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Business for Good, the new owner of the University Club at 141 Washington Ave., has a new partner and tenant: the newly-formed Albany Black Chamber.

PRESS RELEASE – It’s a partnership founded on a strong, mutual mission: build, sustain, and promote Black and Latino-owned businesses in Albany and beyond. The new organization unites the UpState New York Black Chamber of Commerce, founded by Anthony Gaddy, and the Capital District Black Chamber of Commerce, founded by Corey Ellis – a 501c3 public charity that will become the charitable arm of the new chamber. A $350,000 donation from Business for Good will help the Albany Black Chamber expand its reach and hire staff.

“We purchased the University Club to help elevate Black and Minority-Owned businesses in Downtown Albany,” said Ed Mitzen, co-founder of Business for Good. “The Albany Black Chamber will move in first and have a permanent home there.”

“A chamber of commerce is an integral part of the economic development of a community,” said Jahkeen Hoke, CEO of Business for Good. “Albany needs an institution that caters to its Black, Latino and other underserved entrepreneurs and the business community. The Albany Black Chamber, affiliated with U.S. Black Chambers, Inc., will be a resource for local individuals and companies, as well as firms considering Albany as a place to do business.”

“The city I was born and raised in lacks real economic opportunities for people of color,” added Corey Ellis. “The Albany Black Chamber will connect individuals with the resources they need for their businesses to grow.”

“Black and Latino entrepreneurship has been overlooked in Albany and beyond for too long, imperiling the overall success of our region,” said Anthony Gaddy. “We can change that. The Chamber brings to its members:  advocacy; access to capital; assistance with contracts that will help grow their businesses; training; and leverage, due to our affiliation with the U.S. Black Chambers. There’s a lot of talk about community development in our region, but it is economic development that turns neighborhoods around. I am optimistic and I am passionate because I believe it can happen here.”

About the University Club

Founded in 1901 to promote social intercourse among its members by providing reading and assembly rooms, the purpose of the club was to cultivate and maintain university spirit in the city of Albany. Club leadership commissioned the construction of the building at 141 Washington Ave. in 1924 following a fire at the club’s previous location. It opened in May 1925.

About The Business for Good Foundation™

With values rooted in equity, access, opportunity, and prosperity, BFG has advanced the model of traditional venture philanthropy to Do Good and Give Back to communities in the Greater Capital Region of Albany. The foundation, formed in 2020, seeks to give back to move forward and is rooted in the core principle of “for good, not gain.” Comprised of a mission-focused team, The Business for Good Foundation™ believes no challenge is insurmountable through hard and thoughtful work. With a goal to provide businesses and organizations with sustained support, BFG invests in people for the long term and in every way. Business for Good: building better businesses, stronger communities, and a more equitable world.
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