Episode seven of season two of SOCAP’s podcast series, Money + Meaning: Unlikely Allies Building New Markets for Impact is now available!
Episode 2.7: Recorded Live at SOCAP 365 PNW – Accelerating the Impact Ecosystem
“The system is set up in such up a way that it is going to disadvantage the populations of people that have always been disadvantaged. So one thing isn’t going to change that because the system is going to adapt to it. So you, the person who really wants to change this, you have to be all in.” – Sayer Jones
On this week’s episode of Money + Meaning, recorded live at SOCAP 365 PNW event in Seattle, you’ll hear Sayer Jones, Lisa Yancey, and Stephen Green in a candid conversation about what it will take to close the racial wealth gap. Each panelist shares their own experiences working to increase financing and support for entrepreneurs of color, as well as stories of the barriers they have encountered along the way and concrete examples of the bias in our current system.
Green notes that in his home state of Oregon, despite the fact that the numbers of Black founders have doubled in the last decade to over 5000 businesses, those firms have received less than 1% of equity funding. Nationally, Black and female led firms receive less than .1% of venture capital funding. Hidden in these “stark numbers,” Green sees “amazing opportunity.”
Building on Green’s point, Yancey suggested a frame for looking at the racial wealth gap, “it’s intersectional, it’s complex, it’s structural, but it’s not intractable.” More than merely seeing the opportunity to solve this challenge, Yancey urges that members of privileged groups should also recognize their obligation to be part of the solution–even when it is personally uncomfortable. “You don’t get let off the hook…You’re not going to change the status quo feeling status quo comfort,” she said.
Jones later added, “If, as an investor, you are afraid of being uncomfortable…imagine how hard it is to actually be an entrepreneur out there trying to get capital–to get turned away from 75 capital sources and to have to internalize that probably the reason that their company is not successful is because of something that they had no control over. It wasn’t their balance sheet, it wasn’t their collateral, it was the color of their skin…I think in order to do this work you have to be uncomfortable.”
To hear the full conversation, and their suggestions for participating in meaningful systemic change, listen to the latest episode of Money + Meaning.
Host: Alex Kravitz
About Money + Meaning
Money + Meaning is the official podcast of SOCAP. This series aims to expand the conversation around impact investing and strategies to finance and support social change while stimulating innovative and valuable new partnerships across sectors.
Continue the Conversation at SPECTRUM in Atlanta
To add your voice to this vital conversation, come to SPECTRUM–a multicultural gathering of changemakers focused on access, inclusion, and impact for business leaders and entrepreneurs of color happening at The Gathering Spot in Atlanta, GA on June 12 and 13, 2019. SPECTRUM is a joint production of SOCAP and Conscious Company Media, with support from W.K.Kellogg Foundation.