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Earl G. Graves, Sr.

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Information about Earl G. Graves, Sr.

Profile image of Earl G. Graves, Sr.

Profession

Category:
MediaMakers
Occupation(s):
Magazine Publishing Chief Executive

Favorites

Favorite Color:
Purple
Favorite Food:
Chicken
Favorite Time of Year:
Winter
Favorite Vacation Spot:
Colorado
Favorite Quote:
Easy has never been a part of our vocabulary.

Birthplace

Born:
1/9/1935
Birth Location:
New York, New York

Profession

Category:
MediaMakers
Occupation(s):
Magazine Publishing Chief Executive

Favorites

Favorite Color:
Purple
Favorite Food:
Chicken
Favorite Time of Year:
Winter
Favorite Vacation Spot:
Colorado
Favorite Quote:
Easy has never been a part of our vocabulary.

Birthplace

Born:
1/9/1935
Birth Location:
New York
See how Earl G. Graves, Sr. is related to other HistoryMakers

Biography

Earl G. Graves was raised in the Bedford Stuyvesant section of New York, where he learned hard work and perseverance from his parents, Earl Godwin and Winifred Sealy Graves. After receiving a B.A. in economics from Morgan State University he served two years in the Army, followed by a three year stint as Senator Robert F. Kennedy's administrative assistant. After Kennedy's assassination Graves entered the business arena, where he was to realize unprecedented success.

Since founding Black Enterprise Magazine in 1970, Earl Graves has been named one of the ten most outstanding minority businessmen in the country by the President of the United States, and received the National Award of Excellence in recognition of his achievements in minority business enterprise. Black Enterprise Magazine is recognized as the definitive resource for African American business professionals, entrepreneurs and policy makers in the public and private sectors.

Graves is President and Chief Executive Officer of Earl G. Graves, Ltd., parent corporation for the Earl G. Graves Publishing Company which publishes Black Enterprise Magazine. He also serves as Chairman and CEO of Pepsi-Cola of Washington, D.C., L.P., the largest minority-controlled Pepsi-Cola franchise in the U.S. He is also a General Partner of Egoli Beverages, L.P., the Pepsi-Cola franchise bottler of South Africa.

In 1999, he received the 84th NAACP Spingarn Medal, the highest achievement award for African Americans. He was named one of the Top 100 Business News Luminaries of the Century, and his book "How to Succeed in Business Without Being White" was listed among the New York Times and Wall Street Journals Business Best Sellers. A staunch advocate of higher education, Graves is committed to advancing business education and opportunities for our nation's youth. He has also been recognized for his business leadership and community service by the US Department of Commerce, the City of New York and the National Conference for Community and Justice, among others.

He resided in New York with his late wife of 37 years, Barbara, with whom he had three sons.

See how Earl G. Graves, Sr. is related to other HistoryMakers
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  • Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of Earl Graves interview
  • Tape: 1 Story: 2 - Earl Graves's favorite things
  • Tape: 1 Story: 3 - Earl Graves talks about his father's personality
  • Tape: 1 Story: 4 - Earl Graves talks about his father's background
  • Tape: 1 Story: 5 - Earl Graves describes his mother's personality
  • Tape: 1 Story: 6 - Earl Graves talks about how his childhood neighborhood in Brooklyn has changed
  • Tape: 1 Story: 7 - Earl Graves recalls trying to improve the community in Bedford-Stuyvesant
  • Tape: 1 Story: 8 - Earl Graves describes the values that come with his West Indian heritage
  • Tape: 1 Story: 9 - Earl Graves talks about his childhood aspirations
  • Tape: 2 Story: 1 - Earl Graves talks about his high school experience
  • Tape: 2 Story: 2 - Earl Graves talks about attending college at Morgan State University
  • Tape: 2 Story: 3 - Earl Graves discusses adjusting to life on campus
  • Tape: 2 Story: 4 - Earl Graves briefly discusses his father's death
  • Tape: 2 Story: 5 - Earl Graves describes his experience in the Armed Forces
  • Tape: 2 Story: 6 - Earl Graves talks about meeting his wife
  • Tape: 2 Story: 7 - Earl Graves talks about his first job in real estate
  • Tape: 2 Story: 8 - Earl Graves describes how he first got involved in politics
  • Tape: 2 Story: 9 - Earl Graves describes his experience working for Senator Robert F. Kennedy
  • Tape: 3 Story: 1 - Earl Graves talks about his study of entrepreneurship in Barbados
  • Tape: 3 Story: 2 - Earl Graves describes the first stages of his business career
  • Tape: 3 Story: 3 - Earl Graves discusses the possibility of publishing 'Black Enterprise' as a newsletter
  • Tape: 3 Story: 4 - Earl Graves talks about his original vision for 'Black Enterprise' magazine
  • Tape: 3 Story: 5 - Earl Graves briefly describes the first issue of 'Black Enterprise' magazine
  • Tape: 3 Story: 6 - Earl Graves describes facing adversity during the early years of 'Black Enterprise' magazine
  • Tape: 3 Story: 7 - Earl Graves talks about the first African Americans on the boards of major corporations
  • Tape: 3 Story: 8 - Earl Graves talks about starting the 'Black Enterprise' 100 list of influential African Americans in business
  • Tape: 3 Story: 9 - Earl Graves talks about the major accomplishments of Black Enterprise magazine
  • Tape: 3 Story: 10 - Earl Graves discusses promoting Black Enterprise in the business world
  • Tape: 3 Story: 11 - Earl Graves talks about outside praise for Black Enterprise magazine
  • Tape: 3 Story: 12 - Earl Graves briefly discusses the state of African American business
  • Tape: 3 Story: 13 - Earl Graves talks about being politically active
  • Tape: 4 Story: 1 - Earl Graves talks about his future plans
  • Tape: 4 Story: 2 - Earl Graves discusses the importance of family
  • Tape: 4 Story: 3 - Earl Graves discusses his legacy
  • Tape: 4 Story: 4 - Earl Graves evaluates his success in relation to his parents' wishes
  • Tape: 4 Story: 5 - Photo - Earl Graves showcases 'Black Enterprise' Top 100 [1976]
  • Tape: 4 Story: 6 - Photo - Earl Graves and actor Sidney Poitier receive awards
  • Tape: 4 Story: 7 - Photo - Earl Graves with Nelson Mandela and Randall Robinson
  • Tape: 4 Story: 8 - Photo - Earl Graves's elementary class photo [1947]
  • Tape: 4 Story: 9 - Photo - Earl Graves with his family
  • Tape: 4 Story: 10 - Photo - Earl Graves's parents
  • Tape: 4 Story: 11 - Photo - Earl Graves with his wife, Barbara, and their grandchildren
  • Tape: 4 Story: 12 - Photo - Earl Graves named to Senator Robert F. Kennedy's staff [1965]
  • Tape: 4 Story: 13 - Photo - Earl Graves at an entrepreneurs conference [1996]
  • Tape: 4 Story: 14 - Photo - Earl Graves oses with National Council of Negro Women National President Dorothy Height and First Lady Barbara Bush
  • Tape: 4 Story: 15 - Photo - Earl Graves supports a Civil Rights march
  • Tape: 4 Story: 16 - Photo - A cover of 'Black Enterprise' magazine
  • Tape: 4 Story: 17 - Photo - Earl Graves with President Bill Clinton
  • Tape: 4 Story: 18 - Photo - Earl Graves shares a moment with businessman Percy C. Sutton
  • Tape: 4 Story: 19 - Photo - Earl Graves receives an honorary degree from Howard University
  • Tape: 4 Story: 20 - Photo - Earl Graves poses with First Lady Rosalyn Carter and President Jimmy Carter
  • Tape: 4 Story: 21 - Photo - Earl Graves shakes hands with President Ronald Reagan
  • Tape: 4 Story: 22 - Photo - Earl Graves and President Richard Nixon
  • Tape: 4 Story: 23 - Photo - Earl Graves's wife, Barbara Graves
  • Tape: 4 Story: 24 - Photo - Earl Graves and his young sons [1970]
  • Tape: 4 Story: 25 - Photo - Earl Graves and his sons [1975]
  • Tape: 4 Story: 26 - Photo - Earl Graves and sons at headquarters of Earl G. Graves Ltd. [1990]
  • Tape: 4 Story: 27 - Photo - Earl Graves Poses with Muhammad Ali
  • Tape: 4 Story: 28 - Photo - Earl Graves joins celebrity friends at a golf challenge [1995]
  • Tape: 4 Story: 29 - Photo - Earl Graves addresses the 'Black Enterprise' Top 100 [1976]
  • Tape: 4 Story: 30 - Photo - Earl Graves and his sons jogging