Updates and announcements

Our Juneteenth Message

Today is #Juneteenth 2020. This day is in observation of June 19, 1865, the date on which the last enclave of enslaved Africans, located in Galveston, Texas, learned the US Government had abolished formal chattel slavery nationwide. Aside from various pockets of Africans who continued to be enslaved by rogue slave owners, everyone in the country was now free of formal bondage.

Keyword: formal.

What would ensue after 1865 and well into 2020 would be an informal myriad of continued human rights violations in the form of cons, intimidation, killings, theft, and countless injustices which would form an accrued disadvantage against our people into today. While many of these were informal in their mass coordination, they were nevertheless very systematic and persistent in nature, and hardly ever rebuffed by the government if not outright perpetrated by government.

Today’s most visible elements of that include an ever-growing racial wealth gap, police brutality, and disparate health outcomes, just to name a few. We were brought into this country as the bottom caste in 1619 and are still the bottom caste in 2020, with numerous immigrant groups having arrived and ascended past us. However, that is not our entire story.

Today, what we also have is an undefeatable history of ancestors who are the gold standard for resilience, vision, and love all over the world. It is because of their blood, sweat, and tears that we stand before you today with the ability to post to Facebook, or possibly even create our own Facebook. It is because of them we have the strength to march in the face of militarized police, strive for Black excellence in predominantly white workplaces, and still wake up every day to do it all over again.

So today, on this very critical Juneteenth 2020, we ask all Black Young Professionals to appreciate both the gifts and the wins of our history, and to reflect on what has been tried and what hasn’t. Leverage your creativity and intellect now and going forward to dedicate yourselves to volunteering in the Black community (#Community), connecting with other Black folks (#Social), and learning about Black politics (#Personal).

Community, #Social, and #Personal are the three pillars Black Young Professionals of Metro Detroit was founded on and this is the most important time to keep those in front of us.

With Power and Love,
BYP Detroit

Follow the Money Recap

On February 26th, Black Young Professionals of Metro Detroit teamed up with Maurice Miller and Tylene Henry to host Follow the Money, a financial optimization crash course for young professionals. This event was held at Macomb Community College, and is the first in a series of events tied to the financial well-being of young Black professionals.

Due to extreme weather conditions, some registered audience members were unable to safely travel to the event. In light of this, the entire event was recorded and is now available below. Some extraneous elements of the discussion were removed for brevity. Additionally, the PowerPoint slide deck created by Black Young Professionals is also below for your reference.

We won’t say a whole lot, because we have the entire audio transcript, but some of the more interesting topics touched on are listed below. Listen to the full discussion for actual context and details:

  • Black wealth, overall, is headed toward zero.
  • Income is not wealth.
  • Wealth transfers should be taken seriously and preserved when possible. Talk with those you stand to inherit from about their life insurance policies and their will.
  • The stock market is a leading indicator, everything else follows.
  • Each person’s healthcare coverage needs vary based on their personal situation at that point in time in their life, including HSA strategies.
  • Not everyone is making the traditional 20% down payment on their first home, and it may not be necessary or most appropriate, even if it means private mortgage insurance (PMI) may be required.
  • Employer-sponsored retirement accounts

… and more!

Please feel free to reach out to our subject matter experts Maurice and Tylene using their contact information below.

Maurice E. Miller Jr. CFP®
Wealth Management Adviser
p: (248) 331-2538 
Mass Mutual Bio Page

Tylene L. Henry, MBA
Financial Adviser
p: (248) 357-7600
Mass mutual Bio Page

Listen to the Event Audio

Download the Slides

Paint: Detroit II Recap

On February 23, 2020, we held our second annual Paint: Detroit event at the downtown Detroit location of Painting with a Twist. Many of the Painting with a Twist studios in metro Detroit, including the downtown location, are Black-owned. The downtown location is especially impactful as it is in one of the few Black-owned buildings in downtown Detroit.

For 2020 we made some changes, including an increased number of prizes and raffle tickets given to each guest, and the inclusion of a dedicated DJ, in addition to our host and master of ceremonies.

Our master of ceremonies, Fatimah Muhammad, was joined at the prize table by director Kevin Jackson, and mentorship lead Tim Ogunbekun (far end of table).

This event serves as a fundraiser for the organization and also brings awareness to Detroit’s culture through music and products. All gifts were Detroit themed or focused items made by Detroit-based companies including Detroit vs. Everbody and Detroit Vineyards. All music played featured Detroit-based artists.

Below you will find the official event playlist of music rebuilt on YouTube so you can also enjoy some visuals and listen unlimited for free.

This is a playlist of 32 songs

With a well-attended event, we had a lot of photos taken by Gary North Images.
Check out a few of them below, and feel free to see the full gallery on our Facebook page beginning March 17th.