Nearly 100 guests attended the kickoff to Real Times Media and Who’s Who Publishing “Titans of Industry: A Wealth & Wisdom Speakers Series” sponsored by Prudential Financial at the Detroit Port Authority.
“The purpose of Prudential’s involvement in the Titans of Industry is to help make a difference,” said Prudential U.S. Businesses Director of Consumer Strategy & Key Initiatives Multicultural Marketing Dorinda Walker. “We have been conducting a survey for a number of years and found that communities of color lack the financial prosperity of other communities.”
The panel included guest speakers Gwendolyn L. Butler, William F. Pickard, Ph.D, Deborah Owens, Harry Johnson and M. Roy Wilson, M.D., M.S.
Panelists spoke to the audience about issues related to gaining wealth for black and people of color.
“The more education you have, the more wealth you will have in your lifetime,” said Wilson, who serves at the president of Wayne State University. “If we don’t do something about the education disparity then we can expect there is nothing that will be done regarding the wealth disparity that plague people of color.”
Nearly all of the panelist pointed to education as one of the primary pillars of long term wealth.
Both the state of the family and the lack of generational wealth within communities of color is what panelist’s said plagues people of color the most.
“Let’s be honest and not get this mistaken,” said JoAnn Watson, former city of Detroit councilwoman. “Majority of the people who are ‘wealthy’ are simply recipients of a large inherence.”
Panelists suggested an often times overlooked financial wealth step and stress the need for life insurance for legacy and the start of generational wealth. They credited the lack of knowing about norms amongst the wealthy as a glaring issue that haunts the colored family.
“We really are not just dealing with a wealth gap but instead an information gap,” said Owens, who is the chief executive officer of Owens media Group, LLC.
Those in attendance enjoyed light refreshments, drinks and were treated to a view of Canada and the Detroit River.
“Just look and see – it is a beautiful time to be here in Detroit,” said former city of Detroit Archer. “Black businesses should be on the rise and we as a city should be excited to see that.”
Moderator and former BET News anchor Ed Gordon guaranteed to keep it real and encouraged panelist and the audience to remain honest and forthcoming to deliver real problem solving.
“We buy what we want, but beg for what we need,” said Pickard, chairman & CEO of Global Automotive Alliance, LLC. “This really makes no sense and we have to do better as a community.”
For more information on upcoming events and to read more about the Titans of Industry series, visit www.thetitansexperience.com.
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