Monthly Archives: February 2021

11 Black Trade/Professional Organizations You Have Never Heard Of – But Should Join Today


“Networking has been cited as the number one unwritten rule of success in business. Who you know really impacts what you know.” – Sallie Krawcheck

Our founder and chief economist, William A. Foster, IV, has a favorite saying, “Your net worth is a reflection of your network.” If you want to ascend to greater heights you have to connect with others who are also doing so. The people we associate with and the organizations we belong to can propel us socially and financially throughout our careers. However, knowing where to find professional networks and organizations has often proved challenging for African Americans not already in ‘the know’. Some of the more well known African American professional organizations are NABE (National Association of Black Engineers), NBMBAA (National Black MBA Association), and even NABA (National Association of Black Accountants) to name a few. You also do not have to be in that specific field to join that particular organization. A psychology major is not limited to only psychology trade/professional organizations. In fact, it is very important to join organizations that have no links with your current field to give yourself a more worldly view and expanded possibilities of opportunities. An accountant joining NABE may find out about an opportunity for an accountant position at an engineering firm or find a co-founder to launch their own engineering firm. Ultimately, the networking of African American professionals, especially HBCU graduates, into our own trade/professional organizations helps to strengthen and circulate the social and intellectual capital of African America’s private sector and therefore African America itself.

NABHOOD – National Association of Black Hotel Owners, Operators, and Developers

“Our primary goal here at NABHOOD is to increase the number of African-Americans developing, managing, operating and owning hotels; increase vendor opportunities & executive level jobs for minorities, thereby creating wealth within the African-American community. We do this by providing information about hotel ownership, investing, supplier opportunities, employment and other resources; our Annual International African American Hotel Ownership & Investment Summit & Trade Show is our best resource to help us accomplish this.”

AABE – American Association of Blacks in Energy

“The American Association of Blacks in Energy (AABE) is a national association of energy professionals founded and dedicated to ensure the input of African Americans and other minorities into the discussions and developments of energy policies regulations, R&D technologies, and environmental issues.”

NBMOA – National Black McDonald’s Operators’ Association

“The National Black McDonald’s Operators Association (NBMOA) is a 47 year old Organization dedicated to ensuring that African American McDonald’s Owners are fully engaged in all of the benefits associated with owning McDonald’s restaurants. The NBMOA goal is the complete integration of NBMOA members, African American Employees and Vendors into the McDonald’s system. The NBMOA also works diligently to make sure that McDonald’s fully engage the African American community in a respectful and positive manner.”

NABFM – National Association of Black Food Manufactures

“The NABFM is a newly established nonprofit that exists to be a voice for people of African descent in food and beverage manufacturing. It was founded to address the unique needs of our community as we seek to gain further entry into the food manufacturing, supplier and related industries for our ultimate success.”

NBTEBA – National Black Tech Ecosystem Builders Association

“The National Black Tech Ecosystem Builder Association will unite black tech startup support organizations, black faith communities, K thru 12th Black STEAM educators, HBCUs, black civic tech organizations, and black technology organizations. The Association will empower on-the-ground black tech activists and black tech ecosystem builders to eradicate racial tech disparities in their cities by helping them to strengthen their local black tech ecosystems.”

OBAP – Organization of Black Aerospace Professionals

“OBAP will be a world-leading organization that changes lives by creating a pathway to success through educating youth, communities, and professionals—shaping an aerospace industry as diverse as the people we serve.”

NAAIA – National African American Insurance Association

“NAAIA is dedicated to empowering African American insurance professionals currently in the industry as well as celebrating their accomplishments. NAAIA is also committed to attracting talented individuals to the insurance industry. Through our work and affiliation with other organizations we are dedicated to increasing the awareness of opportunities and the attractiveness of careers in the insurance industry.”

OBMG – Organization of Black Maritime Graduates

“To assist and encourage by educating and increasing public awareness regarding minority involvement in the maritime and engineering industries through recruitment, mentoring, scholarships, and networking.”

AAAFA – Association of African American Financial Advisors

“AAAA is a non-profit membership organization for African American financial advisors and affiliated professionals. We work in alliance with academic leaders at HBCUs that support financial planning degree programs, legislative and regulatory bodies, financial services firms and consumer interest organizations. AAAA fosters the value of financial planning and advances the financial planning profession.” 

OBD – Organization of Black Designers

“OBD is a national professional organization of interior, industrial, architectural, fashion and graphic designers dedicated to promoting the visibility, empowerment, education and interaction of its membership and the understanding and value that diverse design perspectives contribute to world culture and commerce.”

RBCA – Regional Black Contractors Association

“The RBCA maintains very effective working relationship with state, municipal, and corporate leaders and their supplier diversity executives, elected and appointed officials for the support of African-American business development. Locally, statewide and in Washington, DC, we are constantly monitoring of pending legislation that might affect our member’s businesses, their growth and even their ability to conduct business. When legislation is being considered that affects our mission, the RBCA quickly mobilizes to work with key policy makers to support and ensure that every opportunity is available for the RBCA and its members.”

African America’s January 2021 Jobs Report – 9.2%


OVERALL UNEMPLOYMENT: 6.3% (6.7%)

AFRICAN AMERICAN: 9.2% (9.9%)

LATINO AMERICAN: 8.6% (9.3%)

EUROPEAN AMERICAN: 5.7% (6.0%)

ASIAN AMERICAN: 6.6% (5.9%)

Previous month in parentheses.

Analysis: African and Latino Americans saw a 70 basis point decline to lead all groups. Asian Americans had the worst increase among all groups with an increase of 70 basis points. Marginal movements of 30 basis points decrease by European Americans.

AFRICAN AMERICAN UNEMPLOYMENT RATE BY GENDER & AGE

AFRICAN AMERICAN MEN: 9.4% (10.4%)

AFRICAN AMERICAN WOMEN: 8.5% (8.4%)

AFRICAN AMERICAN TEENAGE: 17.3% (25.2%)

AFRICAN AMERICAN PARTICIPATION BY GENDER & AGE

AFRICAN AMERICAN MEN: 66.1% (65.2%)

AFRICAN AMERICAN WOMEN: 59.8% (59.5%)

AFRICAN AMERICAN TEENAGE: 29.3% (31.0%)

Analysis: African American Men saw a decline in their unemployment rate by 100 basis points. African American Women saw a margin uptick of 10 basis points. African American Teenage Group saw an acute drop of 790 basis points. Participation rates for Teenage Group declined by 170 basis points, African American Men increased by 90 basis points, and African American Women saw an increase 30 basis points.

African American Men-Women Job Gap: African American Women currently have 806,000 more jobs than African American Men in January. This is a decrease from 973,000 in December.

CONCLUSION: The overall economy added 49,000 jobs in January. African America added 262,000 jobs in January or 534 percent of the overall jobs added. “African American Men were the bulk of those jobs accounting for 77.4 percent. A major headway into the continued closing of the employment gap between African American men and women will have profound social, economic, and community implications,” William A. Foster, IV, chief economist for HBCU Money said. Per Yahoo Finance, “Hiring will pick up as restrictions are relaxed but gains will be stronger once the economy can fully reopen,” Rubeela Farooqi, chief U.S. economist for High Frequency Economics, said in an email Friday. “Until then, generous fiscal support will provide a safety net for households and businesses.”

HBCU Money™ Turns 9 Years Old


By William A. Foster, IV

“I still believe that if your aim is to change the world, journalism is a more immediate short-term weapon.” – Tom Stoppard

It is hard to believe that it has been nine years since HBCU Money was founded. It began with a conversation with Jarrett Carter, Sr., founder of HBCU Digest, about the lack of economics, finance, and investment information from an African American and African Diaspora perspective. He simply said, why do you not start one then. Challenge accepted and a challenge it has been. HBCU Alumni Owned media across the spectrum continues to fight to be a real and present voice in the ever changing landscape of media. Both trying to push the old guard forward and try to keep up with the competition and outsiders that seeks to control and own our narrative. They often seeing the value of our content, but with wretched intentions. This has and continues to be one of our great fights.

To be a voice of a community is an immense responsibility. Holding decisions makers accountable, helping inform the community in an unbiased manner, and yes, at times shaping the conversation. Sometimes it has been the duty of HBCU Alumni Owned media to present thoughts and visions that are ambitious and bold into the conversation about what is possible. It is a gentle balance that must be minded.

Going forward I will continue to help build HBCU Money, HBCU Politics, and our other media assets to be a formidable force for empowerment for the HBCU community and Diaspora. This I believe to be part of my life’s work. I am thankful for those who continue to fight along side me and for us.