Press Release

NAACP TO ADDRESS MINORITY FRANCHISING AND HOME OWNERSHIP DURING NATIONAL CONVENTION

July 20, 2017

EXPERTS TO DISCUSS EXPANDING ACCESS TO CREDIT AND CAPITAL FOR FRANCHISING AND STRATEGIES FOR INCREASING HOME OWNERSHIP DURING CONVENTION WORKSHOPS

BALTIMORE (July 19, 2017) – The twin pillars of entrepreneurship and home ownership have served as universally accepted vehicles for increasing wealth and economic opportunity in all communities regardless of location or racial identity. This year, during its 108th National Convention in Baltimore, the NAACP will delve into the issue of both expanding access and opportunity for franchising among African Americans as well providing strategies and resources for home ownership during two separate workshops.

Minority Franchising: Challenges and Opportunities will take place on July 25th, 2:30-4:30pm and looks to build upon the NAACP’s 2017 Economic Inclusion Agenda which includes national efforts to spur and support the development of Black business, including minority franchising. Leonard James, III, National Board Member and Chair of the NAACP Economics Committee, will serve as moderator and panelists include: Miriam Brewer, Senior Director of Education and Diversity, International Franchising Association (IFA); Kevin Hicks, Partner, Blackman and Associates; Earsa Jackson, Partner, Strasburger Attorneys at Law; Dr. William Pickard, CEO, Bearwood Management Co.; and Kendal H. Tyre, Nixon Peabody, LLC.

“In terms of advancing the interests of communities of color, business ownership and home ownership remain among the most critical resources,” said Marvin J. Owens, Jr., the NAACP’s Senior Director of Economic Programs.

According to Black Enterprise Magazine’s Franchising: The Numbers Tell the Story- The perks of franchising:

·         Employment growth in the franchise sector will continue to outpace the growth of employment in all businesses economy-wide, as it has in each of the last five years. Franchise employment is expected to increase 3.1% in 2016, while total, private, non-farm employment will increase 1.9%.

·         Over the six-year period, 2011-2016, average annual job growth in the franchise sector, at 2.7%, will be 0.5 percentage points higher than for all businesses economy-wide (IFA 2016).

·         U.S. franchisees added 20,000 new jobs in January 2016, and remained at double the pace of the labor market overall for the past twelve months (ADP National Franchise Report).

The Wells Fargo Housing Workshop will occur on Tuesday, July 25 from 2:30-4:430pm and look to identify methods for overcoming barriers to home ownership as well as an overview of the current economic climate of the housing market and the best ways to pursue the dream of home ownership during these times. The Housing Workshop will include voices from the National Urban League, HomeFree USA, The National Association of Real Estate Brokers, Wells Fargo, and the NAACP Housing Committee.

Experts slated to attend the workshop are:

  • Gigi Dixon, Wells Fargo Senior Vice President
  • Rob Robertson, Regional Manager, Wells Fargo Home Mortgage
  • Milan Griffin,  HomeFreeUSA
  • Gary Bledsoe, President, Texas NAACP
  • Cy Richardson, Senior Vice President, Economics and Housing Programs, National Urban League
  • Mark Vitner, Senior Economist,  Wells Fargo Securities
  • Antoine Thompson, Executive Director, National Association of Real Estate Brokers

 

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ABOUT THE NAACP:

Founded in 1909, the NAACP is the nation’s oldest and largest nonpartisan civil rights organization. Its members throughout the United States and the world are the premier advocates for civil rights in their communities. You can read more about the NAACP’s work and our six “Game Changer” issue areas by visiting NAACP.org.

More about the NAACP’s 108th Annual Convention 

Other highlights will include the NAACP ACT-SO (Academic, Cultural, Technical and Scientific Olympics) final competition and awards, the highly anticipated Freedom Fund Banquet, a retail expo, veterans’ luncheon, and a diversity career fair.

Media Credentials

Members of the press who would like to attend and cover the 108th Annual NAACP National Convention in Baltimore, Maryland, must register for press credentials. Beginning Friday, July 21st, please visit the Communications Office, located in room 339 of the Baltimore Convention Center and open daily 9am to 6pm, to obtain your press pass.