In 2004, August was nationally recognized as Black Business Month after historian John William Timpleton and engineer Frederick E. Jordan Sr. led an effort to raise awareness about Black-owned businesses and their contributions to the country’s economy.
But it wasn’t until two years ago that El Paso officially recognized the months-long celebration, which came after local businesswoman and publisher Monica Tucker created a proclamation that was signed by then Mayor Dee Margo.
“We want to let it be known that we are here, we are truly here,” Tucker said.
The month was intended for all people to support the millions of Black businesses that exist in the United States, according to a Forbes article.
Tucker, who is originally from Aurora, Illinois, is a founder and publisher of Black El Paso Voice, a newspaper and online site that promotes Black businesses in the community and provides an outlet for readers to discuss the Black experience in El Paso.
“We really have no idea how many Black owned businesses are here in El Paso,” Tucker said.