BE Modern Man is an integrative program that honors the essence, image, and accomplishments of today’s man of color. With features of today’s leaders, executives, creatives, students, politicians, entrepreneurs, professionals, and agents of change—these men share the common thread of creating a new normal while setting the bar in tech, art, philanthropy, business, and beyond. The BE Modern Man is making a positive impact, his way, and has a story to tell.
BE MODERN DAVON CLARK
Name: Davon Clark
Profession: Founder/Owner of ADC Kid (A Davon Clark Kid) a multimedia children’s company
One Word that Describes you: Trailblazer
What does being one of the BEMM 100 Men of Distinction mean to you?
Being one of the BEMM 100 Men of Distinction is truly an honor. When starting my business, I referenced back numerous times to Black Enterprise’s website, whether to get insight, knowledge, or advice from prominent business figures interviewed or inspiration/encouragement to keep on pushing toward the bigger goal. Now, being able to reciprocate that same knowledge to other men/women through this publication is mind-blowing.
What are some examples of how you have turned struggle into success?
I have several examples of how I turned struggles into success. However, I will focus on my journey of becoming a children’s author and how it led to me forming my company ADC Kid. It started with me working in numerous impoverished school districts. Seeing the youth struggle with reading and writing, and losing interest in academics; I decided to write an interactive children’s book The Adventures of Prada Enchilada which helps them identify objects, learn fun facts, and utilize basic math skills all while reading. Once I completed the book, I sent it out to publishing companies, for which I got no responses. Then I sent it over to literary agents, and every email was replied with, “We cannot champion for your work.” Instead of allowing these rejections to push me down, I used it as motivation to push me forward. I took to the streets, phones, and email scheduling free book readings at schools and vending at local events. From there, people started to ask me if I was being sent out to their schools and events through an agency or company. That is when it hit me! Why not develop my own company which I can navigate my own path/future. That is just what I did. I flipped those literary agents’ responses from not championing for my work to creating ADC Kid Champions (those people who did see the value in my work). Now schools, organizations, and more pay for ADC Kid to come in to do live interactive storytelling performances around those same books that were rejected. My goal is to make ADC Kid stand as tall as Disney with production studios, animated cartoons, books, and more. When you have a goal or dream never give up!
What is an important quality you look for in your relationships with others?
What are some of the immediate projects you are working on?
At this moment, I am working on two projects. The first project is the 3rd Annual Children’s Book Festival in Camden, New Jersey. I started this festival three years ago with a young lady named Melica Niccole. At the time we did not know that we were making waves with this particular festival. We had organized the first ever Children’s Book Festival in Camden, (this particular feat had never been accomplished) with the help of local organizations, and we were able to raise funds to not only decorate the festival space, but also giveaway free book bags filled with school supplies, children’s books, and more. Now we are going into our third year with hopes of making a bigger impact in the community around literacy. The second project is developing the first ever children’s educational animation TV series to be helmed by an African American male for a major TV network or VOD platform. This particular venture has not been done, and I aim to be the first with The Adventures of Prada Enchilada series to open that door for others to come. We have plans to launch the crowdfunding campaign Sept 2018. Currently, we have developed our Patreon page ADC Kid. I hope we can gain the support from publications like this and people like you who are reading.
How do you prepare for an important meeting?
When prepping for an important business meeting/event I like to do extensive research around the person, place, or thing. Then write notes/outlines down about said meeting/event on what I need to accomplish before taking on the task.
What advice you have for other men who want to make a difference?
Some advice I have for men who want to make a difference is – First, see what is lacking in your community. And second, try your best not to give up. It may be hard in the beginning, but nothing is impossible. In fact, the word impossible spells: I’M POSSIBLE. Believe in that, keep pushing forward and sooner or late your impact will be felt around the world.
What is your “Extraordinary Impact?”
I believe my “Extraordinary Impact” is not only providing a sense of literacy in the community but also lives within two other endeavors I take up. First, providing homeless people within my community hot meals every holiday (Christmas). My dad and I go purchase hot food from different establishments each year – Boston Market, Lil’ Caesar’s, etc. Then we go around the city of Camden handing out food to the less fortunate (homeless). Second, uplifting incarcerated youth through interactive literacy and writing workshops. I go into jails, prisons, and youth centers with the intentions of helping youth evoke a catharsis or change through writing. I am proud to say through these workshops the youth developed a book called Justice Restored 2.0, A Series of Writings and Poems from Incarcerated Youth last year. We are just touching the surface with what these writings can become and do for people experiencing similar circumstances.
It’s our normal to be extraordinary. Follow @BEModernMan and join the conversation using #BEModernMan.
Come celebrate the BE Modern Man 100 Men of Distinction at the 2nd Annual Black Men XCEL, Aug. 29–Sept. 2, 2018, at PGA National Resort & Spa in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida.