black entrepreneurs

Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaah yeaaaaaaaaaaah, boi!
What? Y’all thought this was over?!
-P’Diddy montage of phrases like “we don’t stop”, “can’t stop” loop in background-
*waves hands in front of face*
*Busta Rhymes hopping and dancing toward camera*
((((((90′s bad boy video era vibes))))))

We just finished covering MP of fashion blog Define Chic for our very first Hillman Alumni interview feature (read here) and we want you in the line up!

Y’all know the drill! We’re highlighting young, black entrepreneurs who are using their talents to make a platform for themselves! 
The young, black, talented- GIFTED BLACK FOLK!!!!! DAS ALL YOU, B!!!!

If you are young, black and want to showcase your craft, be sure to dress up in your Hillman gear and shoot your story plus pics over to

P.S. If you ain’t got no Hillman Gear, that’s cool ,too.
We don’t discriminate. It would be cute, doe.
…You could dress up as your favorite character from the show like MP did.
It’s your world.

Black Owned Businesses

The owners and operators pose in front of The Queen City Drug Store on East Second St. in Brooklyn, NY (c. 1910). Photographer: Unknown

Sadly, almost all of Brooklyn’s Second Ward (bounded by the East River, Fulton St., Sands St. and Bridge St.),where many Black owned businesses once stood, was demolished by the City’s Urban Renewal program in the 1960’s and 1970’s.

(Info: Historic Landmarks Commission, Museum of the City of New York)

Image and caption via African-American History Is AMERICAN History.


Today we turn 30. Along with making the conscious decision to both quit our jobs & pursue our dreams we’ve also taken away some valuable lessons as we enter our 4th decade. The seasoning that comes in the years between 20 & 30 is indispensable. It can’t be taught in any school or read in any book. As often as we remember, we try to be the women we want to be. Sometimes we forget. Sometimes we lose sight of her. But, she always comes back. We’ve learned to cultivate important relationships. To water our flowers & pick our weeds. Fill ourselves with love, with whole foods, with books & good energy. Those are the things that are important. Learned, sometimes the hard way, to let people deal with their own shit. Not to internalize others issues or attempt to save them. People aren’t things to be rescued & repaired. We’re entitled to occupy as much space as we like with our awesomeness, & have become incredulous of anybody who tells us differently. The process of unlearning while simultaneously learning has been the most transforming of experiences in our lives. There’s a lot of rewiring and re-understanding that has to gradually take the place of everything we’ve been telling ourselves for so long. We deserve to occupy space. We deserve to stand up for ourselves & claim our right to happiness. We hope you do too.

In support of black owned Black Friday

Everyone go support cheyennekimora! She is a designer based in Orlando, Fl, specializing in custom women’s dresses! They are beautifully handcrafted pieces of work and they are great for any occasion. I’m sure you’ll need a dress for New Years! Visit her website!!

History of Black Business in America: Capitalism, Race, Entrepreneurship by Juliet E. K. Walker

Despite almost four centuries of black independent self-help enterprises, the agency of African Americans in attempting to forge their own economic liberation through business activities and entrepreneurship has remained noticeably absent from the historical record. Juliet Walker’s award-winning History of Black Business in America is the only source that provides a detailed study of the continuity, diversity, and multiplicity of independent self-help economic activities among African Americans.

This new, updated edition divides the original work into two volumes. The first volume covers African American business history through the end of the Civil War and features a new introduction, as well as the first comprehensive account of black business during the Civil War. By emphasizing the African origins of black business practices and highlighting the contributions of black women, enslaved and free, Walker casts aside the long-held assumption that a “lack of a business tradition” is responsible for the failure of African Americans to establish successful, large-scale enterprises. [book link]


Important books that Melanoid people should read.

1.How Europe Underdeveloped Africa - Walter Rodney

2. The Wretched of the Earth- Frantz Fanon

3. Black Economics - Janwaza Kunjufu

4. The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks- Rebecca Skloot

5. Selected Writings and Speeches of Marcus Garvey

6. The Art of War - Sun Tzu

7. The Historical Origin of Christianity - Walter Williams

8. The Historical Origin of Islam - Walter Williams

9. World’s Great Men of Color - J.A. Rogers

10. Growing Up X - Ilyasah Shabazz

Checkout your local Black owned bookstore for these! If all fails checkout Amazon or Ebay.


This commercial promo is to empower, uplift, encourage, and inspire. 

Concept: illustrates the strength and courage of women breaking against those negative sterotypes.  WE ARE ALL DESTINED FOR GREATNESS!

Visyoulize is more than just a clothing line, it’s expression, it’s a movement, it’s a culture, it’s life.. “TO THINK TO CREATE TO BE” 

IG & Twitter: @visyoulizevyz


Young Entrepreneur Uses Soap Business to Help the Homeless

Donovan Smith, 11, donates 20% of sales to the Supportive Housing Coalition of New Mexico

At the ripe old age of 11, Donovan Smith already possesses a sense of philanthropy and business acumen far beyond his years. He is the founder and owner of Toil and Trouble, a bath product company located in Albuquerque, NM, and is using this platform to help give others a fresh start.

Smith is the creative mind behind every aspect of his personalized soap goods from the molds, to the fragrance and the color. His soap, which comes in the shape of donuts, ice cream, pies, and more, look so good that you will literally want to eat them.

As if the products aren’t sweet enough, the reward is even sweeter. Smith donates 20% of the sales from his soaps to the Supportive Housing Coalition of New Mexico, the same organization that helped him and his mother get back on their feet when they struggled with homelessness three years ago.

His mother, Casey, a former Navy cryptologist living with PTSD and a leg injury from her service in the military, was unable to find a job anywhere when she returned from duty, often hearing she was overqualified.

But things are looking up for Casey and Donovan, thanks in large part to local groups like the Supportive Housing Coalition of New Mexico. Now she has a job, an apartment, and a hobby, helping her son with his budding soap business.

Since its inception, Toil and Trouble has become a local hit. Donovan now sells his products at the Rail Yards Market in Albuquerque, where he is the youngest vendor there. With a booth set up every Sunday and a growing demand for his personalized bathing products, young Donovan is definitely on his way to early success.


To learn more about Donovan and Toil and Trouble, visit:


I choose to celebrate kings whenever I see them, since I started with celebrating the cool. Take into consideration: what and how much it takes to actually found something. To found anything, no matter how grand or meek, is something awesome.

With that, I salute you, King Kelly, and am excited to see where your vision travels. Ladies and gentlemen, @MrRefined himself.