VALENCE NEWS By Team Valence May 12, 2021

Black Success Built Together

We had a great time launching BONDS with nearly 500 of you on May 6th.

We’re thrilled we got to share such a momentous occasion with our Valence members and partners, and we encourage you to learn more and join the waitlist for BONDS here.

Here are some notable takeaways from the event:

  • Hans Tung, Managing Partner at GGV Capital, & Tracy Reneé Williams, VP of Learning & Development at Valence, discussed the purpose of BONDS and how it will assist emerging Black executives on their journey to becoming business and cultural leaders.
  • Jacqueline Adams of J Adams Strategic Communications LLC and Bonita Stewart, Vice President, Global Partnerships at Google, talked about an evolving Black workplace. “Our people have a history of making a way out of no way...29% of Black women have said that they have a business they created and run in their spare time. We could be witnessing the Great Migration 2.0.”
  • James Lowry, Black business icon and Advisor at Valence & BCG, sat down with Brandon Gayle, Executive Vice President of Revenue, Brand & Communications at Spurs Sports and Entertainment, and Courtenay Brown, Reporter at Axios, to discuss the ways in which business has changed over the years. "Within a two-year period of time, we increased the number of Black employees at our company from 4 to 104. We proved by looking at it differently and working with the partners that had the power, you can effect change in these corporations, but you gotta deal with the givens and think boldly about how you're going to do it. Reinforce [this] on an office by office basis — an industry by industry basis — that we are part of this! We can't work in silence anymore. We have all these corporations who want to do the right thing. Let's take advantage of this opening and run like hell and really change the culture for people of color." — James Lowry
  • The President of SHRM, Johnny C. Taylor, spoke to Valence CEO Guy Primus about the importance of Black success and inclusion in corporate America. “If you believe what all the CEOs are saying right now, which is: ‘we got to get this diversity thing right,’ then you have to focus on it. It’s not about taking something away or excluding anybody, it’s about solving a fundamental problem...we’ve had this racial reckoning and you’ve got to address it.”
  • Meena Harris, Founder of Phenomenal, and Valence co-founder & GP at Upfront Ventures, Kobie Fuller, discussed the current economic climate. “I could have benefited from Bonds when I was starting out. Having a supportive community, finding people who will help you on your journey, and be good advisors for you — we need to have more formal structured ways of doing that.”
  • Derek Andersen, CEO of Bevy, a software for virtual conferences and community events that raised $40M in their most recent fundraising round, met with Kobie Fuller, Co-Founder at Valence & GP at Upfront Ventures, to talk about active allyship. “This is one of those rare times where the right thing to do and the most profitable thing are the same things.”

We’re energized by cross-sector interest from corporate leaders, venture capital firms, and private equity organizations in having their Black colleagues participate in BONDS. We are also enthusiastic about the stellar group of leading executives who, with a variety of ethnic, cultural, and professional backgrounds, have committed to participating as a BONDS Beacon to guide our members throughout their journey. Over the coming years, it will be exciting and rewarding for us to witness the growth and impact of BONDS—and its members.

If you share our enthusiasm, consider sponsorship of a BONDS member, and join our waitlist here.

— Team Valence