Deep down in the hearts of many Black Americans, there is an undeserving feeling and dysfunctional relationship with money. Those outlooks, often tied to a family’s unstable history with budgeting, saving, and investing are usually the result of systematic challenges that include, but are not limited to; employment, labor, and housing discrimination. Unfortunately, a mix of these adversities have set some poor financial cycles in motion. When trying to secure money feels like a burden, what you will find in many Black communities is a feeling of despair. Sadly, not being able to envision, much less map a solid financial future makes conversations about inheritance, insurance, wills, ownership, and generational wealth not only challenging but hard to approach.
However, a new generation of African-Americans are closing the books on those chapters and focusing on Black progress, revitalization, and financial wellness. That undeserving feeling which has plagued Black Americans historically is moving into a worthy space.
For younger Black Americans, optimism may be warranted. Prospects appear brighter for younger Black Americans, based on their income levels and earning potential. Nearly half of higher-income Black households surveyed are Gen X, for example, while less than one in five are Baby Boomers. Among the general population, the reverse is true: Boomers accounted for 42% of higher-income households and Millennials only 24%.
From barbershops to college courtyards, African-Americans are discussing Black prosperity and the best ways to merge past economic achievements with the present. Ready to not only create but relive a story that has been done before, there is proof that African Americans are willing and capable to have a holistic and healthy relationship with money, as evidenced by Black businessmen and women in history who have made powerful business moves with limited resources and host of adversities.
Prudential and Urban One explore the rebirth by tapping into three Black epicenters; Detroit, Michigan, Tulsa, Oklahoma, and Atlanta, Georgia through the lives of three women in different phases of their own financial well-being. Although their journeys are uniquely individualistic, each woman is learning about the importance of having honest conversations about what legacy looks like in their lives. Residing in these Black meccas which have been credited for cultivating economic movements such as Black Wall Street and Black Bottom these women are living examples of what it means to reimagine history.
Featured in Legacy Lives On is Onikah Asamoa-Caesar who was so touched by the impact that Black Wall Street had on Black culture that she wanted to revitalize it even if it meant she would be further in debt. We also meet Audrey Hurst, a mother of three who is dedicated to providing for her family and is honest that with her new inheritance she needs to ask for help on how to really expand the gift so it can be passed down for generations to come. Lastly, we encounter Jewel Burks-Soloman, a young woman from Atlanta who made her millions before thirty and understands that knowledge has so much value, so she is passing on her legacy to other women.
The stories that unfold and the images captured in Legacy Lives On are profound because they are truthful. Join in on the dialogue by watching the full documentary of Legacy Lives On presented by Prudential and Urban One.
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