Black Arts and Culture

Powerful community event to honor and celebrate community leaders and nonprofit organizations

On Black Friday, Nov. 24, Hampton Roads Regional Black Chamber of Commerce—Black BRAND—will host the Second Annual Black Diamond Affair at the Harrison Opera House in Norfolk at 6 p.m.

Last year, the organization began its inception with this event, which gathered more than 150 black business owners at the Wyndham Garden Norfolk Downtown to celebrate black excellence in Hampton Roads. Maggie Anderson, author of Our Black Year and the Empowerment Experiment, served as the keynote speaker. Dr. David M. Anderson Sr., Founder of Empowerment Inc., and Bruce Smith, NFL Hall of Famer also addressed the crowd.

This year, Black BRAND has established the event theme of It’s Our Time to continue to empower business owners and community leaders through its efforts to redirect the focus of Black Friday during the holiday season.

“As we embrace all that the holiday season embodies, it is important that we take time to reflect on the health and well-being of our communities,” said Blair Durham, president. “The Black Diamond Affair affords an opportunity to visualize our community from our own perspective by highlighting its strengths and positing progressive solutions for its challenges. In this way, we have everything we need to move our ideas forward and share in collective wealth. It’s Our Time.”

Community leaders such as Davy Smith III, Portsmouth Planning Commission Chairman; and Gaylene Kanoyton, executive director of the Virginia Legislative Black Caucus are among those to be honored in addition to nonprofit organizations such as the National Council of Negro Women, Inc. Norfolk and Newport News Alumnae Chapter of Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Inc.

Angela Reddix of ARDX, Dr. Geoffrey V. Guns of Second Calvary Baptist Church and Dr. McKinley Price, Mayor of Newport News are among those slated to speak at the event.

Tickets for the Second Annual Black Diamond Affair are now available along with sponsorship opportunities. For more information and to purchase tickets, visit

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