This week on The Urban Business Roundtable, UBR Contributor Renita D. Young talks with David L. Steward, the founder and chairman of Maryland Heights, Mo.-based World Wide Technology Inc. (WWT), the nation’s largest Black-owned business. With 2010 revenues of more than $3.3 billion, WWT is ranked No. 1 on the Black Enterprise 100s list of the nation’s largest Black-owned industrial/service companies.
Steward, who grew up in rural Missouri, spent his early career in jobs including working for the Missouri Pacific Railroad Company and as an account executive with Federal Express. Then, in 1990, he created WWT, a leading systems integrator and the leading supplier of advanced technology solutions to the U.S. government. The company offers products from more than 3,000 manufacturers from around the world and ranks as one of the leading Cisco Systems partners in the country. Steward is also the author of Doing Business By The Good Book: 52 Lessons on Success Straight From The Bible. (Hyperion)
Also, UBR Contributor Teria Seah sits down with speaker and life coach Pamela Mitchell, the author of The 10 Laws of Career Reinvention: Essential Survival Skills for Any Economy (Dutton Adult). The founder and CEO of The Reinvention Institute, an organization devoted to individual transformation, Mitchell has appeared on The Today Show and her expertise has been featured in Black Enterprise, as well as the Wall Street Journal, BusinessWeek, and Men’s Health.
In addition, in my “Alfred’s Notepad” segment, I continue my ongoing crusade against “the hook-up:” the expectation of some Black people, especially family and friends, of Black entrepreneurs to provide free goods and services just because they are of the same race and/or are related. Money has to circulate in order for economic empowerment to happen and for Black entrepreneurs survive and thrive. I again urge people to support Black enterprise not buy looking for the hook-up, but by showing up and paying up.
And finally, every week on UBR, you’ll get motivation and inspiration from author and entrepreneurial icon Farrah Gray, a weekly wrap-up of business news from USA Today business correspondent Charisse Jones, our Patient Investor Report from Ariel Investments and key economic intelligence for small business owners from our UBR economists Derrick Collins and Rasheed Carter.
If you have a question you want answered or a topic you want addressed on The Urban Business Roundtable, connect with me at BE Insider, the social media network for people who are serious about Black Enterprise. You can also find me on Twitter and Facebook.
Alfred Edmond Jr. is the senior VP/editor-at-large of Black Enterprise and the host of the Urban Business Roundtable, a weekly radio show, sponsored by Ariel Investments, airing CST Wednesdays at 8:30 a.m., Thursdays at 6:30 p.m. and Saturdays at 9:30 a.m. on WVON-AM 1690, the Talk of Chicago. You can also listen live online at WVON.com. Check back each week for UBR Spotlight, which features additional resources, advice and information from and about the topics, entrepreneurs and experts featured on the show.