The Rainbow PUSH Coalition’s “Creating Opportunity Conference” in Atlanta was once again a powerful example of our community coming together to support and recognize the people and organizations that support us while educating and informing us of how we can continue to move our collective agenda forward.
A theme throughout the conference was “Freedom is not equality.” We are free to spend our money at any place we like, but not equal when it comes to employment, wealth or income. My favorite quote from the Rev. Jackson is “Effort and excellence matter; inheritance and access matter more.”
Award winners at the breakfast were honored for the outstanding work that they are doing. There was also a panel consisting of Moanica Caston (VP of diversity at Georgia Power) and Keith Parker (CEO of MARTA) where panelists discussed the existing and upcoming opportunities to do business with their companies.
Attorney Janice Mathis, director of PUSH Atlanta, brought together an extremely powerful panel on diversity in contracting immediately after breakfast. The panel gave attendees valuable advice and information on doing business with their organizations. Consumers need to make sure we are supporting those organizations that come out and foster economic fairness and opportunity for our community. On the panel were SylvesterJohnson (Home Depot), Terrez Thompson (Coca-Cola), moderator Johnnie Booker (retired, Coca-Cola), Ferdinand Risco (MARTA), Kimberly King (Georgia Department of Transportation), Karmetria Burton (Delta Airlines), and Joel Stenson (UPS). Joining to represent the concerns of minority businesses on the panel was John Rogers, founder of Ariel Investments, the country’s leading African American investment banking company.