Georgia Newsbeat


Citizens Trust CEO Cynthia Day

Black Business Affinity Index Ranking  3

250,000 entrepreneurs calling Peach State home

From the 100 patents by innovator Lonnie Johnson in his downtown Atlanta lab to the tens of thousands at the Bronner Bros. international hair show to the 100 year history of business lending by Citizens Trust (CZB), African-American businesses have Georgia on their mind.

The state is ranked third on #BLACKDOLLARSMATTER: State of Black Business, 12th edition ratings on the Black Business Affinity Index using the Ten Key Factors for Black Business Success because of the big goals and big accomplishments of those entrepreneurs.

Outside Atlanta, the policy environment at the state level is not supportive, which underscores how determined its businesses are.  The plans to acquire Ft. McPherson by Tyler Perry Studios could bring an additional 5,000 jobs to the state.

Georgia black businesses had $21 billion in revenue in the most recent year available with 153,953 led by women and 98,984 headed by men.  The 8,396 companies with paid employees had 61,299 workers.

Healing Waters

Aug. 1 31Ways31Days

There is an unmistakeable effect on one's soul from being in the presence of the Tomb of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. in the midst of the fountain in front of the King Center for the Study of Non-Violence.

Make a statement to the bigots who placed Confederate flags there on the first day of National Black Business Month by visiting the King Center.


Aug. 2  31 Ways 31 Days

Since 1847, Big Bethel A.M.E. Church has been a beacon for justice in Atlanta's Auburn Avenue community


Atlanta mourns H.J. Russell Sr. , 83, pioneer in African-American general contracting

ATLANTA -- Mayor Kasim Reed said, "Today, the City of Atlanta has lost one of its best men. No words can express the depth of our sorrow and nothing will ever fill the void created by the passing of Mr. Herman J. Russell.

As the founder of one of America's most successful construction and real estate businesses, Mr. Russell shattered countless barriers and created greater opportunities for all, but especially for African-Americans. "

Reed also proclaimed, " Few men have done more to make Atlanta a place where people of all races and backgrounds can bring and build their dreams. 

At the time of Russell's passing, his 62-year-old construction firm was completing the first African-American museum on the National Mall in Washington, D.C., the National Museum of African-American History and Culture, across from the  Washington Monument.

Reed added, "When history catches its breath, Mr. Russell's life work will place him among the most significant heroes of the Civil Rights Movement because of his unwavering contributions and commitment to the progress of this city and nation."  

His sons, Michael and H. Jerome, serve as CEO and President of H.J. Russell & Co.

 "Russell was also a tremendous source of personal inspiration to me throughout my life. Outside of my family, he was my original example of a great man. I was in awe of him, and later, that admiration also came to include respect and love. I will miss him deeply. "

Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed  

The wake for H.J. Russell Sr.  will be held. at Ebenezer Baptist Church on Friday, Nov. 21 at 6 p.m.; and the funeral will be at 11 a.m. on Saturday, Nov. 22 at St. Philip AME Church at 240 Candler Rd SE