Following the COVID-19 boom in small and micro-businesses, a sharp rise in the number of employer businesses owned by Black women ensued. However, despite this and other promising signs of growing economic inclusion, Black women still represent less than 1% of all employer businesses in the U.S., and substantial structural barriers remain to growing the number of Black women entrepreneurs. Put simply, more action is needed to deliver lasting and transformative change toward a more inclusive economy.
On Thursday, May 25, Brookings Metro hosted a virtual event to assess the state of Black women-owned employer businesses across the U.S., in collaboration with the Path to 15|55 initiative, which endeavors to grow the percentage of Black-owned employer firms. Brookings Senior Fellow Andre Perry presented findings from a new report “Who is driving Black business growth? Insights from the latest data on Black-owned businesses.” An expert panel shared their insights, discussing the role that Black women can play in growing economically diverse and thriving communities across the U.S., the barriers that they face, and how we can capitalize on the current momentum to build on the gains already made.