We’re Celebrating National Black Business Month the RICE Way!

It’s National Black Business Month at the Russell Innovation Center for Entrepreneurs starting this August 1st, 2023! This marks the beginning of a month-long celebration dedicated to empowering and uplifting RICE Stakeholders and Atlanta’s Black business owners. When we say we’re Celebrating Black Business the RICE Way this is what we mean:

  • Intentionally spending with RICE Stakeholders (with over $19M circulated so far)
  • Meeting every entrepreneur where they are with educational resources
  • Providing resources for Black entrepreneurs whether they are Stakeholders or not
  • Intentionally creating a unique environment concentrating the best resources available to entrepreneurs and growing businesses
  • Creating a space of belonging and nurturing entrepreneurial confidence for Black entrepreneurs

At the Russell Innovation Center, we believe in the power of entrepreneurship and the immense potential it holds for OUR community. As part of our commitment to fostering growth and success for our Stakeholders, we have curated a limited YouTube series called Black Business Talks, a new partnership with Davis Broadcasting, Inc. on Smooth Jazz 101/100 Sundays at 11, along with events and networking opportunities throughout the month of August.

First, we are kicking the month off with our biggest Black Friday yet! We will have over 30 vendors, games, prizes, and live music from Erica Dawson Exclusive. Invite your friends, family, colleagues and customers to bring out their lawn chairs to enjoy a fun time on August 4th at 5 PM. Register to attend Black Friday here.

Second, show your RICE pride and say Happy National Black Business Month to the world with a custom social media profile frame. We’ve created a custom design in Canva for you to update your Facebook, Instagram, and LinkedIn profile photos. Get your frame at tinyurl.com/RICENBBMFrame

Finally, watch and share the new limited series “Black Business Talks” produced by Just Eldridge, hosted by Ashley Scott & Mike Cortez on the RICE YouTube channel. Be sure to subscribe and turn on notifications so that you can be the first to know when a new episode drops each day during August for National Black Business Month. Subscribe and watch here

We’re excited for you to join us in “Celebrating Black Business the RICE Way!”

Terri-Nichelle Bradley

Terri-Nichelle Bradley is the Founder and CEO of Play at Brown Toy Box. Bradley believes that Black children should see themselves positively represented in every space the experience regularly, starting with their toybox and the toy aisle. Bradley, an equity in play advocate, is on a mission to disrupt the $27B toy industry by creating a brand that reflects the world we live in today. Launched in 2017 as a STEAM kit, Brown Toy Box evolved into a full-scale educational toy company producing and curating STEAM toys, media, and experiences for centering and celebrating Black children in a manner all children can enjoy, learn, and have fun. Prior to starting Brown Toy Box, Bradley led a communications consultancy working with Fortune 500 companies in campaigns designed to connect with the African American community. Prior to that, Bradley served as the VP of Corporate, Crisis, and Public Affairs for the world’s largest global PR agency. Bradley has been awarded the Civic Impact Award, was recognized as a 2019 Atlanta’s Top 100 Businesswomen of Influence by the Atlanta Business League, acknowledged on the 2020 Who’s Who in Black Atlanta list of influential leaders and most recently named to Inc. Magazine’s 2020 Female Founders 100 list. Brown Toy Box is sold in Target stores nationwide, with Amazon, over 30 museums including the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History & Culture, as well as other independent specialty toy stores and retailers. Learn more at browntoybox.com

Stefan Miller

Stefan Miller is the Co-Founder and CMO for Young King Hair Care, which launched in December 2019. Young King Hair Care is a multicultural grooming and lifestyle brand company with tailored offerings catering to specific needs of young men of color. Stefan is a marketing professional with 15+ years of experience across marketing, sales and consulting in the CPG and tech industries. At Young King, Stefan has been featured in over 75+ national publications, was recognized by Mintel as one of the top US brand innovations of 2021, partnered with Disney and Marvel Studios for Black Panther: Wakanda Forever, and was a participant on Season 13 of ABC’s Shark Tank. Currently Young King Hair Care is available in multiple retail partners, including Target, Walmart, and CVS, selling in over 3,000 stores across the US. Prior to founding Young King Hair Care, he led business strategy and marketing communications, while launching innovations across multiple billion-dollar brands and categories at IBM, Johnson & Johnson, General Mills, Coca-Cola, and Red Bull. Stefan L. Miller Bio Stefan holds an MBA from Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University with concentrations in Brand Marketing, Media Management and Management in Organizations, and is a proud HBCU alum of Morehouse College with a BA in Business Administration. He currently lives with his wife and co-founder Cora and 2 kids, Kade and Cree in Atlanta, Georgia. Learn more at youngkinghaircare.com

Ceata E. Lash

Ceata E. Lash, CEO and founder of PuffCuff has emerged as a pioneering figure in the natural hair accessory industry, holding the distinction of being the first African-American woman to secure four US patents in this domain. Her journey to entrepreneurship was built upon a 30-year career as a graphic designer, which laid the foundation for launching PuffCuff in 2013. Ceata’s innovative leadership has earned her prestigious accolades, including the President’s Innovation Award from Sally Beauty and the New Voices + Barefoot Wine Beauty Business Grant. These achievements have placed her among the top female founders featured in Inc. Magazine. Committed to lifelong learning and growth, Ceata has completed the Goldman Sachs 10K Small Businesses National Cohort and was part of the inaugural Amazon Black Business Accelerator Cohort. Her recent completion of the “Building a Successful Diverse Business” program at Tuck Executive Education, Dartmouth, further underscores her dedication to continuous improvement and leadership in the business world. Learn more at thepuffcuff.com