Mr. Graves founded Black Enterprise magazine in 1970 with a $175,000 loan. From there, Graves built a platform to include, educate, and create conversation with African American business enthusiasts. Being an entrepreneur himself, Graves encouraged young Black men and women to enter the field full stride.
He led by example, taking hold of the reins in every way. Graves created a market for Black business expertise and activism, sending Black Enterprise to Black ministers, politicians, and business folk gratuitously to ‘spread the word’. The magazine, with sponsors such as Pfizer, recently successfully completed 50 years of being in business and receives over 2 million visitors monthly. The New York Times acclaims Black Enterprise as being a combination of Forbes, Money, and Fortune publications.
Graves also was author of the New York Times Bestseller “How to Succeed in Business Without Being White: Straight Talk on Making it in America,” a book teaching skills on networking, seizing opportunities, and increasing one’s wealth. The bestseller advocated for equality and making one’s own position in the workplace, “The white-dominated business world needs to understand that we don’t want charity. We want to do business. We don’t want guaranteed success. We want the opportunity to earn it.”