More than 115 local business community leaders joined together to discuss ways to create a more inclusive, open and diverse business community – the first in a series of discussions planned on the topic by the Downtown Council of the JAX Chamber.

The Downtown Council hosted “Race and its Economic Effects on Jacksonville” virtually Wednesday, July 8. The event was a panel discussion with local business and community leaders discussing race and what business can do to affect positive change.

Are you interested in creating a more diverse and inclusive Jacksonville business community? Consider joining the Downtown Council.

Event panelists

Kemal Gasper, VyStar Credit Union @Work Financial Wellness Program manager
Whitney Meyer, Chief Diversity Officer and Vice President for the University of North Florida
Nwabufo “Obi” Umunna, founder and managing partner of Ummunna Legal Group
Aundra Wallace, JaxUSA Partnership president
Ellen Wiss, READ USA co-founder

Ben Alcorn, ServPro Mandarin, Jacksonville Beach/Ponte Vedra and St. Augustine general manager and Downtown Council board member, moderated the event.


Big Brothers Big Sisters of Northeast Florida
United Way of Northeast Florida ALICE Report
“Poverty is concentrated in neighborhoods” by Darnell Smith
904ward Race Cards
Why You Should Care Podcast

Feedback & Coverage

Jacksonville Daily Record: Business leaders discuss ‘Race and its Economic Effects on Jacksonville’

Jacksonville Business Journal: Diversity, inclusion and being an ally: Jacksonville business leaders discuss challenges

“This conversation was very insightful.”

Kimano Edwards, State Attorney’s Office 4th Judicial Circuit

“Such a great panel discussion! Thanks to everyone for such an insightful conversation.”

Wanda Willis, Director of Community Development, the Cummer Museum of Art & Gardens


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