They’ve already raised more than $5 million!
Madison, Wisconsin just launched a fundraising campaign for its Center for Black Excellence, NBC 15 reports.
Black community organizers in Madison, Wisconsin are looking to create a center in the city focused specifically on empowering the Black community. The Center for Black Excellence and Culture will be a first-of-its-kind offering in Madison, spearheaded by CEO and Founder Dr. Alex Gee and a host of Black donors, influencers and community leaders.
Recently, the group launched their public fundraising campaign, already raking in north of $5 million. The organizers gathered to launch the effort as well as announce major milestones for the Center, including floor plans which included a recording studio, multipurpose theater and coworking space. The goal is to inspire the youth and empower the Black community in Madison, creating a space for the arts, networking and the opportunity to learn about the city’s rich history.
“Madison’s Black community has rallied together in a way we’ve never seen before, setting in motion an initiative that is a true reflection of its voice for the key opportunities and experiences that must be developed to support the broad spectrum of opportunities that the Black community needs to thrive. Even in these early stages, we are already witnessing the power of The Center, which is leveraging Blacck talent to create a space that makes the region feel like a true home to the Black community,” said Dr. Gee.
The campaign set a goal of raising $36 million with more than 300 Black donors already putting their money where their mouth is. Another $2 million was gifted by the Summit Credit Union and Congressional Rep. Mark Pocan has earmarked another $1 million in support.
“We chose The Center for this gift because the Black community has made it clear this pivotal effort will provide real, lasting change - and we’re proud to help support this transformative mission,” said Kim Sponem, CEO and President of Summit Credit Union.
According to Madison.com, Gee spoke to attendees at the launch about the significance of the project for the city’s Black residents, making a call for collective unity.
“The Center isn’t a program. It is a solution, and a Black-designed solution that will use cultural expression, history, innovation and leadership development to inoculate ourselves against the stress and cultural isolation that’s killing us and our aspiration. We members of the Black community stand in solidarity to say, ‘We need this now.’ This is our moment. This is a transformational moment,” he said.
The Center for Black Excellence and Culture is scheduled to open its doors in 2023.
To donate to the Center’s campaign, visit their website here.
Photo Courtesy of The Center for Black Excellence & Culture/Madison.com