AT&T Dream in Black Announces 2023 Black Future Makers

Company celebrates five years of collaborating with influencers, entrepreneurs and activists who are transforming the culture

What’s the news?

AT&T* Dream in Black’s signature program, Black Future Makers, is marking a 5-year milestone of highlighting influential leaders impacting the culture as well as amplifying the contributions of consumers making a difference in their communities.

More than 80 celebrity influencers have been recognized through the program which first launched in 2018 and more than $200,000 has been given to everyday leaders who are on pace to make significant impacts in their areas of interest.

Throughout this year’s Black Future Maker program, a total of 15 extraordinary culture shapers – artists, activists, entrepreneurs, and dreamers will be highlighted and featured at events and activations across the U.S. During Black History Month, AT&T will use the campaign to invite consumers to share their own Dream in Black declaration, for a chance to win $25,000. Submissions are open starting today through the month of February. Including the cash prize, winners will also receive a new Samsung S23 and the opportunity to create social media content with one of this year’s celebrity Black Future Makers.

In its fifth iteration, this year’s theme, “New Black Renaissance,” celebrates Black dreamers who are authentically contributing to the culture during this era of greater possibility. Black Future Makers are selected based on their exemplification of AT&T’s Dream in Black mission to advance Black culture. This year’s class includes media powerhouses like model and entrepreneur Lori Harvey, artist Big Sean and actors J. Alphonse Nicholson and Shangela, who demonstrate authenticity and embody diverse viewpoints and talents and use their platforms to inspire and impact their communities.

Why is this important?

The Black Future Makers program speaks to our continued commitment to building and supporting societies and businesses in which everyone thrives by providing equitable access to economic opportunities. The program gives us another opportunity to give back to the Black community, spotlight extraordinary Black talent and inspire others to reach for greater possibility. The 2023 Black Future Makers will also provide mentorship and guidance to the 2022 Rising Future Makers class, as part of our efforts to provide educational resources, opportunity and access to the next generation of leaders coming out of HBCUs.

How to enter the Black Future Makers Contest

Beginning today, consumers can share how they are a Black Future Maker via the Black Future Makers Contest page. AT&T Dream in Black appointed judges will select four winners who exemplify the values of the Dream in Black program—pushing the culture forward and uplifting their communities. Winners will be announced in March on AT&T’s Instagram and Tik Tok page.

How is AT&T amplifying these Black Future Makers?

AT&T Dream in Black will celebrate the new Black Future Makers class with a string of activations kicking off in Chicago. On February 10, invited consumers can visit AT&T’s Chicago flagship store (600 Michigan Ave, Chicago, IL 60611) for an exclusive special performance by award-winning artist and inductee Big Sean. Big Sean’s performance will later be streamed for the public on February 24. Additionally, AT&T will support 2023 Black Future Maker inductee, Shangela, by sponsoring her Fully Lit tour stop at the AT&T Chicago flagship store.

This year, AT&T Dream in Black has chosen to collaborate with multidisciplinary artist and animator Handel Eugene as the 2023 Black Future Maker Artist in Residence. Handel pushes the boundaries of his work by utilizing new platforms such as VR, AR & interactive technology, which will be featured through this year’s Black Future Makers portraits and imagery which will be on display in select retail stores.

AT&T is also launching a collaboration with Smartify, a platform that combines audio-visual storytelling, to demonstrate how 5G and augmented reality can enhance people’s understanding of the arts, from anywhere. Through this collaboration, Handel’s work will be featured in an exclusive short video series and will extend this year’s immersive Black Future Makers experiences at AT&T Flagship locations in Chicago, Dallas and San Francisco. And in celebration of Black History Month, some of the nation’s most prominent collections – including Getty, the Smithsonian Institution, the Philadelphia Museum of Art, the Saint Louis Art Museum and the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art – will showcase work by Black artists and makers on Smartify.

What are people saying?

“When people have access to the resources needed to unlock their full potential, the door to opportunity widens,” said Michelle Jordan, chief diversity officer, AT&T. “I’m proud of how our Dream in Black platform and the Black Future Makers serve not only as inspiration for others in the community to achieve greater possibility, but also lives up to our commitment to empower Black talent through economic opportunity.”

“The success of the Black Future Makers initiative is a testament to the great possibilities we can uncover through access and the opportunity to pursue our dreams,” said Sabina Ahmed, assistant vice president, Media and Sponsorship, AT&T. “As we celebrate the culture and the creators who shape it, the Black Future Makers are not only making a difference within their respective fields but also laying the blueprint for the next generation to breakdown even more doors. We’ve seen this come to life through the mentorship with the students of our Rising Future Makers program and we look forward to reaching even more communities through authentic connections.”

To learn more, visit AT&T Dream in Black.

 

Read more Diversity news