NYC Discussion Conveys Beauty of Black Philanthropy

Ebonie Johnson Cooper posing a question to speaker Christina Lewis Halpern

Ebonie Johnson Cooper posing a question to speaker Christina Lewis Halpern

Ebonie Johnson Cooper is a member of the CIN giving circle Black Benefactors and founder of Friends of Ebonie, a public relations group focused on philanthropy among Black Millennials. Ebonie recently attended a Black Gives Back event in New York City and below is her account of the evening. Photography by Margot Jordan

Giving has long been part of the African American community. On February 28, Black Gives Back celebrated the giving of our community in collaboration with JP Morgan Chase’s Black Organization for Leadership Development (BOLD) and with support from Community Investment Network (CIN).

JPM BGB event photoEchoing the spirit of black philanthropy, CIN board member and sector trailblazer Valaida Fullwood led the audience on a journey through black giving and how its very essence is being permeated throughout communities across the nation. Audience members listened intently as Valaida shared facts about black philanthropy and how impactful our work really is. From The Liberty Hill Foundation in Los Angeles to the Kellogg Foundation’s report on giving by people of color, the presence of blacks in philanthropy is evident.

Celebrated Author and Philanthropist Christina Lewis Halpern, 28 Feb 2013

Celebrated Author and Philanthropist Christina Lewis Halpern, 28 Feb 2013

Once Valaida laid the foundation, the conversation seamlessly shifted to the guest of honor, Christina Lewis Halpern, daughter of self-made billionaire businessman, Reginald F. Lewis. Christina, an accomplished journalist and philanthropist in her own right, shared a candid conversation with Valaida about her journey to success and the anxiety she felt at the top. As Christina read an excerpt from her book, Lonely at the Top, the audience felt with her the feelings of emptiness and discovery that are detailed so well in her memoir. But the conversation wasn’t only about Christina’s hardships.

From l to r: Christal Jackson, Tracey Webb, Ebonie Johnson Cooper and Stacey Trammel at the NYC event, 28 Feb 2013

From l to r: Christal Jackson, Tracey Webb, Ebonie Johnson Cooper and Stacey Trammel at the NYC event, 28 Feb 2013

The conversation between she and Valaida was also about her cultivation as a philanthropist at a very young age. “I’ve been a board member of my family’s foundation since I was 12 years old—well not officially until I was 18—but I learned early the importance of family giving. I’ve also reviewed lots of grants in my life,” she told the audience with a laugh.  Listening first hand to an heiress—a black heiress—I believe was both exciting and awe-inspiring for most of us. It’s not very often we see a young person of color speak with such detail and passion about giving at such a high capacity.

As the discussion ended, the floor opened for questions where the topics spanned from technology and giving to black millennials in philanthropy. It was indeed a conversation at all levels of philanthropy to enjoy.

We all endeavor to make a difference through giving. As we give collectively or individually, remember we are all part of the fabric that makes black philanthropy beautiful.

Advertisements

About valaida

writer. thinker. listener. idea whisperer. traveler. mad word geek. absolute scrabble freak. drinker of life. da*n good friend. ridiculous foodie. imaginative dreamer. afflicted party planner. kind conqueror. okra lover. hillbilly w/ southern roots far-stretched global sights. author of book that reframes portraits of philanthropy. Giving Back: A Tribute to Generations of African American Philanthropists | http://bit.ly/htLxQU
This entry was posted in Events, Member Reflections and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

5 Responses to NYC Discussion Conveys Beauty of Black Philanthropy

  1. valaida says:

    Reblogged this on valaida and commented:

    “It is a responsibility. A seldom-questioned duty.
    A thing of supreme Black beauty.”
    — Ava Wood, from her poem Truth Be Told

  2. Reblogged this on Friends of Ebonie and commented:
    I’ve been blessed to attend so many great events lately that showcase black philanthropy. This one was one of them. It also sparked an interesting conversation I’ll be writing about soon. Stay tuned.

  3. Pingback: Stories about African American philanthropists are important » Naeema's Notes

  4. Arnold says:

    Normally I do not read article on blogs, however I wish to say that this write-up very forced me to
    try and do so! Your writing style has been amazed
    me. Thank you, quite nice post.

  5. auto dealer says:

    Hello There. I discovered your blog the usage of msn.
    This is a really neatly written article. I will be sure to bookmark it and come back to read more of your useful info.
    Thank you for the post. I will certainly comeback.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s