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Legacy of Excellence Event to Highlight History of African-American Businesses in Iowa

For more information contact:

For more information contact:



Kay Snyder, 515.725.3150




“Legacy of Excellence” event to highlight history of African-American businesses in Iowa


February 10, 2011 (DES MOINES) In celebration of more than 150 years of black-owned and operated business in Iowa, the Iowa Department of Economic Development is sponsoring “A Legacy of Excellence: The History of Black Business in Iowa.”


This program will celebrate the history and contributions African-Americans’ business ownership have made to Iowa and the state’s economy.  


What: “A Legacy of Excellence: The History of Black Business in Iowa


When: Saturday, Feb. 19, 10:30 a.m.-1:15 p.m.


Where: Corinthian Baptist Church Fellowship Hall, 814 School St., Des Moines


Who: The event features Dr. Hal Chase, Emeritus Instructor of History at Des Moines Area Community College-Urban Campus. Chase coordinated the publication of the collaborative, multi-author book “Outside In: African-American History in Iowa 1838-2000,” which is being updated.


Lu Spaine, owner of Zumi’s, which sells clothing, accessories, home decor and gifts from developing countries as well as fair trade and environmentally safe products, will speak.


Marvin DeJear, owner of general contractor DeJear Enterprises, is also scheduled to speak.


State Reps. Ako Abdul-Samad and Ruth Ann Gaines will provide commentary as part of the program.


How: Attendance is free and includes lunch, but those attending must pre-register by February 15.  Register by calling 515.725.3125 or online at


Other Highlights:


Those who attend can also learn how the Targeted Small Business Program of Iowa helps minorities, women, and people with disabilities start or expand a small business. In addition, the Small Business Administration will outline the programs and assistance it provides.


The Targeted Small Business Program of the Iowa Department of Economic Development is sponsoring the event in partnership with the Small Business Administration.




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Iowa Economic Development Authority
200 East Grand Avenue
Des Moines, Iowa 50309
Phone: 1.515.348.6200
email: Email Us

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