COLUMBIA, S.C. -- The co-founder of the 14th annual National Black Business Month urged 13 Southern states to devote five percent of their local and state pension investments to eradicate concentrated poverty in heavily black rural and urban areas, terming the plan "an economic 13th Amendment."
Speaking to the Richard T. Greener Institute for Social Policy Research, a think tank inspired by the first African-American professor at the University of South Carolina in 1873 and also the catalyst for the construction of Grant's Tomb in New York City, John William Templeton said the funds should invest in their own futures by removing this impediment to growth. Templeton spoke Friday in the Capital City Club, overlooking the South Carolina State Capitol.
The program, moderated by Institute founder Dr. Bruce Cole, CPA, recognized Hartsville manufacturing wizard Jerry Ellison, founder of JBE Inc. 35 years ago, which has grown to 300,000 square feet of manufacturing and warehousing space as a global supply chain provider for companies ranging from BMW to Boeing with an ISO 9000 quality rating.
Templeton said more access to capital can create more industrial firms like Ellison's, one of only 1,000 black manufacturers with employees in the entire country, contrasting his proposals with the 1905 Atlanta Compromise speech by Booker T. Washington
In draft legislation submitted to legislative black caucuses in those states, the "economic 13th Amendment" would require or urge pension funds to prioritize investments in:
1) commercialization of sponsored research from Historically Black Colleges and Minority Serving Institutions
2) supporting tourism and cultural heritage infrastructure along the Gullah Geechee National Cultural Heritage Corridor or the Black Belt
3) enhancing health care and environmental remediation in communities with significant health disparities
4) leveraging one-time windfalls such as the Gulf Spill settlement or sale of the Santee Cooper plant to insure the poorest communities benefit from those opportunities
It is part of the Our10Plan economic strategy to grow black income from six percent of GDP to ten percent which Templeton first articulated to the National Black Caucus of State Legislators in December 2015. He is also a contributor to The Hill, and a member of the leadership team of Black Wealth 2020, a coalition of national leaders focused on growing the number and scale of black businesses, increasing black home ownership by 2 million and raising the assets of black financial institutions to provide the credit for the first two goals.
A statue of Greener, also the first dean of the Howard University School of Law, which eventually defeated the Jim Crow that forced Greener from the University of South Carolina in 1877, is being erected on the University of South Carolina campus.
Donald Trump reported more in bank loans--$335 million--on his financial disclosure than the total of all SBA loans to black businesses in 2010--$332 million. The 14th annual National Black Business Month called for an economic eclipse during BANKBLACK Days Aug. 22-23 to move black bankers in front of much larger sums of capital. blackbusinessmonth.com
"The best civil rights tool is the dollar," co-founder John William Templeton is quoted in The Outline.
On Aug. 31, the 50 Most Important African-Americans in Technology are announced in the Journal of Black Innovation. At last year's Innovation&Equity17 symposium, more than $700 billion worth of institutional investors discussed how to leverage their investments for enhancing economic equality. https://vimeo.com/204588153