Economic development expert shares thoughts on financial literacy at entrepreneurs’ event

economic development
PHOTO BY JEROLINE D. MCCARTHY/DAYTONA TIMES
Shown are Howard Holley of the Holley Group, guest speaker Dr. George C. Fraser, and AAEA founder/CEO Leslie F. Giscombe.

Dr. Fraser is founder/ chairman/ CEO of FraserNet, Inc., leading a global networking and economic development movement for people of African descent.

The creative genius of the Harlem Renaissance brought to Harlem some of the greatest minds and talents of African Americans during the 1920s. And so, the cultural explosion had embraced the backdrop of a recent event that influenced wealth development.

It was presented by the African-American Entrepreneurs Association (AAEA) with Leslie F. Giscombe in command as the founder and CEO.

The cultural expression drew significance as the second annual Black History event, setting the stage at the African American Cultural Society for faith-based speaker Dr. George C. Fraser – and was inclusive of other presentations, entertainment and dinner.

These presentations brought to focus: Sandra Shank, Wendy Smith-King, D’Lorah Butts-Lucas, Esq.; Leslie F. Giscombe, Dr. Evelyn Bethune, Yumalik Carey, Stan Alston, Wanda Moore of Vy Star Credit Union, Saute’ Kingz by Chef Count, Rob’s Jazz Express, and the Sapphire Ice Dancers.

COURTESY OF SANDRA SHANK
Sandra Shank was the mistress of ceremonies.

Renowned speaker

Dr. Fraser is founder/chairman/CEO of FraserNet, Inc., leading a global networking and economic development movement for people of African descent.

He was born in Brooklyn and was orphaned and a foster child for 15 years. For 20 years, he was in leadership at Procter & Gamble, United Way and the Ford Motor Company prior to founding FraserNet, Inc. in 1987.

Dr. Fraser has written six best-selling books, and has been featured on seven national magazine covers, earning over 350 awards and citations, including President Barack Obama’s Lifetime Achievement Award.

He’s been named one of the best speakers in America.

Launching WINDS

His “final act” is to use his massive network and influence to join the fight for financial literacy in Black America.

He is in the process of launching the WINDS Wealth Building Centers and Curriculum.

WINDS is a rebranding and upgrading of the “old-school’’ Black church “Wealth Ministries.”

Dr. Fraser’s vitae reads that, “Over the next decade, thousands of new and well-equipped WINDS Centers will be open, free of charge. Classroom instruction will be provided for free by thousands of underutilized financial services professionals, who will get Certified in Financial Instruction and use the innovative WINDS curriculum.”

Don’t compromise

In an eloquent speech – in a Black preacher’s intonation and cadence – Dr. Fraser, dubbed by Upscale magazine as among the “top 50 Power Brokers in Black America,” emphasized that:

Our suffering 400 years of intergenerational slavery went on for 13 generations to the detriment of the great-grandchildren.

“There was no slavery in humankind ever that egregious,” said Dr. Fraser. “We are an awesome and powerful people. We survived.

“But that 400 years, in case no one has told you – (but,) I’m going to tell you – was just a bump in the road to the magnificence of African people,” he said.

“And perhaps had God not sent Africans here,” he continued, “America might have self-destructed by now.

“Don’t you ever compromise your moral or spiritual values for anybody because America needs us,” he refrained.

PHOTO BY JEROLINE D. MCCARTHY/DAYTONA TIMES
Wendy Smith-King, AAEA administrator, and guest Hope Swire-Laws were among the trendsetters at the event.

On our progress

Commenting on wealth, the economy, and on studies, trends, and his book, “Success Runs in Our Race: The Complete Guide to Effective Networking in the African American Community,” Dr. Fraser observed that “after 400 years, we are still the poorest people in this country” and at the bottom of every economic statistic that matters in America.

He asked the audience, “Have we made some progress?”

“Yes,” he replied.

“How does it compare to White people?” he queried.

“There is no comparison,” he verbalized.

Citing a newspaper editorial, he read that: “It is time for African Americans to take a seat at the table – not only in America, but also in a global economy.

“(But) unfortunately, we continue to place our power in the hands of those who have historically oppressed us and even worse, we continue to oppress each other,” the instructor said.

“This is the meaning of internalized oppression”… and thinking that White America controls our lives, is a true application of our personal power, he affirmed, and the reality is that each and every day is an opportunity to create a new and powerful story in our culture.

Color that matters

Briefly and showing respect, Dr. Fraser affirmed that “White people will not be saving Black people.”

Once more, you cannot live in a capitalistic society, and be financially illiterate.

In a capitalistic society, “The only color that matters,” he said, is “green.

“Black people must become a community of owners and savers instead of a community of consumers and renters… and unless things change, that strategy will lead us into a second slavery,” Dr. Fraser warned.

From a stark review released in 1965 by Senator Daniel Patrick Moynihan – commissioned by President Lyndon B. Johnson – Dr. Fraser said that within 40 or 50 years, our out-of-wedlock birth rate will be somewhere between 65 and 75 percent, which will lay the foundation and the structure for intergenerational-and-family community poverty.

The good news

This is exactly what happened, he related, where 72 percent is the out-of-wedlock birth rate of our culture, and we can see the Black family’s destruction.

The good news is, “There is nothing that we’ve done of any significance – as Africans in America – that has not come out of the leadership from the Black church, whether it is our fighting for freedom, civil rights, voting rights, public access, (or against Jim Crow)…

“You cannot pretend that you can begin the process of teaching our people something new, without getting the halo effect and the blessing of the Black church,” Dr. Fraser said.

“It must come through the Black church. It must. Twenty-five hundred references on money and wealth come from the Bible,” he weighed.


As always, remember our prayers for the sick, afflicted, the prodigal son, or daughter, and the bereaved.

Celebrations

Birthday wishes to Barbara Jackson, March 28; Cynthia L. George-Durbin, Shirley Jones, March 29; and Olivia R. Price, April 3.

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