Women In Music Unveil 2020 Global Event Series, Announce Diversity & Inclusion Council

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Chissy Nkemere, a mentor for the Women In Music Mentorship Program.
Women In Music is expanding in 2020 with a global event series across eight countries and 10 cities within the U.S.

The non-profit organization, which aims to help educate women in the music industry as well as open conversations and offer resources worldwide, will host WIM industry conference events in Barbados, Brazil, Colombia, Canada, India, Japan, UK, and across the U.S. in cities including Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, Cleveland, Los Angeles, Miami, Nashville, New York, Portland and Washington DC.

Additionally, WIM aims to prioritize its Diversity and Inclusion Council as part of its WIM 50/50 program by inviting speakers and performers with diverse perspectives at conferences.

Tierra Whack photographed at the 2018 Women in Music awards on Dec. 6, 2018 in New York. 

The organization also announced its Diversity & Inclusion Council, which includes chairman Chissy Nkemere (Concord), Nikisha Bailey (Atlantic Records), Mayna Nevarez (Nevarez PR), and Sonja Kim (Pandora). The council will include male members in an effort to create an inclusive music community with Jeff Hammer (Northwestern Mutual), Michael Adams Jr., (Asylum Records) and Nick Maiale (Music Business Association) joining as well.   

“Our goal in creating the Diversity & Inclusion Council at Women In Music is to make sure we are being intentional in all of our work, and to meet the needs of underrepresented groups that too often go unaddressed under the larger gender equity umbrella,” says Nicole Barsalona, president of Women In Music.

“We want to open up the conversation in a real and impactful way – for women of color, for the LGBTQ community, for our male allies, and more – to create a safer, more inclusive and more equitable music industry for all. I can’t think of anyone better than Chissy to lead the way. I know she’ll be a powerful and inspiring voice for our members and partners.”


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Zozibini Tunzi Is the New Miss Universe. Stop Calling Her a ‘Diversity Win’

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“I grew up in a world where a woman who looks like me — with my kind of skin and my kind of hair — was never considered to be beautiful,” said new Miss Universe Zozibini Tunzi during her final remarks at the 2019 pageant. Tunzi appeared at the event held in Atlanta, Georgia, over the weekend, representing South Africa. And she wanted to make it clear: “I think it is time that that stops. I want children to look at me and see my face and I want them to see their faces reflected in mine.”

Tunzi went on to capture the crown, beating out Miss Puerto Rico and Miss Mexico, who were first- and second-runner-up.

And with Tunzi’s win, for the first time ever, Miss Universe, Miss USA, Miss Teen USA, and Miss America are all Black women.

When I competed in the Miss Universe Organization (in the Miss New York USA pageant), I was well aware of the competition’s historical shortcomings. Before Miss USA Chelsie Kryst’s win, it was very rare to see a Black woman or woman of color wear her hair naturally curly or kinky for competition. Tunzi, with her closely cropped hair, has broken yet another beauty barrier in the pageant industry.

But while Tunzi’s historic win has been receiving mostly positive attention in mainstream media, in the pageant world, there is an undercurrent of cynicism about her victory. On the Bubble Board, one of the most popular forums for pageant fans to discuss and dissect the Miss Universe, Miss USA, and Miss Teen USA pageants, the popular sentiment is that she is just another “diversity win.”

“3 black winners and all questionable. Actually 4 black winners if you include Miss America. I am black but I am sick and tired of Diversity,” one commenter wrote. “No one cares. I could care less that you are bald headed. That is by choice! I do not want to hear sob stories. I do not care that you are a champion of gay rights. This is ridiculous!” (read more)

Wall Street says it cares about diversity. But most big banks won’t share complete workforce data.

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Allison Gamba spent 10 years at Goldman Sachs gunning for a promotion to managing director. She said she worked long days and significantly increased the profits from the stocks she traded for the bank on the New York Stock Exchange.

Gamba made a point of telling co-workers she didn’t want children, she said, hoping to avoid the perception she was on the “mommy track” rather than the “promotion track.” Then a mentor pulled her aside and suggested she and her husband adopt a child to allay any fears that she would be distracted by a pregnancy.

“It was a very uncomfortable feeling. I knew he really liked me, and I think he was just warning me,” she said.

After leaving Wall Street, Gamba joined thousands of current and former female employees suing Goldman Sachs for gender discrimination in a long-running lawsuit. Goldman Sachs has denied the lawsuit’s allegations, and said in a statement that Gamba’s business unit was “performing poorly and undergoing extensive downsizing.”

For years, Wall Street has promised to bring more women and people of color into its upper ranks, but none of the country’s largest banks — those with at least $200 billion in assets — is headed by a woman or a person of color.

And only two of the 15 biggest banks in the country — TD Bank and BNY Mellon — agreed to publicly disclose their most recent government diversity reports in response to a request from The Washington Post.

“It’s going to take a lot for them to actually change. You have to fix the past to deal with the future,” Gamba said.

All of the banks already submit the workforce diversity data requested by The Post to the federal government each year through two-page forms known as EEO-1s. Companies with 100 or more employees are required to submit the forms each year, showing a breakdown of their U.S. workforce by race and gender across 10 job categories. The forms do not identify workers by name or contain trade secrets.

The data the industry does share with the public shows slow progress:

  • At JPMorgan Chase, the country’s largest bank, with $2.7 trillion in assets, women and African Americans made up 25.8 percent and 2.9 percent respectively of senior executives in 2015, rising to 26.3 percent and 3.7 percent last year.
  • In a yearly report, Wells Fargo, which has nearly $2 trillion in assets, told shareholders that women and minorities at “levels 2-4” had reached 41 percent and 19 percent of its workforce, respectively. The categories aren’t explained, and Wells Fargo didn’t offer more insight into its racial makeup. At The Post’s request, it released percentages but not the raw data it reports to the government. The data shows that women made up 24 percent of the bank’s senior workforce in 2015, rising to 31 percent last year. Black employees made up 8 percent of senior roles, falling to 4.1 percent in 2018.
  • At TD Bank, one of two banks to share its full EEO-1 reports for the three most recent years, there was one black woman among 72 senior executives in 2015. There were no black women in its top ranks last year out of 42 senior executives overall.
  • BNY Mellon, which has $1.7 trillion in assets, has released its full EEO-1 reports for the past few years. In 2018, the data showed BNY’s U.S. executive tier, made up of 14 people, was all white, except for one Asian man. The bank has since added two black executives.
  • Capital One has made bigger improvements in promoting Hispanic and Asian employees into top roles than black employees, who were 2.4 percent of senior executives in 2016 and 2.6 percent last year.
  • BB&T released data about its workforce diversity for the first time in 2019, showing that 8 percent of executives and senior managers are “persons of color,” but did not release its EEO-1 report to The Post. (Regulators approved its $66 billion merger with SunTrust last month, creating the country’s sixth-largest bank, with more than $400 billion in assets.)
  • SunTrust also only provided vague information, showing that 18 percent of executives and senior managers were people of color in 2017, increasing to 19.2 percent last year.
  • Bank of America publishes EEO-1 data for its three top job categories, as well as “all other” and “total” figures. The data show slight improvements across most major racial groups and women in the United States at its highest ranks. The percentage of female executives ticked up slightly, from 31.3 percent in 2016 to 33.4 percent in 2018.
  • At Morgan Stanley, the share of female executives in its U.S. workforce dipped from 18.4 percent in 2016 to 17.8 percent in 2018, while the share of black executives rose from 1.9 percent to 2.2 percent.(read more)

Stop policing black women’s hair

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Actress Gabrielle Union has caused a stir with accusations that NBC fired her from “America’s Got Talent” because she exposed their racist ways.

The conversation turned to hair this week after her stylist released a video showcasing the various styles he has created with the actress’ tresses during her stint on the show. Various news reports allege that producers said Ms. Union’s hair was “too black.”

No question the styles were authentically black. They were also unquestionably beautiful. A fluffy ponytail cascading down her back like a stretched out piece of cotton, twisted coils piled on top of her head like mini sculptures, poofy curls that framed her face like a lion’s mane and cornrows.

If the allegations are true, NBC producers would not be the first to police a black woman’s hair. Not by a long shot. Too many white Americans are obsessed with black hair. If it’s not fried straight with chemicals or a flat iron it somehow isn’t appropriate.

More insulting is when the styles are accepted when culturally appropriated, like when a national fashion magazine gave the Kardashians credit for making cornrows trendy.

 

Why can’t people just leave black women’s hair alone? Women shouldn’t be ridiculed for what grows naturally out of their head. Not only is it frustrating and insulting, but discriminatory and built off European standards of beauty.

Yet, just about every black woman has experienced the awkward questions about their hair. Actress Halle Barry’s close-cropped , pixie hairstyle became iconic in the ’90s and copied by black women everywhere. But she said she chose the style not to become a trendsetter, but because there were no Hollywood hairdressers who could style her. Black women were essentially invisible.

“That’s why I had short hair. [Maintaining] it was easy,” she told NBC. “I think as people of color, especially in the business, we haven’t always had people that know how to manage our hair.”

 

We’ve all heard the stories about schools that kick out students for wearing dreads or braids. Remember the referee in New Jersey who said a student had to cut off his dreads or forfeit a match? And what about the people who have lost their jobs because their hairstyles weren’t acceptable? But who decides what is acceptable?

Discriminatory hair experiences can be emotionally taxing and cause people to question their worth. This is especially problematic for children still trying to find their identity. The price tag is high for those who try to conform rather than embrace their natural hair. Black consumers spent $473 million on hair in 2017, according to Nielsen. Can we also talk about the time it takes to get straight locks? Black women spend way too much of their weekends sitting in hair salons.

The good thing is black women are starting to push back and tune out the naysayers. Just look at the news anchors who have traded their bone-straight tresses for textured styles. The trend is notable given the beauty restrictions often required by television stations. Ever notice how anchors look like clones of one another?

 

Janai Norman, co-anchor of ABC News’ “World News Now” and an ABC News correspondent, is one who has bucked the trend. In a recent blog post she wrote that “to free my curls, I first had to free my mind.” Ms. Norman used to straighten her hair, but is now seen on air with a head full of curls. It is a welcome sight and a brave move. We know that viewers can be unforgiving — and sometimes racist — in their criticism.

“For nearly 30 years, I was conditioned by a standard of beauty that left me out,” she said. “I was not included. TV, magazines, society — by omission — told me I was not beautiful, my hair needed to be bone straight, my eyes blue or green, my skin fair and I didn’t make the cut.”

 

Several lawsuits have made the issue one of civil rights and also brought the problem of hair discrimination to a head. Jurisdictions across the country are also adopting laws to ban hair discrimination. In Maryland, Montgomery County passed legislation last month that prohibits discrimination against natural hairstyles, including “braids, locks, Afros, curls and twists.” Businesses and others can be fined up to $5,000 for violating the law.

California and New York have passed similar laws and other places have pending legislation.

In a fairer world, these kinds of laws would seem silly and people would see that beauty comes in all forms. I, for one, love black women who change their hair like chameleons. I can’t wait to see what Ms. Union has for us next.

Byron Allen Rips Comcast Now That Diversity Chief David Cohen Is “Out Of The Way”

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Byron Allen, who has been locked in a legal dispute with Comcast that has reached all the way to the Supreme Court, didn’t mince words in his response to the company’s latest executive shuffle.

David Cohen, who has steered Comcast’s diversity efforts and faced blame from Allen and others who say the company mistreated minority-owned cable networks, announced he will exit his operational role by January 1. In 2020, he will serve as an adviser to CEO Brian Roberts.

“With David Cohen out of the way, this is a pivotal moment in the history and legacy of Comcast and Brian Roberts,” Allen said in a statement. “Mr. Roberts and the Comcast board of directors should immediately rescind their petition in the U.S. Supreme Court challenging the civil rights of over 100 million Americans and sit down with staunch critics of Comcast/NBCUniversal.”

Along with himself, Allen recited a roll call of names on that list of critics, including Robert Rodriguez, Sean Diddy Combs, U.S. Senators Kamala Harris, Richard Blumenthal, Cory Booker and Ron Wyden, the NAACP and Gabrielle Union.

Allen said he hopes further discussions can help “resolve the systemic and horrific racial issues at Comcast/NBCUniversal. With all of us working together, we can truly make this better for millions of Americans and Comcast/NBCUniversal.”

The Supreme Court last month heard arguments in the $20 billion discrimination suit filed by Allen, who contends that the cable and media giant under-funded and generally discriminated against channels run by and serving minority communities. Allen, through his National Association of African American Owned Media, had sought carriage of channels like JusticeCentral.TV, Pets.TV and Recipe.TV. Networks such as Combs’ Revolt and Rodriguez’s El Rey did go live several years ago on Comcast and other systems, but their principals have recently aligned themselves publicly with Allen.

Comcast did not have any immediate response to Allen’s statement. We will update the post if they do.

Comcast’s David Cohen, Diversity Exec And Adviser To Brian Roberts, Stepping Down

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David Cohen, a key adviser to Comcast CEO Brian Roberts and a notable fundraiser for Democratic presidential hopeful Joe Biden, has announced his plan to step down from his operational role at the company.

He will end his operational responsibilities as of January 1, 2020, transitioning from Senior EVP to Senior Counselor to Roberts starting December 31, 2020.

In recent years, Cohen has led Comcast’s diversity efforts and also guided its lobbying troops in Washington. He also has been involved in Byron Allen’s discrimination lawsuit against Comcast, which is now before the Supreme Court. (Allen issued a not-terribly-cordial statement about Cohen’s exit, urging Roberts and the company to alter their stance now that Cohen is “out of the way.”)

Cohen’s purview is broad, spanning corporate functions such as communications, public policy, regulatory and government affairs, lobbying, real estate, security. In a memo to employees announcing the move, Roberts announced the new division of responsibilities across various areas of the company. (Read the memo below.) Karen Buchholz will become Chief Diversity Officer of Comcast, reporting to Roberts in this capacity. Buchholz and Craig Robinson, the Chief Diversity Officer for NBCUniversal, will
become co-chairs of the Comcast NBCUniversal Joint Diversity Advisory Council.

Comcast has employed more lobbyists in Washington that virtually any other company in America. Those forces were put to the test in 2014 when the company made an unsuccessful bid to acquire Time Warner Cable, a proposed merger that was abandoned when regulators raised monopoly concerns. Time Warner Cable wound up being acquired by Charter Communications, which vaulted to the No. 2 position among cable operators behind Comcast.

Beyond any individual deal, Cohen has been regularly involved at a high level in major industry conversations around net neutrality, broadcast spectrum and other aspects of the media landscape.

In a statement, Roberts said it is “impossible to overstate David’s value to Comcast NBCUniversal,” adding that his “passion for diversity and inclusion has helped transform our company and our industry.”

Cohen joined Comcast in 2002 after a stint as partner and chairman at the Ballard Spahr law firm. He has also been chief of staff to former Philadelphia Mayor Ed Rendell. In political circles, Cohen has been a prominent Biden supporter, throwing the first major fundraiser for the vice president as soon as he announced his 2020 candidacy.

Cohen issued a statement indicating the time had come for a change. (He will turn 65 next year.) “It has been extraordinary to work with Brian and our senior leadership team for the past 18 years to help grow Comcast into one of the largest media and technology companies in the world,” he said. “After a great deal of discussion with Brian and after much thought, I’ve decided to transition my operational roles and make way for the many talented executives who I have had the privilege of working with at Comcast and provide the opportunity to lead and grow their careers.”

Here is the memo from Roberts to employees: (read more)

Lupita Nyong’o Gets Real About Diversity In Hollywood

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“I am benefiting from the efforts of a lot of other Black women who have had it a lot rougher than I have.”

Much has changed in Hollywood in recent years, from #MeToo to a roster of films showcasing diverse narratives, and Lupita Nyong’o is well aware of her place in contemporary cinema.

She joined AwkwafinaLaura DernScarlett JohanssonJennifer Lopez and Renée Zellweger for The Hollywood Reporter’s annual actress roundtable discussion, which was published on Wednesday (November 13). The wide-ranging conversation touched on gender, diversity and imposter syndrome. Listen in:

Nyong’o: This #MeToo time, this Time’s Up time in the industry, is about allowing for equitable representation. And because I am a Black woman, I am a beneficiary of that movement in the work that I’ve been able to do. I’m very grateful to have come into the industry at the time that I have because I am benefiting from the efforts of a lot of other women who have come before me, other Black women who have had it a lot rougher than I have. This is a time where there is a concerted effort to consider diversity and inclusion. What I really want is for it to not be a fad, not be a trend. Right now it’s really dope and cool and on trend to work with women and underrepresented groups, but the moment of maturity in the industry is when it is just the norm, you know?

Lopez: Right. When I first started, one of the things that I wanted to do, because I was Puerto Rican, Latina, was that I wanted to be in romantic comedies because I felt like all the women in romantic comedies always looked the same way, they were always White. And I was like, if I can do it and just show that I’m every girl—because I am the hopeless romantic, I am that—I am the single working woman, I was those things. And I remember thinking, I need to be the lead in a romantic comedy. And that’s one of the things I went for and that’s one of the things me and my agents talked about.

Nyong’o: That’s the thing—when the race of the person in the romantic comedy is not the point. There are moments when the cultural group or the religious group or the national group is the subject matter, and there are moments when it’s not, and both are radical, you know? So like with Jordan in the horror genre, not often do you have Black characters in the fore. So he is revolutionizing that genre—that Black people don’t die first in his films. And [race] is really not the point. What is the point is that it’s an examination of class and privilege. The family that we are following is representational of the all-American family. And that you can relate to that person just as much as I related to Fräulein Maria in “The Sound of Music.” That it is possible that we can see ourselves in the people who are different from us, from other cultures, other creeds.

To hear more from Nyong’o on diversity and inclusion, watch the video below, courtesy of THR:


 

#TEC19: HOW DIVERSITY AND INCLUSION POWER TECH INNOVATION

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ASAE’s 2019 Technology Exploration Conference kicked off on Tuesday with a conversation focused on the value of diversity, inclusion, and human interactions in fueling future tech innovations.

Artificial intelligence, autonomous vehicles, blockchain, and the internet of things—these are the technology trends shaping our digital future. But without a diverse talent pool and meaningful human interactions, organizations of all types, including associations, will fall behind amid so much dynamic change.

That was the message from Consumer Technology Association (CTA) President and CEO Gary Shapiro in a keynote session opening the 2019 ASAE Technology Exploration Conference in Washington, DC, Tuesday morning. “Real innovation is the process by which we solve fundamental problems that we as humans will face,” Shapiro said. “I believe our future battles will be about technology, but the winners will come from a group of diverse and innovative thinkers committed to improving the human condition.”

That theme was echoed by keynote moderator Sherrell Dorsey, founder and CEO of ThePLUG, a digital publication that covers tech founders, innovators, and investors of color.

“When I think of diversity, I think of all my tech mentors who came from different races and backgrounds,” Dorsey said. “It has painted my worldview of what technology is, and it taught me how to look at a challenge and solve it.”

BUILD BRIDGES, NOT WALLS

On a global scale, Shapiro said, many of today’s leaders are focused on building walls—both literal and symbolic—when instead they should be building bridges to enable collaboration.

“We’re seeing isolationism emerge, and it’s a world which is cleaving right now,” he said. “I think associations can be a force to build community and construct real human progress and innovation.”

But doing that requires a diverse group of people who can be “designers of their own digital experience,” Dorsey said. She suggested that one way associations can do this is to host hackathon-style events, which bring together many different people for hours or days of problem solving around a specific technology issue.

“I think that can also help associations rethink whether certain technologies or practices are inclusionary or exclusionary,” Dorsey added. “Take data collection, as an example. Often you have to ask yourself: “Who or what’s missing?” Because certain groups may go hidden in an association.”

CREATE DIVERSE TEAMS

Increasing diversity—asking “Who’s missing?”—also matters in workforce development and hiring practices, especially in critical technology positions. “We need diverse teams if we want to adopt a culture of innovation,” Shapiro said. “That means hiring and developing a team that thinks differently from you.”

He noted that many technology companies have lagged in recruiting and promoting women and people of color, which is why CTA sets aside funding to help its members hire workers from underrepresented groups. And earlier this year, CTA announced new D+I initiatives for its annual Consumer Electronics Show, including an “Innovation for All” presentation track and a grant-funded program for women and other underrepresented entrepreneurs who can exhibit for free in a designated startup space.

“You have to reach out to different people and move away from your comfort zone,” Shapiro said. “I think diversity and inclusion is a continuous process where you always need to be working toward steady improvements.”

Democrats call out lack of diversity in 2020 race after Harris’ exit

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Leading Democrats including presidential candidates Sen. Cory Booker (D-N.J.) and former HUD Secretary Julián Castro spoke out against an increasing lack of diversity in the 2020 race following the exit of Sen. Kamala Harris (D-Calif.) Tuesday.

Cory Booker

@CoryBooker

We started with one of the most diverse fields in our history. It’s a damn shame that the only African American woman in this race is no longer in it, and we’re spiraling toward a debate stage without a single person of color.

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Why it matters: The six candidates who’ve qualified for the upcoming debate are all white: former Vice President Joe Biden, South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg, Sens. Bernie Sanders, (I-Vt.), Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.) and billionaire Tom Steyer.

  • Booker noted on MSNBC that the Democratic race is “spiraling towards” a December debate that “could have six people with no diversity whatsoever.”

The big picture: Harris had qualified for the next debate, but she bowed out after struggling in recent polls. The other candidates of color have yet to meet Democratic National Committee debate requirements. Candidates have until Dec. 12 to qualify.

  • Fox News notes businessman Andrew Yang and Rep. Tulsi Gabbard (D-Hawaii) met the donor threshold qualification “but have yet to meet the polling requirement.”
  • Neither Booker nor Castro have qualified met the requirements so far.

What they’re saying: Several liberal activists and progressive groups have spoken out on the lack of diversity in the Democrats’ race now.

  • Democratic strategist Michael Starr Hopkins told Fox News the DNC “thought it would help progressives” with its new requirements, “but it ended up hurting campaigns like Harris, Booker, and Castro. “Instead of focusing on building infrastructure, they had to spend insane amounts on donor lists to get on the debate stage,” he said.
  • Castro told BuzzFeed the media had held Harris to a double standard because candidates of color are treated differently. He also addressed the DNC debate’s diversity issue in a video posted to Twitter.

Sawyer Hackett

@SawyerHackett

With @KamalaHarris out, the debate stage is now all white. @JulianCastro responds:

“What we’re staring at is a DNC debate stage with no people of color on it. That does not reflect the diversity of our party or our country. We need to do better than that.”

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Diversity-focused VC fund Harlem Capital debuts with $40M

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Harlem Capital has upgraded from angel syndicate to full-fledged venture capital fund, closing its debut effort on an oversubscribed $40.3 million.

The firm was launched by managing partners Henri Pierre-Jacques and Jarrid Tingle in New York City’s Harlem neighborhood in 2015. The pair have since graduated from Harvard Business School  and hired two venture partners, Brandon Bryant and John Henry, and two senior associates to help expand their portfolio. The over-arching goal: invest in 1,000 diverse founders over the next 20 years.

“We fundamentally believe we are a venture fund with impact, not an impact fund,” Pierre-Jacques tells TechCrunch. “The way we generate impact is to give women and minority entrepreneurs ownership.”

Capital from Harlem Capital Partners Venture Fund I, an industry-agnostic vehicle that invests in post-revenue businesses across the U.S., will be used to lead, co-lead or participate in $250,000 to $1 million-sized seed or Series A financings. To date, the team has backed 14 companies, including B2B feminine hygiene product Aunt Flow, gig economy marketplace Jobble and pet wellness platform Wagmo. Harlem Capital plans to add another 22 businesses to Fund 1.

You need diversity funds like ourselves to get this market anywhere close to parity.Harlem Capital managing partner Jarrid Tingle

With its first fund close, Harlem Capital becomes one of the largest venture capital funds with a diversity mandate. Despite an increasing amount of punishing data exposing the gender and race gap in venture capital, minority founders continue to rake in just a small percentage of funding each year. According to a RateMyInvestor and Diversity VC report released earlier this year, most VC dollars are invested in companies run by white men with a university degree. Other recent data indicates startups founded exclusively by women raised just 2.2% of overall VC funding in 2018, with numbers on pace to increase only slightly in 2019. Meanwhile, the median amount of funding raised by black female founders, as of 2018, was $0.

The stark contrast in funding for female versus male entrepreneurs or white women versus black women founders is in part a result of a lack of diversity amongst general partners at venture capital funds and amongst the limited partners that choose which venture capital funds to provide capital. While there’s little data available on diversity of LPs, 81% of VC firms didn’t have a single black investor as of 2018.

“There’s no rational reason why this problem exists,” Tingle tells TechCrunch. “It persists because VC funds in general have been closely held and clustered around Silicon Valley. They come from particular schools with particular networks with a small head count that doesn’t turn over frequently. Some firms have strategically added a few partners here and there, but not enough to change the organization. You need diversity funds like ourselves to get this market anywhere close to parity.”

“A lot of investors are frankly missing out on opportunities,” Tingle adds.

Having met through the Management Leadership for Tomorrow Program, a nonprofit organization identifying a new generation of leadership, Tingle and Pierre-Jacques have built a prolific internship program at the firm. With as many as six interns admitted each quarter, the goal is to train future investors of color.

Limited partners in Harlem Capital Partners Fund I include TPG Global, State of Michigan Retirement Systems, the Consumer Technology Association and Dorm Room Fund .

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