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GEDDI Partneship
GEDDI NOW ACCEPTING APPLICATIONS FOR

FREE AND VIRTUAL BUSINESS INCUBATOR PROGRAM BEGINS NEW 10-WEEK COHORT OCTOBER 16 

 

PARTICIPANTS ARE ELIGIBLE TO APPLY FOR $10,000 GRANT

 

Louisville, KY (September 7, 2023) – The Global Economic Diversity Development Initiative (GEDDI) has announced that applications are now being accepted for the final Just Boss up Academy cohort of 2023. Just Boss Up Academy is GEDDI’s business incubator program designed to provide Black founders with the access, resources, and tools needed to have a legally established business. Just Boss Up Academy’s free and virtual cohort will begin on October 16 and run through December 14. Exclusive grant opportunities are available to participants, including one $10,000 grant. Applications are being accepted now through October 1 at www.geddi.org/jbu

 

"It's been rewarding and exciting to see our program evolve," says GEDDI Executive Director, Christy Chatham. “We are working with talented entrepreneurs nationwide and look forward to the continued growth and success of the program.” 

 

“I was in the first cohort of Just Boss Up Academy and right away I started gaining skills and resources to legitimize my business,” says Aaron Jordan, Just Boss Up Academy graduate and Founder/CEO of Black Complex. “I needed that collateral to help me do business with high level professionals. When coupled with my natural talents, I was able to gain a lot of leverage in conversation and become more confident as a business leader.”  

Just Boss Up Academy applications are open to Black founders 18 years of age or older with an early stage or emerging physical product, service or technology enabled product business.  

 

 

Applicants may only submit one application per cohort and must meet the following criteria:  

 

  • Have identified problems that you are solving through a physical or digital product (Non-profit and multi-level marketing programs are prohibited. Professional services, for ex. consultancies will be considered on a case-by-case basis) 

  • Be a passionate emerging or existing founder willing and able to dedicate 5-7 hours per week for the entirety of the program 

  • Showcase a level the commitment and discipline required to complete the program and ongoing milestones 

  • Possess the ability to display some form of traction or signs that the company will be able to grow and scale 

 

GEDDI’s mission is to shrink the racial wealth gap and support in building generational wealth for the Black community. Just Boss Up Academy’s objective is to boost Black founders by providing necessary instruction from subject matter experts and vital networks to succeed in business. Each participant will graduate with a business plan, brand identity package, proper business registration, corporate structure, and insurances. To date, Just Boss Up Academy has graduated over 100 Black business owners and provided over $85,000 in grants.  

 

To apply for the next cohort of Just Boss Up Academy visit www.geddi.org/jbu

 

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About GEDDI: 

Global Economic Diversity Development Initiative (GEDDI) exists to intentionally make a positive impact on Black business development by closing the racial wealth gap and transforming the outcomes for the Black community through economic empowerment.  GEDDI is committed to providing resources, access, and tools to Black-owned businesses and emerging entrepreneurs. GEDDI’s vision is to serve as a worldwide giving choice for racial equity and economic justice initiatives to create generational wealth for the Black community. 

GEDDI & THE GRANT CARDONE FOUNDATION ANNOUCE PARTNERSHIP

Louisville, KY (June 6, 2023) – The Global Economic Diversity Development Initiative (GEDDI) has entered a partnership with the Grant Cardone Foundation in an effort to close the racial wealth gap and provide much needed funding and resources in the hands of minority business owners nationwide. GEDDI has already received a $50,000 investment from the Grant Cardone Foundation to help facilitate GEDDI’s Just Boss Up Academy business incubator program and provide funding opportunities to cohort graduates. 

 

Together, GEDDI and the Grant Cardone Foundation plan to increase funding and grant making capacity to cover GEDDI operational costs, Just Boss Up Academy cohort graduate grants, and a Pitch Competition for Derby Diversity Week. A shared goal of both organizations is to expand GEDDI’s geographic impact throughout US cities with the greatest wealth gap (Puerto Rico, Miami, Atlanta) and to increase financial literacy education for underserved populations. 

 

GEDDI is a 501(c)3 non-profit foundation with the ability to make grants to nonprofit and for-profit recipients focused on building economic wealth for the Black community. GEDDI began operations in August 2020 and is becoming a leader in funding Black business development.  Just Boss Up Academy is GEDDI’s flagship business accelerator program designed to provide founders with the access, resources, and tools to have a legally established business.  Each participant will graduate with a business plan, brand identity package, proper business registration, corporate structure, and insurances. Just Boss Up Academy provides 3 virtual cohorts each calendar year and accepts applications at www.geddi.org/jbu.

 

"At the Grant Cardone Foundation, we are thrilled to be embarking on this project with the GEDDI team. Providing financial literacy education to underserved youth is a mission we are extremely passionate about. Our curriculum will fit beautifully with GEDDI's Just Boss Up entrepreneurial support training. We can't wait to see all the success we can create together!" remarked Sheri Hamilton, Board Chair for The Grant Cardone Foundation.

 

“We are so excited for this partnership with the Grant Cardone Foundation,” says GEDDI’s Executive Director, Christy Chatham. “We have an opportunity to provide more access, training, resources, and capital to Black entrepreneurs nationwide and soon globally by gaining an ally that is standing alongside GEDDI and the communities we serve. Moving more quickly towards systemic change helps us both tackle the financial and philanthropic wealth gap together. Alone may seem simpler, but unaided progress happens much more slowly. Through this corporate partnership, we are enhancing a coordinated strategy together to help bring about more holistic change and 10Xing™ our impact! We thank Grant Cardone and the Grant Cardone Foundation for their generosity and support."

 

GEDDI’s Just Boss Up Academy has graduated over 100 business owners and provided over $85,000 in grants and resources since inception. 

GEDDI INTRODUCES EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR
AND PLANS FOR NATIONAL EXPANSION

Community Partner of the Year, Ally of the Year,

and Black Businesses Grant Recipients Announced

Louisville, KY (December 7, 2022) – GEDDI (Global Economic Diversity Development Initiative), a non-profit organization that serves as a worldwide giving choice for racial equity and economic justice initiatives intended to create generational wealth for the Black community, held its annual meeting at the Kentucky Derby Museum on Wednesday, December 7 to release the 2022 annual report and announce plans for the future of the organization.

 

Christy Chatham was introduced as GEDDI’s Executive Director and gave remarks about the expansion of GEDDI across the country. Christy was previously working as the Director of Veterans Behavioral Health for Mental Health America of Greater Houston where she grew services to multi-city locations to meet the intensifying needs of clients during Covid-19.  Christy approaches her new role with GEDDI with a proven history of developing strategic relationships and processes. She also brings a specialized skill set which includes Diversity, Equity, Inclusion (DEI) curriculum development, grant writing, and research and analysis.

 

“I am honored and so humbled to join the amazing GEDDI team as the new Executive Director,” says Chatham. “We’re making a real difference for people of color and their families, all while forging new relationships, building new bonds, and paving new roads to entrepreneurship. With a team as strong and dedicated as ours, and a strong foundation, we will soon be able to extend our mission far beyond state lines to reach ambitious people in every community.”

 

GEDDI’s goals for 2023 include doubling the number of grantees, to increase and diversify funding sources by 60%, to increase the number of Just Boss up Academy graduates by 80%, to enhance the current program curriculum, and to expand GEDDI’s reach into other US cities.

 

GEDDI announced the Community Partner of the Year award was given to Render Capital and Ally of the Year award was given to congressman-elect Morgan McGarvey.

 

Six locally-owned Black businesses were also awarded $5,000 microgrants in partnership with Render Capital’s First Dollar Program:

 

Black Girls Conquer All - Portia Ellis, Owner

Drick’s Treats - Ter’Dricka Fresh, Owner

Gifts by Tiphanie - Tiphanie Grant, Owner

Love Thy Belly - Fairen Kia, Owner

PLSIX Porta Potty Rentals, LLC - Portia Shoulders, Owner

Alive Advocacy - Kayla Wiley, Owner

 

GEDDI founder and Board Chair, Tawana Bain, adds, “GEDDI is out here moving mountains, and I couldn’t be more proud. I founded GEDDI in 2020 as a response to the systemic racism that remains so insidiously present in our society. It’s a generational curse that only we can break, and one that we must break if we’re going to protect our future. We’re so incredibly happy to expand our microgrant recipient program and we welcome Christy Chatham as Executive Director, along with two new partners, the Humana Foundation and the James Graham Brown Foundation. Thank you to all of our partners for trusting us to help safeguard our shared future, and for stepping up when it would have been easier to back down. We’re going to do this, and we’re going to do it together.”

 

GEDDI’s 2022 annual report and additional information can be found at www.geddi.org/about.

 

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About GEDDI:

Global Economic Diversity Development Initiative (GEDDI) exists to intentionally make a positive impact on Black business development by closing the racial wealth gap and transforming the outcomes for the Black community through economic empowerment. GEDDI is committed to providing resources, access, and tools to Black-owned businesses and emerging entrepreneurs.

Christy Lane Report Web
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Who’s That Girl: Christy Chatham 

Executive Director, GEDDI

Today’s Woman Magazine 

October 2022 

 

Written by Tawana Bain | Photograph provided by Christy Chatham 

In her new role as Executive Director of the Louisville-based Global Economic Diversity Development Initiative (GEDDI), Christy Chatham brings a proven history of developing strategic relationships and processes. A US Army veteran and former military intelligence analyst, Christy has many years of experience servicing underserved populations with a specialized interest in veteran’s issues.  Christy previously led veteran-serving programs for Mental Health America of Greater Houston, the Women Veteran Services program for Catholic Charities and the Department of Veterans Affairs in Houston, Texas. She has also worked as a Program Management Analyst – Compliance Division at the Office of Government Ethics in Washington, D.C. 

A self-described “data nerd,” Christy brings a specialized skill set that includes strategic growth, grant writing, research, and analysis to her leadership position at GEDDI. “I am thrilled to join an amazing team of extraordinary individuals that are changing the landscape of entrepreneurship for people of color and their families,” she says. “I am confident my expertise in analytics, program and capacity building, along with my personal connection to GEDDI’s goals, will enable me to expand and enhance the organization’s mission.” 

Christy is an active member of the Houston community. She serves on the Public Safety Committee for the City of Houston, the Governor’s Taskforce for Veteran Suicide Prevention, and the Mayor’s Taskforce for Veteran Suicide. She has appeared on several media outlets, in print and television, communicating the challenges veterans were facing as a result of the troop withdrawal in Afghanistan, sharing mental and behavioral health data and resources, and championing the female veteran. 

GEDDI ANNOUNCES CHRISTY CHATHAM AS EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR

Global Economic Diversity Development Initiative (GEDDI) is delighted to announce the joining of Christy Chatham (MPA) as its Executive Director. Christy has been previously working as the Director of Veterans Behavioral Health for Mental Health America of Greater Houston where she grew services to multi-city locations to meet the intensifying needs of clients during Covid-19.  Christy approaches her new role with GEDDI with a proven history of developing strategic relationships and processes. She also brings a specialized skill set which includes Diversity, Equity, Inclusion (DEI) curriculum development, grant writing, and research and analysis.

 

Christy Chatham holds a Masters of Public Administration from Texas Southern University (HBCU) and is a Veteran of the United States Military, serving as an intelligence analyst for the US Army.  In addition to her Military service, she worked as the Finance and Program Senior Analyst at the Office of Government Ethics in Washington, DC. Christy also has an extensive history working with Veterans as a Project Manager and Patient Advocate with the Department of Veteran Affairs, Executive Director of Femmevet, Director of the Women Veterans Program at Catholic Charities of Greater Houston, a consultant to the department of Housing and Urban Development, and most recently as the Director for Veterans Behavioral Health with Mental Health America of Greater Houston.

 

Christy is a self-described “data nerd” who likes to use data to drive strategic decisions and is also adept at building new relationships. “As an Army Veteran, I have a unique appreciation for service, camaraderie, and advocacy,” said Christy Chatham, Executive Director of GEDDI. “I am thrilled to join an amazing team of extraordinary individuals that are changing the landscape of entrepreneurship for people of color and their families.  I hope that my expertise in analytics, strategic growth, program and capacity building, and a personal connection to the mission will continue to expand and enhance the mission. I look forward to building with my fellow teammates, the Board, and the entrepreneurial community of Louisville and beyond.”

 

“We have stood GEDDI up in the most nontraditional of environments since 2020, which has given the organization room to learn, grow, ideate and plan,” said Tawana Bain, Founder and Board Chair of GEDDI. “Once again, I am asking the community to come together and to support Christy to ensure she is successful in plotting the future of GEDDI, while preserving the mission and vision of the organization. We are one Kentucky and one community that has a vested interest in changing the narrative to ensure all people in business have an opportunity to participate in the American dream.”

 

“I applaud the leadership of Tawana Bain and the work of GEDDI, based in Louisville,” said JP Davis, Founder of JP Davis Partners who led and conducted the nationwide search for GEDDI’s Executive Director position. “Attracting new top talent to Louisville should be celebrated and it’s a testament of a lot of hard work and the mission of GEDDI.”  

 

The Executive Director is the key management leader of GEDDI and is responsible for overseeing the administration, programs, and strategic plan of the organization. Christy will be in charge of developing new funding for GEDDI, overseeing the existing programs and team, and building GEDDI from a nascent organization started during the pandemic to a national and international foundation that supports Black business development. She will be based in Houston with a presence in Louisville to work with key stakeholders and supporters. 

HUMANA FOUNDATION AWARDS GRANT TO GEDDI

The Global Economic Diversity Development Initiative (GEDDI) announced today that it has been awarded a $125,000 grant from the Humana Foundation. 

“We are so grateful for the support from the Humana Foundation,” said Dawne Gee, GEDDI’s Director of Operations & Opportunities.  “With this funding we will be able to continue providing support for Black-owned businesses, while also continuing our strategic planning for the future of the organization.”

GEDDI is a 501(c)3 non-profit focused on building economic wealth for the Black Community in the following areas: workforce opportunities, economic empowerment, supply chain opportunities, leadership and development, as well as business acceleration. GEDDI is a 100% Black-founded and Black-led foundation based in Louisville, Kentucky.

“Once again our corporate partners are stepping up to support racial equity in our business community,” said Tawana Bain, Founder and Board Chair of GEDDI. “This next year will be critical to our success as we continue to grow our organization and provide more resources to Black-owned businesses."

The Global Economic Diversity Development Initiative (GEDDI) announced today that it has been awarded a $350,000 grant from the James Graham Brown Foundation for capacity building.  

“I am thrilled the James Graham Brown Foundation recognizes GEDDI as a partner who can move the needle to even the playing field for Black Businesses,” said Dawne Gee, GEDDI’s Director of Operations & Opportunities. “GEDDI has been hard at work for the past year developing a first-class charity organization and this gift will allow us to hire more staff and intensify our strategic planning.”

GEDDI is a 501(c)3 non-profit focused on building economic wealth for the Black Community in the following areas: workforce opportunities, economic empowerment, supply chain opportunities, leadership and development, as well as business acceleration. GEDDI is a 100% Black-founded and Black-led foundation based in Louisville, Kentucky.

“GEDDI has been at the forefront of responding to the needs of Black entrepreneurs and businesses in this past year, and the Brown Foundation is proud to support the expansion of that work so that continues to make a difference for Louisvillians,” said Mason Rummel, President & CEO of the James Graham Brown Foundation.

“We have been hyper-focused on building up our programming for the past year, and with this gift we will be able to begin the real work of building up our foundation,” said Tawana Bain, Founder and Board Chair of GEDDI.  “When I founded GEDDI a year ago, I knew the real test would be to see if corporate leaders would place trust in GEDDI to be a responsible steward of funding. We are seeing that is exactly the case and we’re ready to get to work!”

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The James Graham Brown Foundation was incorporated in 1954 by James Graham Brown, a successful lumberman, horseman and entrepreneur who called Louisville home. He died in 1969 with no heirs, leaving the bulk of his estate to the foundation. Since its incorporation, the foundation has awarded nearly 3,300 grants totaling over $620 million. Each grant is made with the aim of creating a brighter future for people throughout Louisville and Kentucky, thereby elevating the Commonwealth in the eyes of the world. The foundation strives to execute Mr. Brown’s vision of Kentucky as a national leader through philanthropic investments in education and workforce readiness, community and economic prosperity, and quality of life. For more, visit www.jgbf.org.

1st Place - Jimmy Ray, Enclave Consulting (middle)

2nd Place - Antoine Terry, Unite 502 (right)

3rd Place - Tammy Darden, Sapphire T's Bartending Services (left)

 

The pitch contest is the culmination of the Just Boss Up Academy program. We celebrate each graduate and allow them to pitch their business to a panel of judges for cash prizes for them to invest back into their business.

 

1st place $500

2nd place $250

3rd place $100

 

We encourage participants to continue to sharpen their business pitch and share it with everyone they encounter, as they never know if that person might be their next customer or investor.

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Louisville, KY (May 10, 2021) – GEDDI is pleased to announce its participation in the Kentucky Nonprofit Network’s 9th annual KY Gives Day on Tuesday, May 11.  From 12 am to 12 am nonprofits from across the Commonwealth will be engaged in friendly competition for prizes and working to secure matching gifts.  GEDDI has set a goal of $15,000 for this day of giving to help further its mission to support the ability to supply grants for economic development initiatives centered around Black-owned business development and local community initiatives. Donations are being accepted now through May 12th at https://www.kygives.org/organizations/geddi and all donors are encouraged to spread the word using the hashtag #KYGives21.

Kentucky Nonprofit Network is the Commonwealth’s state association of nonprofit organizations.  They exist to strengthen and advance the nonprofit sector through a unified public policy voice, education, technical assistance, networking opportunities and sharing of best practices.

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GEDDI (Global Economic Diversity Development Initiative), a nonprofit organization that serves as a worldwide giving choice

for racial equity and economic justice initiatives intended to create generational wealth for the Black community.

411 S 4th Street Unit 701122

Louisville, KY 40270

800-827-4620

email: info@geddi.org
marketing/press inquiries: mporter@geddi.org
program inquiries: aspann@geddi.org

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