Tawanna A. Black, Founder and CEO of the Center for Economic Inclusion, is a nationally recognized thought-leader known for influencing, inspiring, and equipping cross-sector leaders to transform a personal conviction for equality into actions that produce equitable and thriving communities.
For more than 20 years, Tawanna has led multi-sector collaboratives, inclusion and equity strategy development, and economic revitalization organizations across the country.
In 2017, Tawanna founded the Center for Economic Inclusion headquartered in Saint Paul, Minnesota. The Center is the nation’s first Black woman-founded and led organization dedicated exclusively to closing racial income, employment and wealth gaps and building inclusive and equitable regional economies.
Under Tawanna’s leadership, the Center’s strategists, data architects, analysts and researchers guide the work of corporations, public and private sector employers and policy makers to transform policies and investments and build anti-racist workplaces capable of creating shared prosperity and economies that truly work for everyone.
Tawanna is a non-resident senior fellow of the Brookings Institution Metro Program and has served on more than 35 nonprofit and philanthropic boards. Today she serves on the boards of LIIF, Minnesota Tech Association, Washburn University Alumni Foundation Board of Trustees, and Minnesota Council of Churches.
The recipient of many awards and recognitions, most recently Tawanna was recognized by the City of Minneapolis as a 2021 History Maker and named the 2021 Person of the Year by Twin Cities Business magazine, Top 25 Disrupters on Race by Living Cities in 2017, and Women Presidents Organization Leading Business Owners of Color Award in 2022.
Tawanna resides in the Twin Cities with her husband, Eric Black, and two children Traviata and Christian.
- Founder & Chief Executive Officer, Center for Economic Inclusion