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Rev. Jackson to host 25th annual Wall Street Project Economic Summit

Rev. Jesse L. Jackson, Sr., and the Citizenship Education Fund are hosting the 25th Annual Wall Street Project Economic Summit Monday, March 21, through Tuesday, March 22, 2022, at the Sheraton New York Times Square Hotel, 811 7th Ave., Third Floor, in New York, NY, to help increase African American, women and people of color employment and business opportunities.

Monday’s session will be in-person, and Tuesday’s session will be presented virtually. This year’s theme is: “The Wall Street Project 25 Years Later: Many Successes, but Our Work to Level the Playing Field Continues.”

Rev. Jackson made it clear that he wants more qualified African American coaches to be hired. The fight for greater inclusion of Blacks in sports, in companies and in board rooms is why he and the Citizenship Education Fund founded The Wall Street Project in 1996 and launched it on January 25, 1997, on Dr. King’s birthday. Its formation is based on the idea of influencing corporate America through research and education to embrace inclusion as a means of growth.

He admits that this complex formula of success is layered with roadblocks, but the struggle, the multi-tiered fight to open new markets continues as well as the battle to close the digital divide, increase financial literacy and open every room from the mailroom to the boardroom to people of color and women. That fight continues. “We are demanding new markets for our businesspeople,” said Rev. Jackson.

As an example, Rev. Jackson wants companies and sports teams to share the contractual pie with African Americans including hiring more Black coaches, and letting contracts for janitorial and unform clean
ing companies. With a 70 percent Black NFL team, Rev. Jackson thinks it is only fair for

African Americans to be given top level management jobs, legal contracts, and scholarships “for our children.”

“Within American businesses, there exists not a talent gap, but an opportunity gap,” Rev. Jackson said. “To unite talent and opportunity for a business benefit, we established the Rainbow PUSH Wall Street Project, which is an outgrowth of a social justice movement working toward both equal opportunity and protection under the law for all Americans.”

For the past 25 years, the Wall Street Project’s goal has been to advocate for inclusion in the financial marketplace, including urging diversity in hiring practices, promotion of diverse candidates to executive leadership positions and participation of minority-owned firms in financial deal flow.

Rev. Jackson strongly believes that higher levels of inclusive business practices benefit both minority and majority communities. He wants more opportunities in the financial marketplaces and higher levels of minority business participation he says is needed to open the doors for greater economic parity.

This year’s Wall Street Project will host a labor and ministers’ breakfast, a Wall Street Project business luncheon and sessions on utilization of diversity broker-dealers and assets managers, sports, Hip Hop at 50, transforming African economic prospects and much more.

The Wall Street Project Economic Summit will bring together entrepreneurs, corporate executives and some of the nation’s leading policymakers to increase business and employment opportunities for African Americans, women and people of color.

On the first day, the Wall Street Project begins with the labor and ministers’ breakfast, followed by the Wall Street Project’s Impact Then and Now: Expansion and Utilization of Diversity Broker-Dealers and Asset Managers.

John W. Rogers, Jr., chairman, co-CEO and Chief Investment Officer of Ariel Investments, will be one of the distinguished honorees acknowledged during the Wall Street Project business luncheon.

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