The Black Work, Wages, and Wealth Agenda in Action

On August 13, 2023, we brought together cross-sectoral thought leaders, policymakers, and innovators who implement BEA’s Work, Wages, and Wealth agenda every day. Speakers and panels reflected on successes and discussed common challenges, including the potential impact of the Supreme Court’s affirmative action decision on efforts to advance Black prosperity.

Moderator Ellen McGirt and Sherrilyn Ifill, former President and Director-Counsel of the NAACP Legal Defense Fund, delved into the historical context of current challenges and the legal and business implications of SCOTUS’ affirmative action decision, emphasizing the unique capacity of attendees to influence how power players in business and industry react to the decision.

The second panel featured Otis Rolley, Head of Social Impact for Wells Fargo Foundation, Melissa Bradley, Managing Partner of 1863 Ventures, and Richelieu Dennis, Founder of Sundial Brands; Founder/Chair, Essence Ventures; Founder, New Voices Fund & New Voices Foundation; Founder/Chair, Social Mission Board on the health of the Black entrepreneurial ecosystem amid upheavals and cultural backlashes.

Jonathan Capehart moderated the final discussion of the day with Maryland Governor Wes Moore, and highlighted the influence of BEA’s Work, Wages, Wealth agenda on governance and the broader national political landscape, including on his historic 2022 gubernatorial campaign.


Photo Collage from The Gathering at Martha's Vineyard