it’s the first time on my entrepreneurial journey that I’ve been able to spend time in a safe place where both our love for entrepreneurship and our love for family are seen as super powers.
Madilynn Beck - Fountful Fountful is a social impact company whose vision is economic sovereignty for all. It's a dual marketplace app, that offers lifestyle services on-demand.
I’m a mom of two biracial littles (ages six and three) and I live in Palm Springs, CA. I love that my six-year-old daughter watches me in awe on my entrepreneurial journey and is getting the entrepreneurial bug herself.
Why the ParentPreneur Foundation matters to me The ParentPreneur Foundation is nothing but a Godsend! I've felt more isolated in this past year than ever before in all facets of my life-professionally, personally, and parentally. This organization has provided the safety and resources of a community of like-minded and like-looking people. Knowing I am not alone is the light in the dark.
Sonja Sulcer - SONJARZO Consulting & SEAT Caribbean SONJARZO is an innovation consulting firm whose clients contract us to design new programs, products, and services. SEAT Caribbean is a co-working space located in the US Virgin Islands.
I am married to my amazing husband, Dr. Jarvis Sulcer, and we are blessed with our beautiful daughter, Zofia. We enjoy going on vacation, running, and playing tennis. Why the ParentPreneur Foundation matters to me The ParentPreneur Foundation is a wonderful community where I can find inspiration, encouragement, and resources to help grow my companies. I also enjoy sharing my knowledge and experiences that can benefit other ParentPreneurs. James Oliver, the CEO of the foundation, is truly passionate and committed to helping members build a successful business.
LaNysha Adams, Phd. - Edlinguist Solutions
Our Grad Student Success Program is a nationally recognized academic coaching program that helps doctoral students complete their research and writing in half the time. Combatting the problem where over 60% of students enrolled in doctoral programs do not finish, Edlinguist combines the science and art of accountability, mastery, and productivity (AMP) in daily accountability, coach, peer support, and weekly live sessions.
After having a baby during the pandemic, I would be lying if I said I haven’t struggled with keeping my business afloat and raising my almost three year-old, while my husband - an Officer in the US Public Health Service Commissioned Corps - is deployed to help with pandemic relief. Why the ParentPreneur Foundation matters to me
The ParentPreneur Foundation has served as a lifeline for me. I learned about it when I was pregnant and it's been one of the best ways for me to meet other working parents, strategize about my business, and learn things I spent the previous year trying to learn. James has cultivated a community of experts where we take information from amazing presenters and quickly build off of that, saving lots of time getting up the learning curve. I’ve met authors who are crushing campaigns, people who are making apps and share important lessons learned, and other educators with whom I’m collaborating.
There you have it! Please join me in congratulating our winners of the Sugar Plum grant!
If our mission to empower Black ParentPreneurs, so they can leave a legacy for their children resonates with you, please make a tax-deductible donation; as little as $25 makes a big difference. If you are a Black ParentPreneur, please join our online community.
More to come. Peace and love,