Black Business Expo USA

September 26, 2020 - Durham, North Carolina


The History of the Black Business Expo

We have come so far from where our Founder Lovella Kelley started us from in 1990 at her home on 411 Walker Street.  On August 4, she sat down with her grandson Eric Kelly and gave him the vision that she saw.  It was a bold vision and the first show was only 94 booths in the then Omni Hotel downtown Durham.  The next year the Black Business Expo exploded into more than 300 booths, featuring keynote speakers such as Tony Brown of Tony Brown journal, George Fraser, Johnnie Corcoran, Chuck Davis, Donald Byrd and the Blackbirds, Willie Nash, Jonathan Butler, Regina Belle, Earl Graves of Black Enterprise Magazine, Bill Cherry of Black Expo USA, Robert Guilliame, Dr. Claude Anderson and Doug Williams just to name a few who have spoken over the years.   Each year the Expo was opened by Mayor Bill Bell and attended by many of Durham’s growing Corporations and Black business.  The Black Business was rated as the number one business show in the state by the Durham Chamber of Commerce for nine years in a row (1993 -2002).

Take a step back in history and remember some of the events you attended.  Our history is our strength and your business development are our focus.  We at Black Business Expo thank the Durham business community because you care and we look forward to more great years to come.

EXPO News and Awards

  • Med Week 1994 Minority Business of the Year Award 
  • Durham Business and Professional Chain Outstanding Business of the year.
  • Black Business Expo has been awarded Black Business Week in the city of Durham NC, A Proclamation by Durham City Council and the Key to the city.  
  • Back Business Expo has been featured on Business Worldwide TV show,  Time Warner Cable TV,  Business to Business radio show, the event has also appeared on the front covers of  Black Pages Magazine, Black Business North Carolina Magazine, The Carolina Times newspaper, The Hearld Sun newspaper and The Urban Journal.

A Glimpse of Black Business Expo’s History

A Picture is worth a thousand words. See for yourself why attending Black Business Expo was always about “being in the right place at the right time.”

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