Ed Colman speaks at SAAM summit

https://youtu.be/VAshI74wQxE

Marshawn Feltus speaks at SAAM summit

https://youtu.be/zKDZhFtFC58
Bethel New Life hosts panel discussion at 2017 SAAM Summit

Congressman Danny K. Davis, in collaboration with Sankofa Safe Child Initiative, recently hosted the 2017 State of the African American Male (SAAM) Summit held on Sept. 8-9 at the UIC Forum.

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by Latin – WMP
Bethel New Life hosts panel discussion at 2017 SAAM Summit

By Latin – WMP

Congressman Danny K. Davis, in collaboration with Sankofa Safe Child Initiative, recently hosted the 2017 State of the African American Male (SAAM) Summit held on Sept. 8-9 at the UIC Forum.

Bethel New Life Exec. Director Ed Coleman hosted a panel discussion at the event on Economic Development, Jobs and Entrepreneurship. Panel members included Angela Hamilton of the Chicago Urban League, Roman Morrow, Emmanuel Jackson founder and Exec. Director of Evanston Technologies, Will Edwards from the City of Chicago Dept. of Planning.

The event attracted elected officials, area residents, youth community and business leaders to hear from speakers discussing issues impacting African American males in the 7th Congressional District of Illinois.

The discussion began with Coleman asking the close to 40 people in attendance “What is your definition of economic development?” After hearing from a few people in the room, Coleman gave a very practical definition that included both job and business development highlighting the need for both skill and entrepreneurship training.

There was a healthy mix of youth and younger adults in the room and Marshawn Feltus, an alum of Bethel’s Entrepreneurship program, took the opportunity to direct his remarks toward them. He spoke about his background and how after being released from prison and unsuccessfully seeking employment, it was Bethel New Life and its programs that gave him the chance he needed to prove himself.

He spoke directly to younger African-American men wearing name brand clothing. “I see you with the True Religion and the Jordan’s, now imagine if you had your own brand.

In the six years since his release, Feltus has become a business owner (ACT Yoga), he also sits on the board of a couple community organizations. He serves as a role model for younger men being released from the prison system showing them that if you’re willing to invest in training and hard work it is possible to become successfully re acclimated to society after incarceration.