August is Black Business Month. Black business owners account for about 10 percent of United States businesses and about 30 percent of all minority owned businesses. According to the United States Census Bureau, that amounts to approximately two million companies owned by African-Americans. Nearly 40 percent of black-owned businesses are in health care and social assistance, repair and maintenance, and personal and laundry services. Other categories include advertising firms, auto dealerships, consulting services, restaurants, barbershops, beauty salons, and more.
Among cities, New York has the most Black owned businesses in the United States followed by Atlanta. The highest ratio of black-owned businesses is in Washington, D.C., where 28% of all businesses are Black owned. The growth of black-owned franchise businesses has been explosive. In 2012, over 30% of franchise businesses were Black owned, up from about 20% five years previous.
In 2012, Joanne "J-Bird" Phillips founded J-Bird Music for the Arts, with the vision of reviving arts programs by providing much needed equipment, instruments, and resources in order to enrich the lives of youths through arts education.
Terry Derkach's music production and writing credits include 3-time Grammy nominated, multi-platinum artist Brad Roberts (Crash Test Dummies), gospel vocalist Vernon Bush (Stevie Wonder, Nancy Wilson, Ray Charles), and Gary Lucas (Jeff Buckley).
Satomi Hofmann is an actress, singer, musician, composer, and arranger living and working in the New York tri-state area. She is currently starring in "The Phantom of the Opera" on Broadway, with the role Wardrobe Mistress/Confidante.
Sarah Dash's first notable appearance was as a member of Patti LaBelle & The Bluebelles. Dash has had a full career, moving from singer, to songwriter and session musician for famous bands that include Labelle, The Rolling Stones, and Keith Richards.