COAL Recognizes August as National Black Business Month......Aug 15, 2020
August 1st marked the beginning of the 16th annual National Black Business Month (NBBM), an observance that highlights the importance of African-American businesses to the Black community as well as our national economy. This celebration also generates awareness for the policy issues affecting African-American entrepreneurship.

Founders John William Templeton and Frederick E. Jordan Sr. started the national holiday back in 2004 “to drive the policy agenda affecting the 2.6 million African American businesses,” according to the official website. But there are so many ways to join in on the festivities, from mentoring up-and-coming entrepreneurs to shopping from the Black businesses in your community. 
COAL asks it membership and community of interest to:
  • Buy Black, Buy Black, Buy Black;
  • Encourage and Support Black Entrepreneurship;
  • Utilize our black doctors, dentists, lawyers, financial analysts, consultants;
  • Use 'word of mouth' to actively market black businesses that have provided high-quality service / products;
  • Demand high-quality services and products from black-owned businesses; and then pay for said services and products as you would with majority-owned businesses; resist insisting that black-owned businesses 'cut you a deal', thereby reducing their margins;
  • Support legislation that supports small business growth;
  • identify and support economic generators that create opportunities (the South Suburban Airport is a great example);
  • Elect and re-elect officials with a proven track record of expanding opportunities for black business;
  • Demand that MBE policies at all levels are more than words on a document; demand results; demand transparency in reporting progress towards meeting and exceeding MBE goals;
  • Support financial institutions that support black businesses;
  • Fight to knock down barriers and improve access to capital;
  • Promote upward mobility for our professionals in all sectors;
  • Circulate and re-circulate your hard earned dollars within the community;
  • Challenge the status quo of limited access to Corporate Boards;
  • Mentor a business;
  • Provide Internships to our youth;
  • Invest in black-owned businesses;
  • Pass on the experiences you've gained so that others can mitigate the challenges of starting / sustaining their business;
  • Black businesses: form alliances and purchase collectively to secure lower pricing on inventory and supplies;
  • Black business owners: Practice Succession Planning.
  • Black business owners: focus on expanding your knowledge of all areas of your business beyond your core service or product; technical, financial, marketing, strategic planning, relationship management, negotiations, customer service...;
  • All: During the month of August and every month, Buy Black, Buy Black, Buy Black, whenever and wherever it works for you and yours.
Applications for Emergency Rental Assistance are available now through August 21 at

Emergency Rental Assistance program FAQ’s can currently be found at

Applications for Emergency Mortgage Assistance will be available on August 24 at

If you have any questions, please call 312.883.2720 or 888.252.1119.

What We Believe
The Coalition of African American Leaders believes that it is important to examine the critical issues confronting the African American community where injustice, inequality and the absence of access and opportunity continue to prevail, thereby negatively impacting us as a people. COAL is an assemblage that advocates and organizes for appropriate and responsible public policy change, system behavior change and equality of opportunity. We aim to achieve for all of our people the fullness of the life experience without any form of racism or exclusion as a deterrent. We believe we must prepare ourselves for the opportunity of this full participation, thereby achieving the necessary education and training to participate.