Category Archives: policy

Economic Justice: What Can We Do for OUR Communities?

Loaded question right? Many of you may have read my first blog on this issue in August when my legislative office and my non-profit hosted an event on “Economic Justice: How To Use Our Dollars to Make Sense”. The issue was the almost $2 Trillion, with a “T”, in spending power in the black community and how to leverage that power to accelerate social justice. It’s my theory that leveraging the universal language of money can speed up social justice reform towards minorities in this country—all we have to do is come up with a plan and stick together to make it happen!

We had a lively discussion with panelists about the issues facing the black community with respect to economic parity and what preliminary steps we can take individually and as a community to address those issues. Over 60 individuals came to hear from the panel and there was a united conclusion to continue the conversation. We had a diversity of opinions, backgrounds, professional careers and visions for how to accomplish this enormous task. My non-profit, Minority Access to Capital, Inc., is committed to answering that call on the business side and I am committed as a policy maker to address those issues from a community and policy standpoint. Together we CAN and we WILL insight and inspire change but we need your help. Can we count on it?

If your answer is “Yes”, that time has arrived! I am pleased to announce that my office and non-profit are answering the call for ACTION ITEMS and a PLAN for how we can tackle the issue of economic justice in our communities. See below and join me at either or both events! *I will not be at the event on Nov. 17th as I have a conflicting event related to my legislative duties that will take me out of town.

AND……

On behalf of the Board of Directors of Minority Access to Capital, Inc., I hope to see some of you soon!

**************************************************************************I am Dar’shun Kendrick, Private Securities Attorney and Owner of Kendrick Law Practicehelping businesses raise capital the LEGAL way. We work with “for profit” companies seeking to raise $250,000 or more through private capital (including crowdfunding) that have a line item budgeted for legal services. We do NOT find investors or introduce companies to investors; that is the job of “broker-dealers” and we are prohibited under federal securities law from doing so.  I have 2 B.A.s from Oglethorpe University, a law degree from the University of Georgia and an M.B.A. from Kennesaw State University. View past and upcoming speaking engagements and request me to speak to your organization. I have been elected to the Georgia House of Representatives (East DeKalb/South Gwinnett) since 2011 and I serve on the committees of Juvenile Justice, Interstate Cooperation, Judiciary Non-Civil and as the ranking Democrat on the Small Business and Job Creation Committee.

You may be interested in my non-profit organization as well to EDUCATE and EMPOWER minorities called Minority Access to Capital, Inc. Please visit our website to learn about events and sign up for our enewsletter.

We are ONLY authorized to practice law in Georgia and therefore any legal advice in this blog only pertains to Georgia based businesses. Please visit us online to sign up for a time to discuss services or for our 1 hour consultation.

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Filed under non-profit, policy, private debt, private equity

Economic Justice: How to Use Our Dollars to Make Change (Sept. 8th, join us)

It’s been a little while since I wrote a blog post. Last time I wrote one, I was chairing an ad hoc committee made up of my collegues from the Georgia House of Representatives—House members from both the Economic Development committee and Small Business and Job Creation committee where I serve as the ranking Democrat. The purpose of the committee

was to hold hearings in metro Atlanta to discuss ways to improve our investment environment in Georgia to make it easier for investors, individuals and institutional, to invest in Georgia based businesses and for businesses to receive private investment funds. (Report from Private Investment Policy Focus Group, June 2016)

Now I want to turn to a more specific topic—economic justice for minorities, particularly African Americans. You see, I happen to be a African American woman that works in the capital markets industry, practicing securities law (which is a fancy word for “I help companies that want to raise millions of dollars to start or grow their business). I have seen where the almost $1.2 Trillion in private capital funds over the last 10 years has went—and you’ll be shocked to know 95% of it did NOT go to minority owned companies. As a matter of fact, minority firms are lagging behind in a few areas due to capital disparities. (Source)

It has been reported that black spending power for 2016 will reach $1.2 Trillion and reach $1.4 Trillion by 2020, a 275% INCREASE from black spending power since 1990. (Source) But here is the question:  What are we going to do with all this black spending “power” if we don’t use it? Just look at the number of U.S. minority owned firms and the economic contributions we have made to this nation.

Over the past few years, most of the politicians, speaking heads and activists have focused on social justice given the unarmed black man shootings that have occurred throughout the country. And rightly so! But I implore and ask anyone reading this post to stop and consider my theory: I believe that 1) We cannot talk about social justice without talking about economic justice at the same time and 2) the path to social justice, I believe, will come faster and smoother if we focus on economic justice issues. No one has to agree with me—I am just telling you my thoughts. And the reason for my theory is something that I have learned over the 8 years I have been practicing corporate law, meeting with those who have millionaire dollar net worths or access to millions, attending events where capital is being distributed, patronizing black businesses and talking with blacks with high net worths and disposable income and serving almost 7 years as a member of the Georgia legislature: Money is the universal language of mankind. A black man’s currency has the same worth as a white man’s. So if we are to catch the attention of those that are violating our social and civil rights—-speak with the almighty dollar and watch who listens, how fast they listen and the call for change. Again, my theory. No one has to agree.

That being said, let’s start to have the discussion around how to empower and support black businesses, how to communicate information among our community without fear of some other person of color of getting ahead of us and learn how to create generational wealth to leave to our children and families. I invite you all to participate in this discussion with me at Emory on Sept. 8th along with a dynamic moderator and great group of panelists (We will even have a reception before hand for networking.)

See panelist bios

RSVP HERE (Limited spaces!)

I hope you can join me for a GREAT discussion.

*******************************************************************************************

I am Dar’shun Kendrick, Private Securities Attorney and Owner of Kendrick Law Practicehelping businesses raise capital the LEGAL way. We work with “for profit” companies seeking to raise $250,000 or more through private capital (including crowdfunding) that have a line item budgeted for legal services. We do NOT find investors or introduce companies to investors; that is the job of “broker-dealers” and we are prohibited under federal securities law from doing so.  I have 2 B.A.s from Oglethorpe University, a law degree from the University of Georgia and an M.B.A. from Kennesaw State University. View past and upcoming speaking engagements and request me to speak to your organization. I have been elected to the Georgia House of Representatives (East DeKalb/South Gwinnett) since 2011 and I serve on Juvenile Justice, Judiciary Non-Civil and as the ranking Democrat on the Small Business and Job Creation Committee.

You may be interested in my non-profit organization as well to EDUCATE and EMPOWER minorities:

We are ONLY authorized to practice law in Georgia and therefore any legal advice in this blog only pertains to Georgia based businesses. Please visit us online to sign up for a time to discuss services or for our 1 hour consultation.

Follow us on social media:  

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Filed under policy, private equity

The Future of Private Investing in Georgia: Fitting All the Pieces Together

Last week, on March 31st, I was honored to chair my first ad hoc committee meeting of the Georgia House of Representatives, where I have served since 2011. As a member of the minority party, you can imagine how many times I get the opportunity to chair a meeting but this is a space where I am not only comfortable, but possess a particular expertise in this subject matter: private capital. This is what I do….help companies with the legal compliance and agreements needed for successful capital raises and keep the S.E.C. and state governments off their back.

This ad hoc committee came out of an idea I had the last few days of the 2016 Georgia legislative session in which I saw the need to have a series of public hearings to discuss private investing in Georgia and how to make it easier to invest in Georgia. My first thoughts were just to update the existing Georgia securities code, which have not been updated since 2008 since there are various federal laws and regulations that have been passed in recent months. But then  I decided that since I am going to open the Georgia securities code, I may as well take testimony and hear some innovative ways to move private capital into Georgia (and away from neighboring states but shhhh…don’t tell them I said that.) You see…it all works together…the securities code…the regulations from the Securities and Exchange Commission…rules and regulations from the GA Secretary of State..the state budget. Everything works together and we didn’t need any missing pieces to this puzzle of encouraging capital investments in Georgia. So I wanted to make sure that didn’t happen….and I’m on a one woman mission to make sure that doesn’t happen as you can see from my upcoming speaking schedule.

Being the stubborn lawyer-legislator that I am, I decided to approach the Chair of the Small Business Development and Job Creation committee Chairman Bubber Epps where I serve as the ranking Democrat on that committee. I also approached the Chair of the Economic Development & Tourism committee Chairman Ron Stephens. These seemed like the most logical committees to ask to go down this complex road of capital investments in Georgia and luckily, they both agreed that it was a good idea and agreed to let me chair the meeting since this is the type of work I do for my “day job”. So an ad hoc committee was appointed from these two committees that included the brightest minds in the Georgia House: Reps. Stacey Evans, Buzz Brockway, Steve Tarvin, Al Williamsmyself, and Chairmen Ron Stephens and Bubber Epps.

The Gwinnett Chamber of Commerce hosted the first public hearing of this ad hoc committee. I choose the Gwinnett Chamber because I not only represent South Gwinnett but the Gwinnett Chamber has been an innovative organization committed to developing the whole entrepreneur (see flyer to left). I’m happy they were able to partner with us for this important topic.

And so we met last week at the beautiful building in Duluth that houses the Gwinnett Chamber of Commerce and the public hearing lasted about 1.5 hours as we discussed everything from intrastate crowdfunding, updating the Georgia securities code, investments through the university system, etc. The room was filled with those that were interested in private capital, those that had invested their own private capital into businesses, those seeking private capital and those that regulate (the Secretary of State’s Securities Division) and legislative private capital (members of the committee).

The Gwinnett Post wrote a brief overview of the hearing in this article that was posted a day later. Below are some specific highlights/bullet points from the hearing and you can also view the YouTube video I uploaded to my YouTube channel (feel free to subscribe to my channel.)

  • From Noula Zaharis, the Secretary of State’s Securities Division: Georgia has some of the most “reasonable” fees in the nation, has one of the simplest processes for intrastate crowdfunding (a 2 page form), and in October of 2015, raised the Invest Georgia Exemption from $1MM to $5MM.
  • From Dan King, Member of Gwinnett Tech Angels, an affiliate of Atlanta Tech Angels: One possible reason why only 2% of the angel investor tax credit is being used is because of the number of companies that qualify and take advantage of the tax credit for its investors, for example a $1MM raise is the cap for company qualification; the average deal for a company depends on many factors but can range anywhere between $1-$1.5MM (in response to my question about the Invest Georgia Fund which is scheduled to be allocated $100M up to FY 2018 but currently only has $10MM in funding)
  • From Heather Maxfield with Technology Association of Georgia: The SBIR Program (Congressional Fund) is matched in other states and Georgia should seriously consider doing the same.
  • From Delray Wannemacher of First Look Equities: His company is looking for qualifies companies; portals are required for federal crowdfunding but not for IGE.

If you are interested in this subject matter and want to be on the list for our next public hearing, please email me atdkendrick@kendrickforgeorgia.com, SUBJECT: Private Investing in Georgia. Stay tuned as we come up with GREAT opportunities to invest in Georgia!

***************************************************************************

I am Dar’shun Kendrick, Private Securities Attorney and Owner of Kendrick Law Practicehelping businesses raise capital the LEGAL way. We work with “for profit” companies seeking to raise $250,000 or more through private securities (equity and/or debt) that have a line item budgeted for legal services. We do NOT find investors or introduce companies to investors; that is the job of “broker-dealers” and we are prohibited under federal securities law from doing so.  I have 2 B.A.s from Oglethorpe University, a law degree from the University of Georgia and an M.B.A. from Kennesaw State University. View past and upcomingspeaking engagements and request me to speak to your organization.

You may be interested in my non-profit organization as well to EDUCATE and EMPOWER minorities:

We are ONLY authorized to practice law in Georgia and therefore any legal advice in this blog only pertains to Georgia based businesses. Please visit us online to sign up for a time to discuss services or for our 1 hour consultation.

Follow us on social media:  

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Twitter
Facebook
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Filed under entrepreneurship, Georgia, Georgia law, investor relations, policy, private debt, private equity, securities