Author Archives: hbcumoney

Jackson State University Alumnus & Former NFL Player Turns HBCUpreneur/Chefpreneur


“Cooking is not just about ingredients, recipes, and cooking. It’s about harnessing imagination, empowerment, and creativity.” – Guy Fieri

The road to success rarely takes the path we have drawn up for ourselves. Along the way as we are pursuing our success we start to learn more things about ourselves. We may realize what we thought was our passion really is not and something we have tinkered with actually is the thing that truly brings heat to our kitchen. Enter, Tobias Dorzon, a Jackson State University alumnus, who spent multiple years in both the NFL and CFL, but whose true calling had been more or less a mere hobby.

In a recent interview with CNBC, Tobias Dorzon reveals how he hung up the cleats, picked up the apron, and became a culinary superstar –  actually the latter following in the footsteps of his father. He tells CNBC, “Cooking was something I always loved. But it wasn’t until I ventured off and stopped playing (sports) that I realized I loved it more than football.”

Now, Dorzon is the owner of Victory Chefs, a catering company started in 2014, and Victory Truck, a food truck venture which launched January 2018 and tackles the streets and stomachs of Washington D.C. The food truck and catering company are a launching pad for Dorzon to one day open a full-service restaurant as word travels throughout the D.C./Maryland/Virginia area of he and his teams exquisite cuisine.

HBCU Money reached out to Mr. Dorzon and Victory Chefs, inquiring how his time at Jackson State helped prepare him, “Being the unofficial team chef while I played ball was my first segue into preparing meals for athletes. We were a family on and off the field, and me being able to feed my brothers the home cooking that they were used to from back home was a great feeling!”

This is a prime opportunity to connect the work that agricultural HBCUs also known as the 1890s do with African American farmers and farms and connect them with the end users like Chef Dorzon, all while creating research opportunities for the institutions themselves. It also bodes for an argument, that an HBCU culinary school should be formed to diversify, hone, and explore the interest of many African Americans who may want the HBCU experience, but have a non-academic interest. There is lot to bite off and chew in the possibilities of connecting our ecosystem, but with stories like Chef Dorzon’s, we expect it will be an amazing meal that we can all enjoy.

Visit The Victory Chef team at https://www.thevictorychefs.com/

You can also find them on Instagram: @kingcheftd & @thevictorytruck

 

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HBCU Money’s 2018 African American Owned Bank Directory


(Founders of Merchants & Farmers Bank in Durham, North Carolina)

All banks are listed by state. In order to be listed in our directory the bank must have at least 51 percent African American ownership. You can click on the bank name to go directly to their website.

OTHER KEY FINDINGS:

  • Key losses were the sale of First State Bank in Danville, Virginia.
  • AAOBs are in 16 states and territories. Key states absent are Florida, Mississippi, New York, Ohio, and Virginia.
  • Alabama, Georgia, and Tennessee, each have two AAOBs.
  • 2017 Median AAOBs Aseets: $133 096 000 ($109 858 000)*
  • 2017 Average AAOBs Assets: $222 831 000 ($218 346 000)*
  • Of the surviving African American bank assets saw a 2.1 percent increase or net gain of approximately $85.2 million in assets in 2017.
  • AAOBs control 0.03 percent of America’s $15.4 trillion Bank Owned Assets.
  • AAOBs control 1.9 percent of FDIC designated Minority-Owned Bank Assets, which is down from 2 percent in 2017.
  • There has not been an AAOB started in 17 years.
  • 11 of 2016’s 19 AAOBs saw increases in assets.
  • For comparison, Asian American Owned Banks have approximately $112.4 billion in assets spread over 76 institutions. An almost 300 percent increase over the past two years.

There are 19 African American owned banks (AAOBs) with assets totaling approximately $4.2 billion in assets or approximately 0.38 percent of African America’s $1.1 trillion in buying power. An unchanged percentage from 2017.

ALABAMA

ALAMERICA BANK

Location: Birmingham, Alabama

Founded: January 28, 2000

FDIC Region: Atlanta

Assets: $35 328 000

Asset Change (2017): Down 2.6%

COMMONWEALTH NATIONAL BANK

Location: Mobile, Alabama

Founded: February 19, 1976

FDIC Region: Atlanta

Assets: $49 485 000

Asset Change (2017): Down 11.4%

CALIFORNIA

BROADWAY FEDERAL BANK FSB

Location: Los Angeles, California

Founded: February 26, 1947

FDIC Region: San Francisco

Assets: $411 638 000

Asset Change (2017): Down 0.4%

DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA

INDUSTRIAL BANK

Location: Washington, DC

Founded: August 18, 1934

FDIC Region: New York

Assets: $423 202 000

Asset Change (2017): Up 8.9%

GEORGIA

CARVER STATE BANK

Location: Savannah, Georgia

Founded: January 1, 1927

FDIC Region: Atlanta

Assets: $42 077 000

Asset Change (2017): Up 5.9%

CITIZENS TRUST BANK

Location: Atlanta, Georgia

Founded: June 18, 1921

FDIC Region: Atlanta

Assets: $428 579 000

Asset Change (2017): Up 5.6%

ILLINOIS

ILLINOIS SERVICE FEDERAL SAVINGS & LOAN

Location: Chicago, Illinois

Founded: January 01, 1934

FDIC Region: Chicago

Assets: $133 096 000

Asset Change (2017): Up 26.3%

LOUISIANA

LIBERTY BANK & TRUST COMPANY

Location: New Orleans, Louisiana

Founded: November 16, 1972

FDIC Region: Dallas

Assets: $605 490 000

Asset Change (2017): Down 1.0%

MARYLAND

HARBOR BANK OF MARYLAND

Location: Baltimore, Maryland

Founded: September 13, 1982

FDIC Region: New York

Assets: $266 208 000

Asset Change (2017): Up 7.2%

MASSACHUSETTS

ONEUNITED BANK

Location: Boston, Massachusetts

Founded: August 02, 1982

FDIC Region: New York

Assets: $658 014 000

Asset Change (2017): Up 1.8%

MICHIGAN

FIRST INDEPENDENCE BANK

Location: Detroit, Michigan

Founded: May 14, 1970

FDIC Region: Chicago

Assets: $286 561 000

Asset Change (2017): Up 21.4%

NEW JERSEY

CITY NB OF NEW JERSEY

Location: Newark, New Jersey

Founded: June 11, 1973

FDIC Region: New York

Assets: $213 858 000

Asset Change (2017): Down 4.1%

NORTH CAROLINA

MECHANICS & FARMERS BANK

Location: Durham, North Carolina

Founded: March 01, 1908

FDIC Region: Atlanta

Assets: $254 776 000

Asset Change (2017): Down 17.6%

PENNSYLVANIA

UNITED BANK OF PHILADELPHIA

Location: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Founded: March 23, 1992

FDIC Region: New York

Assets: $59 009 000

Asset Change (2017): Up 5.4%

SOUTH CAROLINA

SOUTH CAROLINA COMMUNITY BANK

Location: Columbia, South Carolina

Founded: March 26, 1999

FDIC Region: Atlanta

Assets: $52 586 000

Asset Change (2017): Up 2.5%

TENNESSEE

CITIZENS SAVINGS B&T COMPANY

Location: Nashville, Tennessee

Founded: January 4, 1904

FDIC Region: Dallas

Assets: $107 165 000

Asset Change (2017): Down 2.5%

TRI-STATE BANK OF MEMPHIS

Location: Memphis, Tennessee

Founded: December 16, 1946

FDIC Region: Dallas

Assets: $86 651 000

Asset Change (2017): Down 15.4%

TEXAS

UNITY NB OF HOUSTON

Location: Houston, Texas

Founded: August 01, 1985

FDIC Region: Dallas

Assets: $96 010 000

Asset Change (2017): Up 14.0%

WISCONSIN

COLUMBIA SAVINGS & LOAN ASSOCIATION 

Location: Milwaukee, Wisconsin

Founded: January 1, 1924

FDIC Region: Chicago

Assets: $23 973 000

Asset Change (2017): Down 1.8%

 

Kolors By K Hops Into Rarefied Air By Landing Leaping Bunny Certification


In another milestone for startup cosmetic company Kolors By K, they recently became a recognized company by Cruelty Free International’s Leaping Bunny Program. The program per their website, “is the gold-standard in cruelty-free certification for personal care and household products companies and signifies no animal testing at any stage of product development.” Internationally, there are less than 1,000 companies with such designation. As consumers become more conscious about how the products they consume are made, being an early adopter of Leaping Bunny’s criteria is poised to position Kolors By K as an up and coming leader in the cosmetic industry.

The beauty industry itself seems to just keep going and going like another bunny, growing from $160 billion in sales in 2003 to almost half a trillion in sales today. It is an industry that seems to show no signs of slowing down either, especially with people living longer and the rising middle classes in developing nations, there will be demand on vanity and simply feeling good about oneself that the beauty industry provides. It also does not hurt that this industry is women-centrist as we appear to be entering a golden age of women empowerment. Women who want to conquer the world, look good doing it, and who just happen to be more and more in control of the household incomes the world over. The industry is brimming with opportunity and that is one reason Kolors By K looks poised to leverage this recognition.

We reached out to Kolors By K Founder and CEO Kalauna Carter for comment on her company’s achievement, “To see Kolors By K get the Leaping Bunny Certification really gave us the push to keep going. If you are an entrepreneur and you hand make your products, to have your products Leaping Bunny Certified makes them official, internationally. The certification helps with reaching other potential customers in other countries. To be Leaping Bunny Certified is truly an amazing feeling for my company.” It is clear that Ms. Carter sees this as a moment that could take her company to another level. This just reaffirms the values, strategy, and direction that Kolors By K is setting for its future, which at the moment is shining brighter than ever.

 

 

FAMU Alumna & Atlanta Cigar Week Co-Founder Octavia Toliver is Adding New Flavor to the Old Boys’ Club of Cigars


On any given day, you can find Herficionado, Octavia Toliver’s moniker, just about anywhere from the cigar shop to a rooftop terrace puffing on a cigar and planning her next move as she takes the cigar industry by storm. A storm that she hopes will continue to change the demographics of those who embrace a good stogie on a beautiful afternoon and present opportunities as far as the eye can see, smoke clouds aside. The cigar world has traditionally been the stomping grounds of old white business men, but Ms. Toliver’s “feminine perspective” as she puts it is bringing elegance, style, and a breath of knowledge that runs cigar circles around many of her male counterparts who dare try to see her as  just a beautiful face. Nor is she alone as the #SOTL or Sisters Of The Leaf are a rapidly growing and yet underappreciated segment in the cigar world. According to the CDCP, women cigar smokers have grown from 1/10th of 1 percent in the 1980s to 2 percent of U.S. women’s population. It may not sound like a lot, but 2 percent is equivalent to 3.2 million women. As such, Ms. Toliver has become an influencer and innovator within the industry and HBCU Money was able to catch up with her for interview.

What is your HBCU background? I achieved a B.A. in English from Rattler Nation better known as Florida A&M University. Never ask a (southern) lady her age OR graduation year.

We are sure you get asked this a lot, but what got you interested in cigars? I was introduced to cigars by a guy who took me on a date to a cigar bar 10 years ago. I don’t remember his name, but I remember the cigars! Lol.

In light of the #MeToo and #TimesUp movements where women are empowering themselves to push back against sexual harassment in their respective spaces. How do you believe women are treated within the cigar industry? What improvements would you like to see in respect to women within the industry? The cigar industry is obviously male-dominated, so there are still some instances in which women are treated as just pretty faces. A woman can know more about cigars than any man, but if she’s very attractive, she will never be considered an authority, by some guys. This hasn’t been my experience, completely, because I’ve gotten tremendous support from men in the industry, but I’ve definitely felt the resistance from some. I’m not really sure if there is an improvement that can/will be made. I just advise all of the SOTL’s (Sisters Of The Leaf) to keep carrying themselves with class so that eventually the guys will come around. Or they won’t and we’ll start more of our own cigar companies! *wink*

For HBCU students who may have an interest in the industry, what advice would you give them on getting started? Frequent your local cigar lounge or shop! Hang out, ask questions, try various profiles! Join a Facebook cigar group! There are tens if not hundreds of thousands of people online who are just waiting to teach others about cigars! Just like with any other industry, educate yourself and go for it.

Tell our audience about what led to the creation and mission behind you co-founding the Atlanta Cigar Week? Atlanta Cigar Week was created from a desire to showcase Atlanta as the top cigar market in the country. We have almost 100 cigar shops and lounges so we wanted to show the country what we have to offer. ACW2017, we executed 13 events in 7 days! We had a great turnout, but we’re expecting even more attendees and sponsors for 2018. We are also expanding to Dubai in May, and hopefully at least one other city before the end of the year!

Do you think your HBCU experiences prepared you in any special way for the work and life you live today? I’m not sure if it prepared me for my work, but my experience at an HBCU was a great bridge from childhood to my adult life. FAMU was my first experience where minorities were the majority. I’m from a city that is sometimes called the Redneck Riviera, but it was just HOME to me. In retrospect, I now see that my perspective of black people was quite limited. Attending an HBCU opened my eyes a great deal because there students from many backgrounds who just all happened to be black. When we speak of diversity, we’re usually referring to people of different ethnicities or races, but I had never seen such diversity in people of the same race. I now live in Atlanta which is the same on a much larger scale.

What is one of your fondness HBCU memory? One of my fondest memories was Set Fridays at FAMU. As a freshman, I lived in a dorm only a few yards away from the set, which was a courtyard on campus. On Fridays, vendors would come set up tables and food stands! There would be music playing, and all of the students would hang out in between classes. I LOVED it because everyone would put on their flyest outfits, and the Greeks would always come stroll through. The camaraderie out there was absolutely beautiful.

You can follow Octavia Toliver on Instagram at @herficionado for all of her latest projects and events.

 

 

HBCU Money’s 2017 Top 10 HBCU Endowments


HBCU endowments after a sluggish few years have bounced back with a spring in their step. Half of this year’s list has double digit gains in their endowment’s market value, which is the best showing since 2014. There are certainly some strong arguments of what has led to this turnaround in the past 365 days. One thing for sure is the strong stock market helped all universities and colleges in increased values. There has also been a renewed interest HBCU engagement among the African American community in general with increased admissions and donations across many HBCU institutions. This always bodes well for future endowments given that much of alumni giving is a numbers game. With the economy by many estimates on growing yet shaky ground, future market value growth for HBCU endowments may rest even more so in the pockets of alumni to steady the ship when rough waters approach so that will be something to keep an eye on.

We can only hope that Howard University (despite this year’s absence) is creeping towards the billion dollar endowment mark because the gap between the Top 10 HWCU/PWI endowments and the Top 10 HBCU/PBI endowments seems to only balloon year after year, with the gap increasing from an approximately $140 billion in 2010 to the current almost $200 billion. A gap that for perspective is twice as much as the world’s richest man, Jeff Bezos, entire net worth. As it stands now, there are 100 HWCU/PWIs with a billion dollar endowment or greater and 10 with a market value of $10 billion and greater.

Although they are far from the Top 10, Texas College continues to impress with their endowment’s market value growth, placing 9th out of the 818 colleges and universities that reported to this year’s NACUBO survey with 33.8 percent growth. Whatever is going on in Tyler, Texas, we encourage others to take note.

1. Howard University – Unreported**

2. Spelman College – $366 056 (5.5%)

3.  Hampton University – $279 093 (10.0%)

4.  Meharry Medical College – $153 653 (7.7%)

5. Florida A&M University – $113 000 (-0.1%)

6.  Tennessee State University – $55 840 (11.1%)

7.  University of the Virgin Islands – $55 549 (1.1%)

8.  North Carolina A&T State University  – $55 231 (14.9%)

9.  Texas Southern University – $54 171 (12.5%)

10. Virginia State University – $51 122 (11.6%)

Take a look at how an endowment works. Not only scholarships to reduce the student debt burden but research, recruiting talented faculty & students, faculty salaries, and a host of other things can be paid for through a strong endowment. It ultimately is the lifeblood of a college or university to ensure its success generation after generation.

 

*Note: The change in market value does NOT represent the rate of return for the institution’s investments. Rather, the change in the market value of an endowment from FY2016 to FY2017 reflects the net impact of: 1) withdrawals to fund institutional operations and capital expenses; 2) the payment of endowment management and investment fees; 3) additions from donor gifts and other contributions; and 4) investment gains or losses.

**Howard University did not report their endowment, but has been ranked number one since our list began. As such, we acknowledge the high probability that they remain as such.

Additional Notes:
NACUBO Average Endowment – $704 527 (8.9%)
NACUBO Median Endowment – $130 963 (6.0%)
Top 10 HWCU Endowments combined – $198.4 billion                                        Top 10 HBCU Endowments combined – $1.9 billion

Source: National Association of College & University Business Officers