Twenty Black entrepreneurs from across the country will receive funding to advance their young businesses, thanks to Hennessy’s $1-million initiative, “Never Stop Never Settle Society.”
Launched in March 2021, the initiative aims to facilitate authentic growth and a more equitable landscape for Black business owners through funding and resources.
According to an official press release obtained by VIBE, the 20 entrepreneurs—who will also become inaugural members—”were chosen for their commitment to reshaping the world through social impact, increasing representation in otherwise white spaces for Black-owned businesses, and job creation within their communities.”
As members of the “Never Stop Never Settle Society,” each person will receive a $50,000 high-impact fund, opportunities to meet with Moët Hennessy executives for professional development sessions, and a membership to The Gathering Spot Connect—a Black-owned digital community that provides culturally relevant content, networking, and business development resources—in addition to other tools to help grow their businesses and professional development.
“Hennessy believes these candidates are a catalyst to creating change for the future with respect to past models of community-built success,” states the press release.
The 2021 inaugural members of Hennessy’s “Never Stop Never Settle Society” include Miami-born, Georgia-based abstract artist and founder of Abeille Creations, Melissa A. Mitchell and Todd McCrainey Jr., who founded City Press Juice & Bottle, which serves the greater Chicago area with healthy, nutrient-dense cold-pressed juice, superfood blends, and raw foods, made only with organic ingredients.
Dr. Roshawnna Novellus is the founder and CEO of EnrichHER an Atlanta-based organization that seeks to fast-track women and founders of color so that they can take their businesses to new heights. HealHaus founder Darian Hall of Brooklyn hopes to create male-inclusive accessible healing spaces through digital and studio mental health programming. The 36-year-old was inspired to start his company after taking a six-month sabbatical from his work in the medical field to travel, after which he decided to look for his father for the first time in his life. The father and son met in California.
VIBE congratulates all of this year’s “Never Stop Never Settle Society” inaugural members. Below, find the full list of Black entrepreneurs making cultural and money moves:
- Abeille Creations is based in Fairburn, Ga. and established by CEO Melissa Mitchell, a self-taught artist who endeavors to illuminate the Black Art movement through community engagement.
- Annie Admin, is founded by Fort Worth, Texas native Erica Davis and offers a complete virtual office management solution to help manage day-to-day administrative needs.
- City Press Juice & Bottle is a Chicago-based establishment helmed by Todd McCrainey Jr. to provide the healthiest, most nutrient-dense cold-pressed juice by superfood blends and raw food.
- EatOkra Inc., the go-to app for discovering Black-owned restaurants nationwide, was co-created by Brooklyn-based entrepreneur Anthony Edwards Jr.
- EnrichHER connects institutional and retail sources of capital to companies led by women and people of color, founded by gender equality activist Dr. Roshawnna Novellus and based in Atlanta.
- Esquire Branding Agency is led by principal and owner Matthew Harper of Atlanta to deliver top-tier services across event production, creative, and branding.
- Gallerie 88, founded by Alex Davis in Atlanta, is a digital media and lifestyle company that celebrates Black luxury fashion, fine art, and design.
- HealHaus is a Brooklyn-based wellness company established by entrepreneur Darian Hall to provide digital and studio mental health programming.
- Kanarys, Inc. is a Dallas-based technology startup co-founded by Mandy Price that addresses Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) challenges, enabling companies to immediately take action towards systemic change.
- Listen TWO Me is a production company led by CEO George Peters II in Los Angeles with a mission to produce original content and experiences created and consumed by Black audiences around the world.
- Mischo Beauty was founded by Washington-based CEO Kitiya King and focuses on the formulation of the healthiest, safest, and cleanest beauty products.
- Podpal is co-founded by Aaron P. Woods of Alpharetta, Ga. to simplify the production process and help podcast teams plan, publish, and promote their show.
- Quartz Water Source was born out of the Flint water crisis and developed by Flint-native Jonathan Quarles to expand global access to clean water through innovative technology.
- Saint Miles Creative Agency is a creative sanctuary where ideas are actualized. The Jacksonville, Fla.-based award-winning storytelling agency is founded by Enitan Bereola II.
- The Kinship Advisors is a strategic advisory company based in Silver Spring, Md. and was founded by CEO Alexys Feaster. The company advises brands committed to social justice and sustaining impact in underserved communities.
- Soulgood Trinity West is founded by Dallas plant-based visionary Cynthia Nevels to provide opportunity zones across Texas with healthy, organic, and plant-based foods using eco-friendly materials.
- TNT Wangz Tulsa is a food truck known for serving Tulsa, Okla. “the best chicken in the Midwest” and founded by Latia Vann.
- Toasted Life is a San Francisco-based lifestyle-entertainment platform co-founded by Warren Jones to give Black professionals, creatives, and entrepreneurs access to elevated events and experiences.
- WaySlay is an on-demand delivery marketplace created by Miami-based co-founders Michael James and Ian Grant II to deliver beauty supplies directly to consumers’ doorsteps.
- WITH is led by founder Amy Lattimore in Chamblee, Ga. to help underrepresented employees feel seen, valued, and cared for by matching them with wellness support.