Pharrell Williams calls for economic fairness at MLK event

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Singer and music producer Pharrell Williams challenges corporate America to ‘do more’ by supporting entrepreneurs of color and adopting economic equity measures

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. – Singer and music producer Pharrell Williams challenges corporate America to “do more” by supporting entrepreneurs of color and embracing economic equity measures.

The Virginian-Pilot reports that in remarks Monday at the Urban League of Hampton Roads’ annual Martin Luther King Jr. Awards program, Williams said big business needs to invest in people of color and noted that some of between them already did.

“Not all companies,” added Williams. “The smart ones – the ones who will be here in 50 years.”

Williams singled out Japanese finance and venture capital group SoftBank. He said the group invests in founders of color, who can then create generational wealth and change their cities for the better.

Williams, who was born in Virginia Beach, also urged businesses and philanthropists to support the Urban League and thanked the local chapter for its work in the areas of financial well-being, health care and housing.

The event, which could not take place in person due to COVID-19, was streamed live on Facebook and YouTube. Several local leaders were honored for representing King’s social justice legacy.

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