8 Black Women Taking Industries By Storm — Meet The Change-Makers


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March is Women's History Month and we'd be remiss if we didn't shine a light on the Black women who are running things right now. Black women are not only running businesses, we're launching apps to create effective solutions for our communities, curating stunning spaces, leading global enterprises, and so much more.

Despite experiencing oppression in securing capital, hiring practices, and more, Black women continue to push the envelope in business, sports, tech, the arts and just about everything you can think of. As industry leaders, these eight women are blazing pathways for future generations to dream bigger and go further.

Get to know these 8 game-changing Black women below.

Brehanna Daniels
First Black Woman NASCAR Pit Crew Member

Daniels made history in 2016, becoming the first Black woman to join a NASCAR pit crew. The 28-year-old Virginia Beach native and Norfolk State University alumna made her Daytona 500 debut in 2019.

"God couldn't have pick anybody else better to do the job," Daniels said last year.

Dominique King
Founder, I Heart My HBCU

King, a graduate of Howard University, witnessed the massive fundraising efforts alumni and supporters did to keep the historic Bennett College open. In response, the Houston native founded I Heart My HBCU, an app that utilizes spare change technology to donate to HBCUs across the country.

"This app is a way for us to support institutions that were made for us," King told the Black Information Network in an interview, "and to preserve their legacies, and is also a way to network and connect."

Claudia Steer
Creative design extraordinaire, Founder of NW10 Interiors

Steer is the creative genius behind the immaculate interior design of Issa Rae's South Central, Los Angeles Airbnb. Steer describes her thinking as "creative as its core" and has built a career of developing retail strategies for Fortune 500 brands.

"Many designers become known for a particular aesthetic but I don't really identify with one style; I don't believe anyone neatly fits into any box," Steer's website says. "Plus, breaking rules is where the magic resides."

Nicole Alesi
Founder of Nicole Marie Paperie

Finding the right greeting card can be hard, so Nicole Alesi founded NMP to make the choice a little easier –– and fun. The NYC-based company offers eco-friendly paper options, fashion pens, and more for those special occasions.

Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala
Director General of the World Trade Organization

Okonjo-Iweala made history in 2021, becoming the first woman and first African to head the world's top trade organization. The economist was formerly the Finance Minister of Nigeria and spent 25 years at the World Bank.

"The WTO ... needs a fresh look, a fresh face, an outsider, someone with the capability to implement reforms and to work with members of the WTO comes out of partial paralysis that it's in," Okonjo-Iweala said in an interview last year.

Mahisha Dellinger
Founder, CURLS

Dellinger is a California native who founded CURLS, a natural haircare company in 2002. In addition to her company, Dellinger penned a book, Against All Odds: From the Projects to the Penthouse, documenting her journey to success.

Aimee Allison
Founder, She the People

She the People is a national network of Black women and other women of color who are organizers, voters, activists, and elected officials who are changing the scope of American politics. In 2019, She the People founder Aimee Allison organized the first presidential forum for women of color in 2019.

"Our work is to love our own and others, to make justice the law of the land, to create a country where everyone belongs, and to make this American democracy live up to its greatest potential," her website says.

Dominique Morriseau
Playwright, MacArthur 'Genius Grant' Winner

A native of Detroit, Dominique Morriseau is the playwright behind Skeleton Crew, Detroit '67, Blood at the Root, and more works that chronicle African American life. She is a graduate of the University of Michigan, and the 2018 MacArthur Genius Grant Winner.

On how her beloved native Detroit influences her work, Morriseau told One Hundred podcast host Ed Gordon:

"Growing up in Detroit for me, was seeing myself reflected at every level of excellence ... Detroit was predominately Black growing up and Black folks were running everything," she added. They were running the police department, they were your firefighters, your boards, they were your everything. I saw reflections of everything I could be all over."

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