Dear Walker’s Legacy Community:
It is with great emotion that I announce my departure from Walker’s Legacy and the Walker’s Legacy Foundation.
Nearly eleven years ago, I found myself yearning for a much-needed mentor-mentee relationship with an executive and enterprising woman who looked like me. I knew that women of color were making great strides in the business world but were noticeably void from mainstream media coverage. After many failed attempts of emailing notable women trying to solicit mentorship, I was at an impasse. I then decided to establish an organization dedicated to supporting minority businesswomen, and to name it in honor of continuing the legacy of a woman whose entrepreneurial achievements inspired and uplifted me: Madam C. J. Walker.
Our first event was held at the Charles Sumner Museum in Washington, DC, and included nearly 30 women. More than a decade later, I am proud to say that the work of Walker’s Legacy and the Walker’s Legacy Foundation has touched tens of thousands of women across our nation and counting.
Since our founding, WL programming has provided educational training to thousands of women resulting in more than $40 million in investments and loans and more than $150 million in successfully awarded corporate, state, local, government, and nonprofit grants and contracts.
Over the last decade we’ve also:
- Grown to a network of more than 60,000 enterprising multicultural women and counting
- Supported the awarding of $2.5 Million in COVID relief funds to Black businesses
- Trained nearly 2,000 women through our three-month accelerator program, PROSPECTUS
- Conducted ongoing educational programming in more than 20 cities across the country
- Aided more than 200 women in identifying mentorship opportunities
- Honored nearly 600 multicultural women through our various awards programming
- Provided intensive three-month financial literacy and entrepreneurship training to more than 150 single mothers and nearly 50 middle-to-high school-age students
- Hosted nearly 5,000 women annually through online and in-person programming across the nation
- Provided nearly 70 college students with critical relief funding to support COVID-19 emergency relocation
- Provided training to hundreds of university-age women across the nation
- Established the Walker’s Legacy Scholarship for Enterprising Women at Howard University
- Produced first-of-its-kind research on Black women entrepreneurs for the National Women’s Business Council
- Launched Men Who Enterprise supporting more than 500 enterprising men of color
- And of course, built lasting relationships amongst thousands of women across the nation
In my departure, I am proud to share that we have identified an amazing leader with more than 20 years of experience with women’s empowerment to usher our organization into the next era. We will be making the formal announcement of our new leadership next week so please stay tuned.
On March 1, 2021, I will embark on my new journey as a presidential appointee within the Biden-Harris Administration and look forward to sharing more information with you in the coming days on the specifics of my appointment.
Please know that these are inspiring times and that so much more is on the horizon. We look forward to your continued support of the critical and much-needed work of Walker’s Legacy and the Walker’s Legacy Foundation as it continues to champion the nation’s fastest-growing entrepreneurial segment, women of color.
Cheers to the next chapter.
Natalie Madeira Cofield
Founder & CEO
Walker’s Legacy and Walker’s Legacy Foundation