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About Us


Our Founder witnessed entrepreneurship and innovation firsthand as her parents worked hard to build businesses and generate wealth, but because of gaps in access and support, entrepreneurship looked more like a pathway to struggle, not success. She further understood the mechanisms of this gap while working at venture capital firms and nonprofits in Chicago. The cornerstones of what it means to be authentically Black — like creativity, innovation, and culture — were crucial drivers within business, yet in spaces designed for entrepreneurs, there were few Black leaders.

It was through these pivotal experiences that The Gray Matter Experience was born, to close the support and access gap, amplify values indigenous to the Black community, and generate more seats at the tables for Black leaders — creating pathways that transform hurdles into stepping stones for budding visionaries.

Advocating for economic equity has always been our guiding principle. Since The Gray Matter Experience’s inception in 2016, we have contributed to narrowing the racial wealth gap by bringing the power of entrepreneurship to more than 1,000 young Black people, investing more than $95,000 in seed funding and pro bono services, and supporting 95 impact-driven entrepreneurs. With roots in the world-class city of Chicago, our curriculum has evolved into a nationally recognized and sought-after model for entrepreneurship education. 

Join us in fostering culturally-responsive learning environments where equity and opportunity thrive. Together, we will empower a new generation of Black changemakers to chart their bold paths and create systemic change within their communities.


Learn more about our innovative bootcamps, immersive national partner programs, and foundational experiences from internships to pitch competitions for young Black people, ages 14 to 24.



Our young change agents have successfully established businesses, created cutting-edge technology and launched social impact initiatives. Explore their businesses.


Elevate your impact by volunteering, partnering with our Program team or joining the board. Take the step today and become a catalyst for positive transformation. 



The Gray Matter Experience inspires, educates, and empowers the next generation of Black changemakers by bridging the entrepreneurial knowledge gap and driving positive community change.

Gray Matter Cohort Student
Gray Matter Cohort Students


The Gray Matter Experience envisions a future where all Black youth are empowered to embrace bold futures and where business leadership equitably includes the talents of Black entrepreneurs.

Gray Matter Cohort Students with Mentor
Gray Matter Cohort Students at Program Kickoff



Read our annual report to see the progress, achievements, and student stories that define our success.

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