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Rev. Jesse L. Jackson, Sr. Speaks on the State of Black Wealth in America

February 20, 2019



For Immediate Release

Rev. Jesse L. Jackson, Sr. Speaks on the State of Black Wealth in America at

22nd Annual Rainbow PUSH Wall Street Project Economic Summit 


(New York, NY) February 20, 2019 – Rev. Jesse L. Jackson, Sr. and the Rainbow PUSH Coalition and Citizenship Education Fund kicked off their 22ndAnnual Wall Street Project Economic Summit Wednesday at the Sheraton New York Times Square. The civil rights icon and two-time presidential candidate addressed this year’s theme “400 Years Later: Closing the Wealth Gap, Expanding Opportunity” for African Americans and other people of color in the United States.

At the opening press briefing, Rev. Jackson presented the Wall Street Project Economic Summit White Paper, an overview of the struggle of the African American community to increase wealth and gain financial equality by using votes and dollars, becoming shareholders and making a commitment to spending less than we make.


“African Americans have journeyed through four stages of a 400-year struggle,” Rev. Jackson said. “Stage one – ending slavery after 246 years in bondage; Stage two – ending the Jim Crow era with its mass lynchings and terror campaigns; Stage three – securing the right to vote; and currently, Stage four – securing access to capital, industry, technology and deal flow in the U.S. economy.” stated Rev. Jackson.


“We are in the early days of stage four,” he continued. “We have freedom in our lives, but we don’t have equality. There are some steps the African-American community can take to move closer to gaining equality and the fruits that will come with the successful navigation of stage four of the struggle. It’s the simplest way to begin building wealth. We must save money to invest in building a future. It’s time to consolidate that earning power for the welfare of the community.”


Highlights from Wednesday include:

  • Fireside chat with Rev. Jesse Jackson Sr. and Toni Townes-Whitley, President, U.S Regulated Industries   Microsoft Corporation
  • A dialogue with PUSH Excel, Educators and Corporate Leaders discussing the critical issues in higher education, policy issues and how to improve the preparation of the students for the workforce of today and tomorrow, and securing the future with leaders of Historically Black Colleges and Universities
  • An insightful discussion on the State of Black Wealth after the Emancipation Proclamation and the best efforts to close the wealth gap with Janice L Mathis. Esq,Executive Director of National Council of Negro Women; Marc H. Morial, President and Chief Executive Officer, National Urban League; Alfred A. Edmonds, Jr.,Senior Vice President/Executive Editor-At-Large BLACK ENTERPRISE; and Eugene Mitchell, Founder and Principal/E. Mitchell Consulting Group
  • Opening Night Reception featuring members of the 116th Congress


The summit continues on Thursday with a fireside chat with Thomas Moriarity, Chief Policy and External Affairs Officer, General Counsel, CVS Health; and Level Up: The Business of Hip Hop panel featuring an exclusive conversation with Percy “Master P” Miller, 2019 Living Legend Awardee and Annual Wall Street Project Scholarship Gala chair Susan Taylor, Founder and CEO National CARES Mentoring Movement and Editor-in-Chief Emerita, Essence MagazineOn Friday, the summit concludes withits Business Luncheon featuring keynote speaker Congresswoman Maxine Waters.


Click here for full agenda: https://rainbowpush.org/wall-street-project


Press Contact: Michelle Pascal at (917)715-3659 or Nicole Newsum (646) 642-3097

Press Room Hours Thurs., Feb. 21 | 8:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m. | Fri., Feb. 22 | 8:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.

Press, to set up an interview or to receive onsite media credentials, email: assistant@ariellewren.com  




Please find below quotes from Wednesday’s Summit and click here for photos.


"It is important as a people, to tell our OWN story. The story of Black Wall Street, the story of the destruction in 1921 by the violence Tulsa, OK. The story of our movie—from being owned to our demand to OWN! These are stories WE can only tell” - Dr. Johnetta B. Coles, National Chair and President, National Council of Negro Women


“The internet is being used as a tool of manipulation. Our ability to impact the racial wealth gap depends on our ability to exercise and maximize our political power. We need to maximize our political power if we are going to address the racial gap.” – Marc H. Morial, President and Chief Executive Officer, National Urban League


 “We need to create wealth out of any career. Your net worth is what you own minus what you owe. Debt is only good if you are going to take that resource to make more money.”- Alfred Edmonds, Jr. Senior Vice President/Executive Editor-At-Large BLACK ENTERPRISE


I see career as a staircase. There are vertical moments in there, of your career, where you’re stretching into new capability and having to learn an amazing amount of new content. There are horizontal moments in your career where you’re applying what you learned in your environment.” - Toni Townes-WhitleyPresident, U.S Regulated Industries Microsoft Corporation


“If we’re going to defeat these wealth gaps, we will do it by using the power of our votes because these systems are entrenched like barnacles onto capitalism that needs to be moderated by democratic principles and ideals.”

-Janice L Mathis. Esq, Executive Director of National Council of Negro Women

“We’re not doing what it takes to create wealth, to keep wealth, and to sustain wealth in the way of having proper estate planning.” - Eugene Mitchell, Founder and Principal/E. Mitchell Consulting Group


“I see myself in the struggle. I see the struggle in South African people. We are struggling with inequality, we are struggling against employment poverty. This is the time that man made poverty and corruption is different. We have not realized our destination. Our destination will be equality of all men--and all men have access to riches. Until that it is achieved, the struggle continues.”- Bulelani G. Magwanishe, Deputy Minster of Trade and Industry; Republic of South Africa


Media Contact:
Michelle A. Pascal, michelle@ariellewren.com, 917.715.3649
Nicole Newsum, assistant@ariellewren.com, 646.642.3097
Renée E. Warren, renee@ariellewren.com, 646.344.2630


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