Wednesday, May 22, 2013

BLACK PAST.ORG: Remembered & Reclaimed, an online reference center makes available a wealth of materials on African American history in one central location on the Internet. These materials include an online encyclopedia of nearly 3,000 entries, the complete transcript of nearly 300 speeches by African Americans, other people of African ancestry, and those concerned about race, given between 1789 and 2012, over 140 full text primary documents, bibliographies, timelines and six gateway pages with links to digital archive collections, African and African American museums and research centers, genealogical research websites, and more than 200 other website resources on African American and global African history. Additionally, 100 major African American museums and research centers and over 400 other website resources on black history are also linked to the website, as are nine bibliographies listing more than 5,000 major books categorized by author, title, subject, and date of publication. It also features a Perspectives Online Magazine which features commentary of important but little known events in black history often written by the individuals who participated in or witnessed them.  To date more than 100 articles have appeared.  The compilation and concentration of these diverse resources allows to serve as the "Google" of African American history. brings the resources of African American history into every classroom in the world. It also makes every computer, regardless of its location, a classroom in African American history. is dedicated to providing the inquisitive public with comprehensive, reliable, and accurate information concerning the history of African Americans in the United States and people of African ancestry in other regions of the world. It is the aim of the founders and sponsors to foster understanding through knowledge in order to generate constructive change in our society. brings the resources of African American history into every classroom in the world. It also makes every computer, regardless of its location, a classroom in African American history.


Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Twins to Graduate With Identical Honors – Valedictorian

Identical twins Kirstie and Kristie Bronner share practically everything: hobbies, favorite colors, favorite foods, and clothes.  But now they can share the title of valedictorian.

Kirstie and Kristie, both 22, from Atlanta, Ga., will graduate May 19 as the first co-valedictorians who are also identical twins at Spelman College, in Atlanta.

“I don’t think we even thought about the possibility of it,” Kristie told

“We actually have prayed about it,” Kirstie said.  “Lord help us to make 4.0s all the way through college.”

The two have the same major—music—and both have perfect 4.0 GPAs.  The sisters managed to keep up their grades while juggling Spelman College’s glee club and volunteering at their father’s church, Word of Faith Family Worship Cathedral.

“I am extremely proud of them.  They have gotten that particular status the old fashion way,” their father, Bishop Dale Bronner, told “Their greatest asset is their discipline. They got their brilliance from the mother, but they got their discipline from their father.”
“We prayed harder than everybody else and worked harder,” Kirstie said.

For the twins, their achievement meant having to sacrifice going out on the weekends occasionally. “Our friends kind of just stopped asking,” Kristie said.

The sisters attribute most of their achievements to their relationship and their similarities. “Our values are the same,” Kristie said. “Our drive is the same. We spend a lot of time together so we always studied together.”

In fact, their personalities are so similar that the two said that they’ve had many occurrences where they’ve written papers or taken tests and had the same thesis points or wrong answers.

Identical twins Kirstie and Kristie Bronner are graduating as co-valedictorians with identical 4.0 GPAs from Spelman College in Atlanta, GA. (Courtesy Kirstie Bronner)

Kirstie and Kristie have one distinction that helps tell them apart. Kirstie said, “I’m a little more direct. She’s a little more sugarcoating.”

While Kristie admits that sharing so much may get on their nerves at times, it’s their teamwork that makes their dynamic successful.  ”In college, we discovered how different we are,” Kristie said.  ” Our differences actually compliment each other.  It helps us to get things done faster.”

Kirstie added, ” I think of of the biggest things that comes between twins is competition.  Although we have our arguments, I think that one way that we help to eliminate competition is to be mindful of it and be secure in our individual identities.”

One way the twins eliminate getting compared is by dressing alike. “You can’t say one twin is the more stylish twin if we have on the same thing,” Kirstie said.

After graduating, Kirstie and Kristie plan on continuing on the same path as youth counselors, youth event coordinators, and directors of music at the Word of Faith Family Worship Cathedral.  Achieving the title of valedictorian wasn’t enough for the girls.  They also plan on writing a book with scheduling tips and releasing a gospel album.

“We don’t think we achieved it based upon genius, but based upon strategy,” Kirstie said.

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Black Startup

Our platform is a new tool to generate financial resources to fund ideas and to address systemic social problems facing African-Americans on the local, national, and international level. Clearly, a platform that is operated by an honest broker will facilitate trust. But our platform will also lower transaction costs associated with raising capital. We will be the meeting place where those with good ideas can expose themselves to thousands/millions of potential investors at almost no monetary cost. Also, investors will have the opportunity to contribute to projects that they would have never known about without visiting our website. Finally, the affinity and commonality amongst the online community on our platform will lead to substantial activity and transactions on our platform as opposed to platforms that are not targeted towards a specific community.

Our crowdfunding platform specifically dedicated to the African-American community addresses the lack of African-Americans that are participating in the crowdfunding market because we can  market directly to the community. Furthermore, we can take advantage of established networks/groups  to build our online minority investing community. The idea is for our online community to be as reflective of the “on-ground” African-American community as possible.

Crowdfunding is beginning to move from a marketplace dominated by “one size fits all” style  platforms ( to more dedicated, topic-orieted/industry focused platforms. The idea is that by targeting the audience, the marketplace becomes more efficient because of group affinity. Essentially, crowdfunding works partially because it allows one to leverage social networking to get ideas funded through one’s existing relationships, one’s extended network, and the extended network of those one is connected to. Therefore, the more closely one is tied to the network of someone that is seeking funding, the more likely one is to give.

Our platform will be aligned with a network of people that already have a shared group identity, but it will additionally be able to tie into existing groups, organizations, and networks that already exist in the African-American community (both on the ground and online). This is what we mean when we assert that targeting can lead to increased activity and efficiency on a crowdfunding platform. Currently, there is a crowdfunding platform that is targeted to focus on ideas started by Jewish people or designed to advance Jewish interests. However, there is no platform for African-Americans. By focusing on a particular demographic group we will  benefit from the efficiency that targeting allows for.

Our platform/project can be used as a tool to increase education in the community on the benefits of investing, which addresses the over consumption of consumer goods and underuse of investing vehicles within the African-American community. To reach many of these goals, our group will benefit from partnerships with key organizations in the minority business landscape such as Black Enterprise magazine and the National Black MBA Association.

Finally, we address the unmet needs related to the changing dynamics of the regulation of the crowdfunding industry by designing an internet funding portal that can take advantage of the JOBS Act reforms.