Three key questions from WTB S4 Ep. 1

November 7, 2023

By Te’Jal Cartwright, Founder, What’s The Biz

In What’s The Biz Season 4’s first episode, Kourtney Terry (Taste-T Love), Keenan Woods (Remarkable Ice), Karlisa Heflin (Tiny Scholars University), and Joshua Nalls (Nalls and Davis Attorneys at Law) set the tone for the season!

Through our conversations, it was obvious that there is a deep desire for Black businesses to establish full autonomy, have equitable opportunities, and build a successful foundation that lasts for generations.

Meet the panelists

Over the years, I’ve seen Black business owners experience atypical complications. When we decided that the topic of season 4 would cover equity and community, I knew that one of the first businesses that I had to include was a childcare center. I’ve worked in early education and have witnessed the struggles that Black childcare directors experience.

Karlisa is the co-owner of Tiny Scholars University and has been advocating for business’ rights, especially after the pandemic. I knew her commitment to the quality of her center was something that we needed to highlight. There are many discriminatory barriers that she and others face, specifically concerning access to capital. According to The Center for Law and Social Policy, Black-owned businesses that apply for loans are nearly 20 percent more likely to be denied. Karlisa was able to share a specific experience in the first 15 minutes of episode one.

Keenan Woods is one of my best friends, as well as the owner of Remarkable Ice. I saw firsthand Keenan’s journey to entrepreneurship. His unique perspective is a phenomenal addition to this conversation. During the episode, you will see that barriers don’t exist to Keenan. His entire theme was how can we re-imagine or “get creative” with solutions. That type of mindset is important when working to build a community that reaches a resolution.

Kourtney Terry is the owner of Taste-T Love Baby Food. I interviewed her in 2020, and our energy was very similar. We’ve kept in touch over the years, and I’ve seen the roller coaster ride of her entrepreneurial journey. In the midst of her rise, she had the most earth-shattering experience. She has without a doubt experienced discrimination in her field. As I reflect on her story, I am reminded about the insidious impact discrimination has on a community, and how this often hidden reality can trip up even well-meaning resource providers.

I met Josh Nalls out in the entrepreneurial scene. I admired his partnership with his family and appreciated his knowledge about the legalities of business. Many business owners are intimidated by legal paperwork. I wanted to have someone with a logistical mindset on the panel as we moved into a conversation of solutions.

Key takeaways

This panel is powerful, but I know that it only reflects a small portion of Black entrepreneurs’ voices. Our conversation about their experiences and possible solutions sets the foundation for the rest of the season. Key questions that arose included:

  • What are we going to do about the deeper issues that Black business owners face?
  • How can the community take said problems into their own hands?
  • How can local resources and organizations help empower the vision that Black entrepreneurs have for themselves?

We can’t wait to deep dive into potential solutions starting with episode 2, which premieres LIVE on YouTube tomorrow at 6pm EST! We hope you will be part of the conversation!

Launch Dayton is thrilled to partner with Te’Jal and her team to produce the final season of What’s the Biz. Stay tuned to socials and our newsletter as episodes drop!