SANTA CLARA, CALIF. (PRWEB) SEPTEMBER 01, 2021 -- Major Silicon Valley stakeholders, spearheaded by the African Diaspora Network (ADN), are launching the Accelerating Black Leadership and Entrepreneurship (ABLE) program to accelerate the development of Black entrepreneurs and Black-owned businesses in the U.S.
“Black startups receive only 1% of VC funding. What started out as an idea to change that math has come to life as we welcome 16 highly qualified participants from across the United States to our inaugural ABLE cohort,” said Almaz Negash, Founder and Executive Director of ADN. “We are proud to bring together a diverse ecosystem of corporations, educational institutions, philanthropic organizations, and cross-sector collaborators as partners, funders, and mentors. Working with this diverse ecosystem, we bridge vision and action.”
ADN is the lead organization overseeing development and implementation of ABLE, in partnership with Silicon Valley Executive Center at the Leavey School of Business, Santa Clara University as academic partner; Bill.com as lead funder; Silicon Valley Community Foundation as seed funder; and CA Black Freedom Fund and County of Santa Clara as funding partners.
"Congratulations to the entrepreneurs selected as winners for the inaugural Accelerating Black Leadership and Entrepreneurship program," said René Lacerte, Bill.com CEO and Founder. "Your innovation, dedication and passion reflect the heart of entrepreneurs everywhere, and is exactly why we at Bill.com are excited to support ADN in its mission to empower the African American business community."
"The Leavey School of Business and our Silicon Valley Executive Center are proud to partner with the African Diaspora Network," said Ed Grier, Dean of the Leavey School of Business at Santa Clara University. "We look forward to launching this innovative program focused on racial equity in American entrepreneurship."
The ABLE program will provide online and in-person training and mentorship to the inaugural cohort of 16 Black entrepreneurs representing diverse sectors including education, healthcare, finance, renewable energy, and connectivity, all of which address essential needs of the Black community while spurring sustainable growth.
“African Diaspora Network’s investment in leadership development and mentoring provides a much-needed pathway and pipeline to ensure that Black entrepreneurs will thrive in our new economic reality when we emerge from the pandemic. Seeding African Diaspora Network’s Accelerating Black Leadership and Entrepreneurship program aligns with Silicon Valley Community Foundation’s ongoing commitment to investing in efforts that strengthen communities of color and support the leaders within those communities,” said Nicole Taylor, president and CEO, Silicon Valley Community Foundation.
About African Diaspora Network
African Diaspora Network (ADN) is a registered 501(c)(3) nonprofit membership organization. Our mission is to harness and engage the intellectual, financial, philanthropic and entrepreneurial capacity of Africans and friends of Africa in support of economic and social development across Africa. Since 2010, the African Diaspora Network has energized collaboration among Silicon Valley entrepreneurs, philanthropists and African Diasporans to uplift its local community towards the benefit of Africa. ADN is dedicated to providing virtual and physical forums to accelerate access to resources that foster partnership, knowledge sharing, and advance investment opportunities.