Melvin M. Coleman: Black Economic Empowerment through Ownership and Control

Since the development of the Transatlantic Slave Trade, African Americans have primarily served as a source of labor in the American and global economy. This has limited the ability of African Americans to build wealth, which leads to power and influence. Listen to the conversation as Ramona talks to Melvin Coleman about the need for African Americans to move beyond being employees and consumers to being owners of businesses and industries. Melvin M. Colman is President of the Atlanta Black Chambers and the founder and chief portfolio strategist of Essential Wealth Management, a registered investment advisory firm based in the Atlanta area. A US Navy veteran, Melvin is originally from Savannah, Georgia, and now makes Atlanta his home.



  • Melvin’s professional trajectory into becoming an expert in economic empowerment
  • “DSGB”
  • Savannah, Georgia
  • Atlanta Black Chambers
  • Economic history of slavery
  • Labor history and the role of African Americans as a source of labor
  • Importance of ownership in building wealth
  • Strategies for the economic empowerment of the African American community
  • Strategies for college success

Melvin M. Coleman

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