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Dissertation Watch: Dynastic and Generative Intent for First-Generation Black Wealth Creators

PhD in Leadership and Change alumna Dr. LaTanya White published her dissertation entitled “Dynastic and Generative Intent for First-Generation Black Wealth Creators in a Modern Racial Enclave Economy.” Her study explores the underlying causes of the racial wealth gap between Black and White Americans: the absence of intergenerational wealth transfers in Black business families. As American wealth becomes concentrated into fewer and fewer hands, the data reveal that one-third of the 400 wealthiest Americans inherited their wealth from the entrepreneurial endeavors of earlier generations in their family, some creating entrepreneurial dynasties.

An important aspect of succession planning is the construct of generativity. Generativity is practiced through leading, nurturing, promoting, and teaching the next generation to create things to “move down the generational chain and connect to a future” (Kotre, 1996, p. xv). There is little research that informs us about the generative intent of Black entrepreneurs. First-generation Black wealth creators operating in the beauty industry with dynastic and generative intent were the target population for this study. Interpretative phenomenological analysis of the data revealed that the paradigmatic ethos and frame of mind that developed from the lived experience of the study participants included the following themes: A Celebration of Blackness, Black Mothers: A Guiding Light, Destined for Purposeful Work, Our Health Our Wealth, and You Can’t Pay It Back. The themes imply that entrepreneurial education and training for first-generation Black entrepreneurs with dynastic intent must contextualize the Black lived experience. The study offers a model for Dynastic Wealth™, which includes extensive implications for entrepreneurial training and curriculum design changes for practitioners and policymakers. The model has been contextualized for the Black entrepreneurial experience and is designed through a lens of racial equity.

Dr. White is an inclusive scholar-practitioner working at the intersection of racial equity and entrepreneurship curriculum design. Over the course of her professional career, she has personally coached and consulted more than 600 Black urban entrepreneurs. A 2x author, TEDx Speaker, leader, and strategist, Dr. White is the founder and principal consultant for Concept Creative Group, a technical assistance firm focused on business development, capacity building, and Dynastic Wealth™ transfer for Black entrepreneurs. White was selected to participate in the inaugural cohorts for the Change Ventures Fellowship in Bali, Indonesia as well as the Center for Black Innovation’s EcoSystem Builders Fellowship. Dr. White previously spent 11 years serving as an entrepreneurship educator at a prominent Historically Black College/University, an experience that informed her advocacy for Black entrepreneurship as a pathway to wealth creation. She has designed an evidence-based entrepreneurship training model that specifically addresses the ancestral narrative and lived experience of Black entrepreneurs using a lens of racial equity.

Read more about Dr. White and her dissertation here.

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