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Harry C. Alford

Stories by Harry C.

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The Promise of Colombia

Beyond the Rhetoric

Where do I begin to tell the story of our trade mission to the beautiful nation of Colombia? It had been in the planning stage for more than 14 years. It began when Oscar Gamboa, who works for the government, came to our office in Washington, D.C., and met with Charles DeBow. There would be numerous communications with Oscar and others but we never solidified anything because we were preoccupied with African nations.

Beyond the Rhetoric

‘Gainful Employment’ rule throws Black students for a loss

Last week, the Obama Administration declared war on one million underserved students pursuing higher education throughout the United States. While the president and first lady launched their campaign to make it easier for low-income minority students to access college, the Department of Education has launched an unprecedented assault on this same community through a new proposal that will cut thousands of college programs that disproportionately serve poor communities, single working mothers, veterans and other at-risk populations. At a time when American employers desperately need an educated, skilled workforce to sustain economic recovery, a confused and conflicted White House is hurting the underserved communities it claims to support.

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Shaking up Denver

There have been times in the 20-year history of the National Black Chamber of Commerce that we had to put on our agenda a major lawsuit.

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Hurting our students for economic gain

There are very few things that are as vile and predatory than cheating young Black students out of a decent education.

A valiant fight for right in St. Paul

In my travels I have met many outstanding warriors. The late Arthur A. Fletcher and Parren J. Mitchell have cultivated the nation’s landscape in terms of economic empowerment.

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Betrayal in Chicago

Like a typical American city, Indianapolis was a venue of mass discrimination against Black-owned construction business. I had been working since 1989 to change that.

Detroit: nowhere to go but up

Beyond the Rhetoric

It has been a long and rocky ride down the economic slope for the Motor City. The first time I moved to Detroit was 1974.

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Slaves without socioeconomic change

In the past there were so many hangings, beatings, shootings and bombings. They went without justice being applied. During the past few decades we have shown national outrage from Emmett Till, Mississippi civil rights workers shootings, Rodney King, etc. and now we have the heartbreaking death of little Trayvon Martin.

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How China runs circles around us in Africa

You can also call this piece “The Tale of Two Presidents.” The contrast between the attitudes of China’s President Xi Jinping and our President Barack Obama is absolutely shocking. President Xi is straight up about business.

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A real way to save our mortgages

It is now five years since the great financial crisis of 2008, which saw housing markets plummet, the stock market swoon, and millions of Americans lose their jobs in the wake of the recession that ensued.

Good week at the United States Supreme Court

The latest session of the U.S. Supreme Court (SCOTUS) had the interest of Black Americans like never before. On the line were two key components that brought African Americans into full citizenship, affirmative action and voting rights.

Beyond the Rhetoric

We are very disturbed that elected officials as well as civil rights organizations have this cordial relationship with construction unions. Construction unions have consistently discriminated against Black workers and contractors.

The loneliest person in the building

For the most part, corporate America employees are satisfied with their careers. There is usually a chart to review in terms of responsibility. Is the employee moving up the “ladder” and heading towards more executive responsibility?

How governments avoid working with Black business

Last week, I wrote about why we have Black business programs. Their evolution of from the Civil Rights Movement and the Civil Rights Act of 1964 is the cause for their existence. Title VI of the act, along with the U.S. Supreme Court decisions justifies their existence. The most frustrating thing about it is the fact that most of them don’t work too well. Our collective gains in the public and corporate marketplace have been little and slow in coming. If we had genuine efforts and very positive results after 49 years of law there would be no need for affirmative action and participation programs.

How Black business development programs came to be

We have these programs from the blood, sweat and tears of Dr. Martin Luther King and the other giants of the Civil Rights Movement. They saw the vision of having a new and improved Civil Rights Act.

How Black business development programs came to be

We have these programs from the blood, sweat and tears of Dr. Martin Luther King...

The EPA adds to the list of Washington scandals

These are very wild times here in Washington, D.C. We have four big scandals going on that could threaten the entire Obama Administration. The biggest appears to be the IRS scandal. Next, is the Benghazi cover-up. The spying on the Associated Press and Fox News by the Department of Justice is a direct attack on the 1st Amendment.

The EPA adds to the list of Washington scandals

These are very wild times here in Washington, D.C. We have four big scandals going...

Lets embrace an energy future that boosts the economy

Over the past few weeks, President Obama has made comments that seemed to signal his...

Benghazianother Clinton scandal?

The congressional hearings on May 8 may become the beginning of the end for Hillary...

Obamacare: ushering in an age of socialized medicine

"Oh what a tangled web we weave ...." The Affordable Care Act, aka Obamacare,...

A true holocaust: 15 million Black babies dead

Let me first say that I believe a woman should have the right to an...

Street gangsL.A. style

All cities have street gangs. Some can be violent and others can be criminal organizations....

Street gangsDetroit style

This is the beginning of a series of articles about street gangs in our nation....

Getting a legal team on your side

Legal Shield was first known as PrePaid Legal and that is where this story begins....

Detroits problems became too much to surmount

I visited Cleveland a few years ago. As I was heading towards downtown I noticed...

Kenya at a crossroads

It is quite easy for one to fall in love with the East African nation...

Jobs versus entitlements

"That's what the world is today," so says the Motown hit, which was sung by...

Food stamps instead of jobs

The Poverty Industrial Complex is well established since its early years in the 1960s. Lately,...

Tools for business success

No business can guarantee success. In fact, the vast majority of business ventures fail by...

Getting in your wallet by way of cell phone

Governments--federal through local--are run by revenue. The source for their revenue is taxation. Their management...

ZIP!: Black neighborhoods are changing fast

Gentrification: The process of renewal and rebuilding accompanying the influx of middle-class or affluent people...

Crack cocaine: Brazils response to its Black majority

It started in the jungles of the Amazon and is now infesting the streets of...

Lincoln: emancipating the proclamation

My family went to the movies to see "Lincoln," the much advertised and critically acclaimed...

Trouble on the mighty Mississippi

The Mississippi River is a great blessing from God. Beside being the largest river in...

The story of cable64 years of success

It seems so natural today. Having cable television in our homes, giving us a vast...

The Environmental Protection Agencyunchained?

The votes have been cast. The ballots have been counted. And for most Americans, the...

Cuba: an island of promise

The National Black Chamber of Commerce® has been studying the evolution of Cuba for 14...

Completing the history of the African Diaspora

All research, educated conclusions, anthropological findings and biblical writings cite the continent of Africa as...

U.S.-style diversity has gone global

We have come a long way in diversity management. This is really a fancy name...

Falling off the fiscal cliff will hurt everyone

Ignorance is not bliss. However, there are too many of us who are ignoring the...

Joint-venture shams, D.C.-style

Sometimes the best intentions can be shattered by unforeseen consequences. Such is the case with...

Notes from Equatorial Guinea

I have been hearing so much negative news and gossip about this small nation located...

The president has him singing the blues

"Something happened along the way and what use to be happy is sad. Something happened...

Notes from Trinidad and Tobago

I was very curious when the speaking invitation arrived from the Emancipation Support Committee based...

After the elections, a tidal wave of regulations on businesses

We, as African Americans, must get more involved in making policy. If you are not...

Obama fiddles while the nation burns

The American Dream is starting to fade away, and that is very scary....

Diasporans doing business with Africa

For the love of Africa, we must commit to becoming a unified Diaspora. That unity...

Front Busting and fraud detection cont.

So here we were at a crossroads in the state of Indiana. I had just...

Front-busting in Indiana

The times were tense at my office of Minority Business Development, for the state of...

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