New York, NY – More than 1,000 attendees from around the globe recently convened the wekend of Jan. 27-29 at the Sheraton New York Hotel and Towers for the 15th annual Wall Street Economic Summit, "bringing everyone to the table" including bankers, ministers, media executives, legislators and entrepreneurs creating solutions for issues affecting them.
Speakers varied from the chairman/president of Macy's, Terry Lundgren, to New York State Comptroller Thomas P. DiNapoli, Dr. Julianne Malveaux, chairman/CEO of The Peebles Corp.R. Donahue Peebles and Bank of America Sr. Client Manager/SVP Maurice Coleman.
"Diversity is easy, but equality; you have to fight for," said Rev. Jesse L Jackson, one of the nation's most influential civil rights activists and religious leaders and creator of the Wall Street Project, "and this week, we were able to make some strides towards building the bridge to equality." Students, were able to attend for free with a valid i.d., were offered the opportunity to network and learn innovative ways to obtain jobs in this rough economy.
The Small Business Institute provided key understanding to secure capital in a volatile economy; offered valuable lessons of creative strategies to increase business opportunities; and tangible content for business growth. Additionally, the Summit provided a platform for the Hip-Hop community to sit down and discuss how business practices in corporate America and Hip-Hop can be the same. There were exclusive seminars for policy makers, legislators and executives to discuss and survey specific efforts for advancement.
As in past years, Rev. Jackson brought the ministers to the table to discuss issues and solutions to problems affecting them such as bridging the gap between faith and finance; church foreclosures and banking accountability.
Attendees walked away with a keen sense of responsibility for 2012 and beyond. "Fifteen years ago, we fought to open up Wall Street. We can't stop fighting now. We will not be the last hired and the first fired. Not after all the effort we put into opening up Wall Street," says Rev. Jackson. Our struggle continues, it's just a different fight."
Jackson created the Wall Street Project to spur access to capital, industry and technology for minority businesses and communities. Each year the Wall Street Economic Summit brings together many of the nation's foremost commerce, business-minded, and entrepreneurial agents to discuss the economic, social justice, community interests, concerns unique to men, women and children of African American, Hispanic and diverse cultures.
The Rainbow PUSH Coalition is a progressive organization protecting, defending and expanding civil rights to improve economic and educational opportunity.