Spend a week in Durham, NC, a city capturing the country’s attention with its rich, diverse and geographically dense startup community and incredible ecosystem for Black founders. Durham has a rich history in Black entrepreneurship from its days as ‘Black Wall Street’ to the current flourishing of technology entrepreneurship. Yet, data shows that these founders do not have the same access to or success raising funding for their startups. The focus of this Exchange will be to:


  1. Prepare Black founders for an angel/seed stage round raise (less than $750k);

  2. Engage in conversation and provide useful tools around the unique challenges that face Black founders;

  3. Pair with an intern (undergraduate student) from the Thurgood Marshall College Fund who will be an extra set of hands to drive implementation during the program.

The American Underground will play host to this program and is considered North Carolina’s preeminent technology hub. It is one of the pioneers in inclusive innovation with nearly 30 percent of its startups led by women and 28 percent led by founders of color. The week will culminate with Durham’s annual celebration of Black Wall Street Homecoming which welcomes venture capitalists, entrepreneurs and others from around the United States to Durham.