In 2020 we saw a surge in support of black owned businesses, and with this surge came a need for a place where consumers could find black owned businesses that offered products and services near them. While business owners could list their businesses in a more streamlined manner than the plethora of social media groups that have been created in recent months. That’s exactly what Donovan Bridgeforth, Ceo and app developer and his team, Stephon Malone of Bank Black U.S.A., public relations expert Ashawnte Polk, Jonathan Tyler television expert have done with The Official Black App. This app is a running directory of black owned businesses across diverse industries. This easy to navigate app is essential as lysol spray during this pandemic, but after recently being named to Google’s top 100 list and Apple’s top 25 paid business apps. Unlike lysol spray it’s clear that people aren’t having a hard time finding it. The Black App itself isn’t a fly by night inception, it is the culmination of Bridgeforth’s political science and legal studies educational background, coupled with his love for technology and innovation. Knowing how people and communities are building and growing launched the idea of The Official Black App in 2016.
Bridgeforth, a father of two young boys, didn’t wait to perfect the app and sit on his idea as many creatives often do, instead he chose to take heed to his own advice that he gives others interested in the tech industry as well as creatives looking to start something new. “Dive in head first, don’t tip toe into technology, get the first version out because it will eventually evolve anyway. Keep perfecting it and get started.” Following this model has allowed Bridgeforth and his team to modify The Official Black App in ways that keep in on par with current trends. In addition to the business directory that has over 30 states, black owned businesses listed. The app provides Presidential polls, focuses on race relations, while attaining data that caters to the African American community through political outreach and information sharing. It even offers a break from handling business by including most African American’s favorite kickback game, spades! You can also access local delivery of your food purchases with Sto Run Delivery Services. Inspired by seeing the black entrepreneur getting younger it encourages him to do the work to bridge the gap between old and young technology developers and consumers. He and his team are currently working on a partnership with a t.v. streaming service that will provide black owned businesses advertising opportunities. Bridgeforths road to technology wasn’t an easy route, a lot of his coding skills came from teaching himself after realizing that most programs teach you enough to work for someone else. The current HBCU student at Paul Quinn College in Dallas, Texas wanted to learn and grow in the technology industry. His studies at Paul Quinn have allotted him the opportunity to compete this year at M.I.T after winning an HBCU competition (Battle of The Brains) in which he and his teammates built an app in 24 hours. As he prepares for this competition, he also faces new competition with his app. However, support from various people who have benefited from The Black App as well as those who know it’s history are encouraging the competition to back The Official Black App.
Patrick Crowe has been a Portrait Photographer since…forever. As early as high school, he began capturing images as a natural extension of artistic expression and stress relief. Patrick spent a large portion of his early life in Corporate America and recently made the transition to Professional Photography as a full-time entrepreneur. He creates compelling images, portraits and visual stories for a wide variety of clients while maintaining a focus on the entrepreneurial and entertainment industries.
Since the first issue of Geek Plus Magazine, Patrick has been an Art & Photography Director and Contributor. His work explores unique portraiture, fashion and architectural topics. He looks forward to sharing more of what he creates thru his lens with our Geek Plus Magazine audience and following.
Lisa Nixon is the embodiment of the brand Awriter Eleven. Which is a platform that provides solutions to diverse industries who are seeking to elevate their brand voice. We believe written expression is the cohesive solution to effectively conveying a meaningful message across diverse platforms. We create timeless copy and content, structured on the individual needs of our clients. In addition to creating for our clients, Lisa shares her creative mind through various written art forms, flexing her penmanship and uncanny ability to create art through written expression. Follow all of her success at https://www.facebook.com/awritereleven
Donecia is an entrepreneur and freelance writer who specializes in covering lifestyle and entertainment-related stories.
Her professional journalism career began in 2001 at The Shreveport Times where she spent more than a decade interviewing celebrities, including everyone from Bill Cosby, Joan Rivers and Smokie Robinson, to Steve Harvey, Monica and Kevin Hart.
She currently works as digital media manager at KTAL NBC 6, KMSS Fox 33 and KSHV 45, all owned by Nexstar Media Group, where she manages digital content and social media channels for arklatexhomepage.com.
In 2016, she made her entrepreneurial debut with the launch of her new blanket throw product, The Cocoon.
Prior to that, she served as digital managing editor for Townsquare Media where she managed digital content and social media for six radio stations and also served as a writing coach and editor for a team of 20 contributors. When she’s not writing, she also works as social media/PR consultant for various small businesses and organizations.
She’s also worked as a writer and communications coordinator at the Shreveport-Bossier Convention and Tourist Bureau where she regularly produced content for Red River Moms, City Life Magazine, Bossier Business Monthly and 20×49.
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