Events Past

Reflection on past events

😎 Summer Charity Social Wrap-up ☀️

On July 27th, Black Young Professionals of Metro Detroit and the Detroit Black Affinity Professionals hosted our first annual summer charity social  “Give back, Kick Back.” The event was held at 3fifty Terrace in Downtown Detroit with 100% of net proceeds to benefit a selected Detroit-based non-profit charitable organization focused on the community each year. This year’s beneficiary was Building Better Men, a non-profit organization which aims to mentor and empower young men to be leaders in their communities. Building Better Men hosts workshops throughout metropolitan Detroit. Founder, Odis Bellinger has made it his mission to teach young men leadership skills such as taking ownership of themselves and being accountable and conflict resolution — giving them the tools they need to rise above their circumstances and raise to any occasion and perform.

With nine Black professional associations under one roof, or should we say on top of the roof, the evening provided ample opportunity for attendees to network and learn about each association. There was also live music and entertainment. The most entertaining event of the night had to be watching our Giant Jenga players! Much respect is due to each player; their talent and endurance in the face of great adversity (the wind) was truly admirable.

It is always a pleasure to co-host events with all of Detroit’s Black Affinity Professionals associations. It is our hope that everyone enjoyed themselves, made meaningful connections with other Black professionals, and learned about one more community organization that is making an impact on the quality of life for hundreds in Detroit. Last but definitely not least, we want to thank all of our sponsors and all who attended for their support, as well as 3Fifty Terrace for hosting us.

Black Associations represented:

  • Wolverine Bar Association (WBA)
  • National Black MBA Association Detroit Chapter (NBMBAA)
  • National Black Data Processing Associates – Detroit Chapter (BDPA-Detroit)
  • National Society of Black Engineers Detroit Professionals (NSBE)
  • National Association of African Americans in Human Resources (NAAAHR)
  • National Association of Black Accountants (NABA)
  • National Association of Minority Consulting Engineers (NAMCE)
  • Urban Financial Services Coalition – Detroit Chapter (UFSC Detroit)

Big thank you to Catering Society for the wonderful heavy hors d’oeuvres. And as well, we owe a significant thank you to our photographer, Charles Kennedy!

🚴Riding for the Most Vulnerable in Detroit

On August 5, 2018, Black Young Professionals of Detroit continued its long-standing partnership with the Neighborhood Service Organization (NSO) and supported yet another successful year of its annual event, Handle Bars for the Homeless (H4H). Each year has been well attended and this year was no exception. Riders came from all over Southeast Michigan to support NSO’s mission to provide critical services and empower the community’s most vulnerable.

What was once a huge undertaking for us, now runs like a well-oiled machine. We would not be able to execute without our amazing volunteers. Each year, our volunteers come through and never disappoint. We especially want to thank everyone for supporting us despite the unbearable heat! This year’s H4H had to be the hottest on record.

Over the last few years, it has been exciting to witness the growth of Black Young Professionals of Detroit. Events like H4H are great indicators of our progress as an organization and as individuals. This year was a prime example of the leadership amongst our members. Volunteers were not just idly led; they took ownership and made sure there were no gaps in continuity and no tasks left unfinished. The organization and leadership shown throughout the weekend was definitely a source of pride. We hope to see you next year!

If you would like to volunteer with Black Young Professionals at any of our future community service activities, sign-up for membership now, and also follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

To learn more about the Neighborhood Service Organization, visit their website at

Women’s Brunch

On Sunday, June 24th, Black Young Professionals, in partnership with Women of Distinction, hosted Brunch & Blazers, a ladies only event where attendees discussed what it means to be a woman in the workplace. The event was held at Red Dunn Kitchen, which is attached to the Trumbull-Porter hotel, just outside of Corktown in Detroit. We are always excited to reach different audiences by collaborating with other organizations, and Women of Distinction was the perfect partner for this event — brunch and conversation are their bread and butter! Women of Distinction hosts a brunch every month; aiming to provide a positive and empowering space for women to share their goals and learn from others.

The ladies did not disappoint, everyone looked great in their blazers — in hue, after each gorgeous hue! The overarching theme was equity for women in the workplace, while the underlying theme was solidarity. Each attendee was given a green asymmetrical ribbon to wear on their lapels. The asymmetry of the ribbon symbolizes the pay disparities between women and men. According to this Huffington Post article, white women are paid about 20 percent less than men. Sadly, women of color fare worst by a considerable amount. Black women are paid 40 percent less than men, while our Latina sisters are paid 45 percent less. During brunch, we broke out into groups for discussion. Breaking into smaller groups allowed everyone the opportunity to dig deeper and participate.

After the breakout group discussions, we were delighted to have founder of Jackets for Jobs, Ms. Alison Vaughn join us. We all have had or will have moments that will define us. Ms. Vaughn’s moment came when she learned her sister had cancer. The cancer proved to be terminal; her sister succumbed to her illness just six months after announcing to Ms. Vaughn that she was living with the disease. As Ms. Vaughn was dealing with the heartbreak of losing her sister as well as still repairing the wound left by losing her father who passed not too long before her sister, she worked tirelessly to get her sister’s affairs in order and plan her funeral. While making arrangements, she discovered that her sister was a recipient of public assistance. Learning this made her think about the quality of life her sister endured and what opportunities may or may not have been available to her. Ms. Vaughn turned tragedy and adversity into purpose. Her story was a call to action to help other women in similar circumstances.

Jackets for Jobs assists women and men in need of clothing for interviews. Every $50.00 Jackets for Jobs receives in donations, means one suit and a second chance for either a woman or man. Our event registration fee was a donation to Jackets for Jobs, which also has amazing volunteer opportunities. You can interact with jobseekers by helping them pick out clothing and giving them words of encouragement for their interviews.

If you are interested in donating dry-cleaned and ironed mens or womens clothing fit for interviewing to Jackets for Jobs, please click here to learn more.

If you would like to learn more about and/or connect with our event partners, please feel free to click on the links below: