Leading The Pack

From high technology to publishing, b.e.'s small business award winners are pushing their companies to new levels

out with $7,000 from two previous business ventures, plus loans from friends and family, James’ resourcefulness led her to successfully approach the Rev. Al Sharpton for ad revenue.

“I want Blackgirl to become the voice for black girls worldwide,” says James. With more than 4,500 subscribers, James is encouraged by the responses she receives from young women across the country who proclaim that Blackgirl has improved their self-esteem.

Over the last two years, James has been featured in The New York Times and Essence magazine. She has also made appearances on 106 and Park, Teen Summit, and The Oprah Winfrey Show. Driven to positively affirm black girls, she insists that if teens have a dream they should “take the first step.”

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