Black entrepreneurs ring the Nasdaq bell

by Ana Lopez

Nasdaq on Friday host of the New Voices Foundation and Essence Ventures, inviting some of the most prominent black professionals within the venture and startup space behind the stage to help open up the markets.

While this isn’t the first time Nasdaq has honored Black History Month, some who were there commented that “history is made.” And indeed, this opening bell felt different. Shila Nieve Burney, the founder of Zane Capital, told that the day felt like all the black ancestors looked down on them and said, “Great job.” “We rang the bell for Zane and for all the other black and brown people who built Wall Street but were denied access to the wealth.”

For investor Tiana Tukes, the experience felt bigger than just ringing the doorbell. “On the surface, Friday’s ceremony was about opening the Nasdaq, but for us the experience symbolized opening doors for now and future generations,” she told “As the bell rang, I imagined that somewhere someone who looked like us heard his call and knew that one day they would be next, and we would cheer for them.”

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