Web Accessibility Support

Howard University, PNC National Center for Entrepreneurship (HUxPNC) to Celebrate Juneteenth, Future of Black Entrepreneurship with Second Annual Black Commerce Conference

U.S. Rep. Nikema Williams (GA-05), Former NBA All-Star and Sports Entrepreneur Baron Davis, Honey Pot Founder Bea Dixon, Recording Artist Eric Roberson to Participate

Black Commerce Conference 2023

WASHINGTON – This Juneteenth, The Howard University and PNC National Center for Entrepreneurship will bring together hundreds of HBCU students, faculty, and aspiring and established Black entrepreneurs for its second annual Black Commerce Conference. Under the theme "Black Commerce: The Future of Entrepreneurship," the event is designed to embody the essence of Juneteenth, celebrating the resounding momentum of Black entrepreneurship worldwide. Set to take place June 19-22 at the prestigious Gaylord National Resort and Convention Center in National Harbor, Maryland, this year's event promises to be a beacon of inspiration. The conference will feature distinguished figures and trailblazers like U.S. Rep. Nikema Williams (GA-05), former NBA All-Star and sports entrepreneur Baron Davis, Honey Pot founder Bea Dixon, artist Eric Roberson, former WNBA player and Atlanta Dream co-owner Renee Montgomery, and more.

“We eagerly anticipate the gathering of innovators, thought leaders, change-makers and allies for a truly transformative experience. This conference serves as a guiding light, showcasing avenues to prosperity and celebrating the limitless potential of Black entrepreneurship," said Erin Horne McKinney, national executive director, HUxPNC. "It's a privilege to lead this initiative, nurturing an environment where collaboration flourishes, ideas thrive, and networks expand. In partnership with our supporters, we're committed to laying the foundation for a future where Black economic empowerment knows no limits." 

The conference will feature a variety of engaging, interactive and entertaining panels and sessions with nationally recognized leaders, facilitators and talent, elevating intergenerational conversations about Black entrepreneurship while uplifting notable HBCU alumni in the business, tech, entertainment and education sectors. The highlight of the kickoff event includes:

    • Howard alum and recording artist Eric Roberson will perform a riveting set with a live band, with additional featured performances from recording artists Elle Varner and Kevin Ross.

"We are proud to continue our support for the Center and its important work, including its cornerstone, annual Black Commerce Conference,” said Richard Bynum, chief corporate responsibility officer for The PNC Financial Services Group. “This event showcases our shared dedication to advancing economic equity and uplifting the next wave of Black entrepreneurs. By fostering collaboration and innovation with HBCUs, we’re furthering our efforts to ignite impactful transformations in communities nationwide."

Additional conference highlights include: 

  • Opening reception and Juneteenth celebration 
  • Expert-led workshops 
  • Celebrity fireside chats
  • Resource fair
  • HBCU student social
  • Black Commerce Gala
  • Black Tech Saturday

Session and Workshop Tracts include:

  • AI: Funding Black AI Founders for the Future 
  • For the Culture: Creating Space for Black Entrepreneurship in Media
  • Fireside Chat: Building A Wealth Plan: Lessons in Investing, Technology, and Entrepreneurship
  • More Than Independent: Creating A Business as A Creative Entrepreneur Panel
  • Building Public-Private Partnerships to Economically Empower Our Communities
  • From Startup to Exit: Growing Towards Acquisition
  • From NIL to Ownership: Controlling our Destiny Beyond the Playing Field

Registration for the 2024 Black Commerce Conference is now open. For more information about the initiative, please visit www.black-commerce.com.



About The Howard University and PNC National Center for Entrepreneurship 

The Howard University and PNC National Center for Entrepreneurship was established in 2021 through a five-year, $16.8 million grant from the PNC Foundation as part of PNC's $88 billion Community Benefits Plan focused on bolstering economic opportunity for low- and moderate-income (LMI) individuals, communities and people of color. The mission of the center is to support expanded opportunities for Black entrepreneurship with educational, leadership and capacity-building resources and programs nationwide, sharing resources through four regional hub schools and their network of more than 100 HBCUs nationwide. For more information, visit https://hupnccenter.howard.edu/.

About PNC Foundation

The PNC Foundation, which receives its principal funding from The PNC Financial Services Group (www.pnc.com), actively supports organizations that provide services for the benefit of communities in which it has a significant presence. The foundation focuses its philanthropic mission on early childhood education and community and economic development, which includes the arts and culture. Through PNC Grow Up Great®, its signature cause that began in 2004, PNC has created a bilingual $500 million, multi-year initiative to help prepare children from birth to age 5 for success in school and life. For more information, visit http://www.pncgrowupgreat.com.

About Howard University

Founded in 1867, Howard University is a private research university that is comprised of 14 schools and colleges. Students pursue more than 140 programs of study leading to undergraduate, graduate, and professional degrees. The University is committed to Excellence in Truth and Service. It has produced one Schwarzman Scholar, three Marshall Scholars, four Rhodes Scholars, 12 Truman Scholars, 25 Pickering Fellows and more than 165 Fulbright recipients. Howard also produces more on-campus African American Ph.D. recipients than any other university in the United States. For more information on Howard University, visit www.howard.edu.