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35 Black Enterprise: celebrating 35 years as your ultimate guide to financial empowerment.

Dear Friends,

Thirty-five years ago, as I launched this publication, I realized that the value of BLACK ENTERPRISE magazine needed to be proven, in its relevance both to our times and to the black community. A true testament to our value is the tact that we now enjoy the pleasure of delivering a publication to more than 4 million readers each month. These readers have come to rely on the tools, useful information, and inspiration found within the pages of BLACK ENTERPRISE--a magazine whose mission has always centered on closing the black wealth gap and financially empowering African Americans.

In 1970, there existed no other publication addressing the financial and business concerns of a growing African American community--one comprised of success-driven business leaders, upwardly mobile entrepreneurs, and an emerging class of corporate executives. Since then, Earl G. Graves Ltd. has grown considerably, evolving from a single title publisher into a multimedia company featuring syndicated television and radio shows, annual business conferences, popular sports/lifestyle/financial empowerment events, a Website, and a private equity fund.

Being able to serve such an important market for 35 years in the multifaceted ways we do is both a privilege and a duty--one that would not be possible without the continued investment of our partners. In this commemorative insert, we are proud to feature a number of corporations that have recognized the value of the BE audience since our launch in August 1970. Out of 49 original advertisers, the nine companies you will see on the following pages are the Trailblazers that have demonstrated an unwavering belief in the value of the African American market and done so without fail for 35 years. They are the pioneers that recognize the significant buying power of the African American community and that maintain their commitment to African American empowerment--entrepreneurially, professionally, and personally. These companies continue to illuminate the path for their peers to follow.

My sincere thanks to our subscribers, readers, and advertisers for 35 years of steadfast loyalty. The 35th Anniversary of BLACK ENTERPRISE magazine is not just our celebration, but one that we share with each of you.

Sincerely, Earl G. Graves Sr. Publisher & CEO BLACK ENTERPRISE

Dear Friends,

When my father, Earl G. Graves Sr., launched BLACK ENTERPRISE magazine 35 years ago, corporate America wasn't sure there was an audience for a publication targeted to African American entrepreneurs, professionals and those entering the corporate workforce. Ten issues later, the magazine became profitable, and corporate America began to realize that such an audience did indeed exist

A large measure of our Success in the early years can be attributed to our flagship marketing partners, those companies that were trailblazers in helping us to bring BLACK ENTERPRISE to the public. Their initial investment paid off, and many of those same clients continue to support the magazine today. It is those visionary companies that we salute in this special advertising insert to commemorate 35 years of BLACK ENTERPRISE.

While we have grown and evolved during our three-plus decades of serving the African American business community, we have not strayed from our original purpose: to serve as a business resource to African Americans in their entrepreneurial and wealth building pursuits. With each new business venture we explore and develop, we will continue to deliver on our promise to empower the African American community--at home, work, and leisure.

Earlier this year, we recognized the 75 Host Powerful African Americans in Corporate America, the 50 Most Powerful Blacks in Sports, and the 30 Best Companies for Diversity--keeping BLACK ENTERPRISE on the cutting edge of business trends that affect African Americans in the workplace. This was also the year that we extended the reach of our syndicated radio report by partnering with industry leader Clear Channel to broaden the show's audience.

This year, we made homeownership the No. 1 priority for our readers because it is the single most effective way for individuals and families to position themselves to accumulate wealth. We are excited about working with all of our clients to expand our relationships by leveraging our expertise, intellectual capital, and media products to grow our clients' business.

Thank you for 35 years of loyalty to the BLACK ENTERPRISE brand. As we look toward the next 35 years, we will build upon the solid foundation we established years ago in order to continue to move our business forward.

Warm Regards, Earl G. Graves Jr. President BLACK ENTERPRISE

Prudential Financial

Dear Earl:

On behalf of the employees of Prudential Financial, let me congratulate Black Enterprise magazine on 35 years of distinguished service to the African American business community. A proud legacy, indeed.

At Prudential Financial, we're proud of our heritage, too. We started a bit earlier--in 1875, to be exact--with a mission to help people grow and protect their wealth and achieve financial success. That's a goal we share with Black Enterprise. Much has changed since we started our journeys. We have each diversified into new markets and constantly adapted to a rapidly changing business and financial marketplace. But neither of our organizations has strayed from our original mission, as we truly believe it is the right one to follow.

At Prudential Financial, we're also proud of the path we've long followed as a strong supporter of diversity. For us, diversity has always been about more than race or gender. It's about diversity of thought, background, age, religion and much more. It's about all the ways we're different, all the ways we're similar and how that helps us build a productive workplace and succeed better in the marketplace.

Today, Black Enterprise stands as the premier financial publication serving the African American community. And I think Prudential Financial stands as the premier company to help your readers grow and protect their wealth. It's only natural that our two institutions have been closely aligned for more than three decades. And we look forward to continuing our partnership for decades to come.

Best wishes for the next 35 years--and beyond.

Sincerely, Art Ryan Chairman and CEO Prudential Financial

IBM

THE GREATEST HIRE WE NEVER GOT TO MAKE

In 1968, Earl G. Graves turned down a job offer at BM. Disappointing, but we understood.

Instead, he began one of the most successful business magazines in the country. IBM was there, in the very first issue, with one of the magazine's very first ads. From then until now, our commitment has never wavered.

Today Black Enterprise is the premier business publication for the African American community. Over the years, Mr. Graves also found success in business consulting, print publishing and wealth management.

IBM congratulates Earl G. Graves and Black Enterprise on their extraordinary accomplishments. And even though we're still disappointed Mr. Graves didn't take the job with us, we understand.

No hard feelings, Earl. And congratulations.

IBM and the IBM logo are registered trademarks of International Business Machines Corporation in the United States and/or other countries. Other company, product and service names may be trademarks or service marks of others. @2005 IBM Corp. All rights reserved.

Ford

Ford Motor Company salutes Earl G. Graves and Black Enterprise Magazine on 35 years of distinguished service and achievement.

For three and a half decades, Black Enterprise has championed and chronicled the growth of African American business in this country, and served as a premier source of business news, financial information and career advice for the African American community and others. Ford is proud to have partnered with Black Enterprise throughout the years as we continue to encourage entrepreneurial empowerment for African Americans. When we create opportunities for entrepreneurs, we not only help them achieve personal financial success, we help build communities through economic development--one of the core goals of Ford Motor Company since its inception.

Congratulations on your 35th anniversary. We wish you continued success in future endeavors.

Sincerely, Steve Lyons Group Vice President, North America Marketing, Sales and Service Ford Motor Company

Dear Earl Graves, Sr.:

At ExxonMobil, our commitment to excellence requires that we operate ethically and safely, treat employees and customers fairly and be a positive contributor to the nations and communities where we operate.

Every day, from all over the world, we see the immense value of varied cultures, experiences and perspectives. And as our industry faces the formidable challenge of meeting the world's energy needs, we know that it will be met by the shared intellect, skill, and dedication of all of us.

Thirty-five years ago you envisioned a publication that would both educate and motivate African Americans in business. Your one mission was to "ensure that all African Americans gain opportunity to participate in the free enterprise system and gain a considerable measure of the American dream." Now after 35 years, Black Enterprise has evolved into a multi-faceted media and finance company that touches millions through its expansive network.

In recognition of the 35th anniversary, we have included the vintage ad that ran in the first issue of Black Enterprise magazine. Even then Mobil recognized that excellence came in all colors and genders. Now as ExxonMobil, we continue to embrace diversity, understanding fully the power of varying perspectives, experiences and backgrounds.

We commend you and the Black Enterprise team for staying true to your mission and making such a meaningful difference in the lives of many who share the dream of becoming economically empowered and who through your guidance have achieved self sufficiency and are embarking on generational wealth.

We are proud that Mobil was among your first advertisers in that inaugural issue and we as ExxonMobil are pleased to be among your supporters today.

Happy 35th Anniversary! Mark Shores U.S. Retail Sales Director ExxonMobil Fuels Marketing Company

Dear Reader:

As a global company with operations in more than 100 countries, diversity isn't merely a noble idea--it's who we are. Every day, GE works to ensure that all employees, no matter where they are located in the world and no matter where they come from, have on opportunity to contribute and succeed. Encompassed in that goal are promoting traditional ideas of diversity, including ethnicity, race and gender, while also exploring more contemporary concepts like inclusiveness.

Every day, I strive to make GE a place where integrity is our backbone and people feel like they can live their dreams. We must recruit the best, constantly working on leading-edge ideas and developing people. I wont to create o place where everybody that comes through the door feels like they can get any job that's out there--and where we con continue to make u vibrant culture where people learn from each other every day.

At GE, our African American Forum (AAF), now in its fourteenth year, further fuels diversity. AAF engages the leadership of our company to help us bring diverse talent through the pipeline. They help us coach and mentor young talent and offer informal advice as people are building their careers. Our African American leaders take enormous pride in being part of a network of the most talented people in the world.

We've seen good results. The number of diverse GE officers has risen 29% since 2001 and the number of diverse senior Executives has risen 27%. U.S. minorities run GE businesses totaling $40 billion in revenues--one-quarter of the company revenues. Of that, African Americans run businesses with $28 billion in revenues. I'm proud that GE's Board of Directors has two African American directors.

GE has received great recognition for our diversity efforts from the Executive Leadership Council and the Lawyers' Committee for Civil Rights Under Law. In fact, Black Enterprise recognized four of our top leaders on their recent list of the "Top 75 Executives in Corporate America." We're proud of these honors. We are convinced that developing a diverse employee population is absolutely critical to our long-term success in a diverse world. This is one reason why GE is annually recognized as one of the world's most respected companies. Going forward, we are committed to building upon our diversity success.

On behalf of our 300,000 employees, I'd like to extend our warmest congratulations to Earl Graves, Sr. and the entire team at Block Enterprise on their 35th anniversary.

Jeff Immelt Chairman and CEO GE

NEW YORK LIFE

To the Publisher, Editors and Staff of Black Enterprise magazine:

All of us at New York Life congratulate Black Enterprise magazine on your 35th year of publication.

You have helped thousands of Americans grow their businesses, manage their investments and build and protect their wealth. The significance of these contributions cannot be overstated. Economic empowerment has a ripple effect, beginning with individuals and, in time, strengthening families, communities and all of society.

Black Enterprise magazine has also performed another valuable service: offering New York Life and other companies a platform for reaching African-American business owners and executives. By becoming one of the first advertisers to demonstrate our belief in Black Enterprise, New York Life signaled its commitment to understanding and serving the needs of African-American businesspeople. Community service is another part of that ongoing commitment: New York Life's recent initiatives include scholarship programs for promising African-American business students, and nationwide economic education efforts in partnership with the Rainbow/PUSH Coalition.

We salute Earl G. Graves and everyone associated with Black Enterprise for authoring one of the most inspiring success stories of our times--the success of a unique publication and the success, many times over, of those who have learned and prospered from it.

Sincerely, Sy Sternberg Chairman and Chief Executive Officer New York Life Insurance Company

American Airlines

Gerard J. Arpey Chairman and Chief Executive Officer

Dear Readers:

We salute and congratulate Black Enterprise on its 35th anniversary!

American Airlines has supported Black Enterprise with advertising and sponsorships since its very beginning 35 years ago. We have been steadfast in our support because we have long believed it is important for us to reach African-American entrepreneurs and businesspeople, and more broadly the growing African-American market.

Editorially, Black Enterprise has been an effective vehicle for encouraging business development and advancement among African-Americans, and we embrace that important mission as well.

Our new slogan, "We know why you fly," reflects our insight and our experience. We fly more people more miles than any airline on earth, but we understand that what really matters is treating every customer with respect.

We look forward to welcoming you on board an American Airlines flight soon, and often. The first step is to visit us at AA.com, where you'll find it easy and fast to do business with us.

Again, our best wishes to Black Enterprise on its 35th anniversary. We look forward to many more years of successful partnership.

Sincerely yours,

Celebrating 35 Years of Supporting BLACK ENTERPRISE

Ingrid Saunders Jones Senior Vice President Corporate External Affairs The Coca-Cola Company

Since Black Enterprise magazine first hit newsstands in 1970. it has proven to be an essential business tool. Today, the magazine serves as a solid foundation and inspiration for more than four million readers worldwide.

The Coca-Cola Company is proud to have been an inaugural advertiser in Black Enterprise. And we are proud to continue our support of the magazine's commitment to chronicle a wide range of business ideas, ambitions, and successes.

We congratulate Black Enterprise on its 35th anniversary and look forward to many more years to come.

Join The Celebration!

The 12th Annual BLACK ENTERPRISE/PEPSI GOLF & TENNIS CHALLENGE

Labor Day Weekend September 1-5, 2005 Doral Resort a spa Miami, Florida

Just Confirmed! Kem & Stephanie Mills.

The Means

An occasions to experience the best in power networking while enjoying the finest in leisure pursuits.

The Ends

The 12th Annual Black Enterprise/ Pepsi Golf & Tennis Challenge, To be held at the Doral Golf Resort & Spa, a Marriott resort in Miami, Florida, will again host over 1,200 guest.

This year's tournament will provide more opportunities for professionals interested in expanding their business and networking options.

Package Choices

1] Golf 2] Golf School 3] Tennis 4] Spa 5] Guest *

* Only open to guest accompanied by an individual with the golf, golf school, tennis, or spa package.
COPYRIGHT 2005 Earl G. Graves Publishing Co., Inc.
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 2005, Gale Group. All rights reserved. Gale Group is a Thomson Corporation Company.

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Publication:Black Enterprise
Article Type:Advertisement
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Aug 1, 2005
Words:2672
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