First Minority Business Hall of Fame and Museum Established in Texas
The National Minority Business Council Inc. and Minority Business News USA have established, in Dallas, the country’s first Minority Business Hall of Fame and Museum. MBHF (www.mbhf.org ) will recognize and record the contributions of individuals and institutions to the development of minority business, including architects of policies and programs that made a difference in the growth of the minority business community. The first Hall of Fame members will be inducted at a January 13 ceremony in Dallas.
Magazine Targets New Parents of Black Babies
Mahoganybaby.com, a new online magazine, targets parents of Black children “from newborn to tween,” according to co-founders Wilma Ann Anderson and Natasha S. Downing. Mahogany Baby’s goal is to support the 10 million–plus African-American online community, carving out a niche for and about the Black parenting experience. It will cover such topics as “How to Ask Your Boss for Flextime,” “Does Grandma’s Way Really Work,” “The 411 on Maternity Clothes,” “The Black Dad: How Much He Really Does Help,” and “Is My Unborn Baby at Risk for Sickle-Cell Anemia?” Anderson and Downing say they plan to take the magazine to print by late 2005.
Contract Opportunities on Governors Island?
The Governors Island Preservation & Education Corp., the Empire State Development Corp. subsidiary responsible for the planning, redevelopment and ongoing operations of Governors Island, is seeking ideas for the island’s development and enhancement of its role as a vital part of New York City and the surrounding region. GIPEC officials say their goal is to make the island a destination with heritage tourism attractions and education, conference and cultural arts facilities. E-mail GIPEC at firstname.lastname@example.org , or see www.govisland.com .
City Launches Awards Program for Women Business Owners
The New York City Commission on Women’s Issues and the Department of Small Business Services launched “New York City Small Business Awards” to celebrate the achievements of women in business in the city. Eligible businesses must have fewer than 100 employees and annual revenues under $2.5 million. They must be in business at least two years and be based in New York City. Entries will be judged on business success, demonstrated entrepreneurial leadership and the benefits the enterprise provides to women in New York City. For more information, visit www.nyc.gov , or call 311 and ask for Small Business Awards. The deadline for applications is September 30.
SoftSheen Heads for New York
Cosmetics giant L'Oreal is relocating its SoftSheen-Carson division from Chicago to New York in November. L'Oreal created the division four years ago, after it bought Carson Products, an African-American hair care company. The company acquired Soft Sheen Products Inc., another African-American–owned hair care company, six years ago. Candace S. Matthews, president of SoftSheen-Carson, will move to New York to keep her position.
P&G Helps Company Get Started
Procter & Gamble will buy $30 million worth of products through December 2005 from Amantea Nonwovens LLC, a new Black-owned supplier of nonwoven fibers used in diapers, tampons and other products. Cincinnati-based Amantea distributes products manufactured by BBA Fiberweb and is gearing up for its own production. P&G will help it find other buyers for its products. Amantea will be the industry’s first African-American–owned manufacturer, chief executive Kevin Lynch said.
Valassis Seeks Minority Suppliers
Valassis Communications Inc., a Livonia, Mich., marketing services company, is looking for certified minority business enterprises to participate in its new minority supplier diversity program. Qualifying companies must be MBE certified by an organization such as the National Minority Supplier Development Council or its regional affiliates, the U.S. Small Business Administration and both state and municipal government agencies. Companies interested in applying should e-mail Valassis at supplierdiversity@valassis (Web site www.valassis.com ). Phone: 734-591-7374.
CDC: Tuberculosis Rates Higher for Blacks Than Whites
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported that Blacks in the states of Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, South Carolina and Tennessee have a TB rate of 11.3 per 100,000 people, which is 4.7 times greater than the rate for whites (2.4 per 100,000). Although the rate for Blacks in the South was similar to the rate for Blacks in the rest of the country (12.4 per 100,000 people), the national TB rate for whites was much lower (1.4 per 100,000) than for Southern whites.
FDA Urged to Protect Women From Black Cohosh Supplements
The Food and Drug Administration should warn women that preliminary research suggests that the herbal supplement black cohosh may increase the risks of breast cancer metastasis and liver failure, according to the Center for Science in the Public Interest. CSPI also called on the National Institutes of Health, which is studying the effectiveness of black cohosh in relieving hot flashes and other symptoms of menopause, to advise study subjects of the possible risks and to be on alert for any adverse effects. Drug and supplement makers are increasingly marketing black cohosh to menopausal women in the wake of the safety concerns raised about hormone replacement therapy.
Africa Trade Law Extended to 2015
President Bush signed legislation reauthorizing the African Growth and Opportunity Act until 2015. The act gives African nations duty-free access to U.S. markets if they make progress in opening their economies and building free markets. Thirty-seven African nations are currently eligible to participate in the program. The latest version of the law also extends through September 2007 a provision that allows African nations to sell duty-free apparel to the United States even if the fabric used in making the apparel is produced in a third nation. That provision was due to expire this fall.
SBA, AABWA Sign Agreement
The U.S. Small Business Administration and the American and African Business Women’s Alliance agreed to jointly promote programs that will help small businesses nationally and internationally, as well as participate in international trade opportunities, particularly in Africa. The two organizations will share information on women’s business ownership networks, training, procurement and online programs, as well as international trade programs, export assistance, general resource and other outreach materials. The agreement is effective for two years.
ABB Subsidiaries Plead Guilty to $1 Million Bribery in Nigeria
ABB Vetco Gray Inc. of Houston and ABB Vetco Gray U.K. Ltd. of Aberdeen, Scotland, subsidiaries of Swiss equipment-maker ABB Ltd., pleaded guilty in the United States to paying more than $1 million in illegal bribes to win oil contracts in Nigeria. Each will pay a fine of $5.25 million. They were charged under the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act. In a related civil case brought by the Securities and Exchange Commission, the parent company agreed to pay $5.9 million more in restitution and interest and a $10.5 million civil penalty.
Educational Firm Settles Government Privacy Complaint
Philip West Is First Black Mayor of Natchez, Miss.
Philip West, former state representative, county supervisor and civil rights activist, was sworn in as the mayor of Natchez, Miss. He is the first black mayor of Natchez since Reconstruction. As chairman of the Legislative Black Caucus, West stood against fellow Black legislators in supporting the appointment of Charles Pickering to the U.S. Court of Appeals, proclaiming the white judge was not a racist.
Name of Thurmond’s Biracial Daughter Added to State House Monument
The name of Strom Thurmond’s biracial daughter, Essie Mae Washington Williams, was added to the late South Carolina senator’s monument on the State House grounds in Columbia, S.C., following passage of enabling legislation. Thurmond, a one-time segregationist, fathered Williams, now 78, with his family’s 16-year-old Black maid. Williams is applying for membership in the United Daughters of the Confederacy, open to descendants of soldiers who fought for the South in the Civil War, and the National Society of Daughters of the American Revolution. She will accept a key role with the Black Patriots Foundation, which honors Blacks who fought in the Revolutionary War.
March to Emphasize Slavery’s Legacy
A September 29 reenactment of the arrival of slaves in Annapolis, Md., in the 18th century will have white reenactors in yokes being led through the city’s historic streets by Blacks. The march, which organizers hail as a step toward creating racial empathy in Annapolis, is the first stop on a tour of 10 East Coast cities by the European company Lifeline Expedition. Lifeline Expedition has organized similar marches in France, Portugal, Spain and other countries once involved in the African slave trade.
Former Wall Street Journal Editor Sues Dow Jones
Carolyn Phillips, a former assistant managing editor at The Wall Street Journal filed a discrimination lawsuit against publisher Dow Jones & Co., saying she was fired in November 2002 because she is African-American. Phillips, who worked for the Journal for more than 20 years, claims that Dow Jones has a “pattern and practice of channeling its African-American senior staff to minority functions” and that she was discriminated against because she suffers from lupus and had developed uveitis, an eye disease associated with the ailment. Her suit seeks $5 million in punitive damages.