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Eugene Morris

Pioneering advertising executive Eugene Morris, Jr. was born in Chicago, Illinois on July 25, 1939. The youngest of four siblings, Morris was raised in Chicago’s historic Bronzeville neighborhood. Owning several restaurants, Morris’ parents, Eugene Morris, Sr. and Willie Mae Morris, instilled an entrepreneurial spirit in their son. At the age of twelve, Morris and a childhood friend started a junk resale business with local thrift and resale shops as their clients. In 1952, Morris graduated from Forestville Elementary School. He then attended Tilden High School, graduating in 1956.

Morris attended several community colleges, and was later drafted into the U.S. Army in 1962. He was stationed in Kentucky at Fort Knox, in South Carolina at Fort Jackson, and overseas in Germany. By 1968, Morris returned to Chicago and obtained a job with the advertising agency of Foote, Cone, and Belding. He worked for several years at Foote, Cone, and Belding while attending Roosevelt University. In 1969, he received his B.A. degree in business administration and his M.B.A in 1971 from Roosevelt University. During the period between 1974 and 1986, Morris worked as an account supervisor and senior vice president management supervisor at Burrell Advertising Agency. He developed advertising programs for clients including Coca-Cola, McDonald’s and Johnson Products.

In 1987, Morris founded his own advertising agency entitled Eugene Morris Communications, Inc. (EMC). EMC has been ranked as one of Black Enterprise’s top fifteen advertising agencies. EMC’s clientele have included American Family Insurance, Tyson Foods, Illinois Department of Transportation, and Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. EMC has created major multi-cultural and multi-dimensional advertising campaigns that have generated $37.7 million in billings. Morris received the 2005 Martin Luther King Legacy Award from the Martin Luther King Boys and Girls Club for his philanthropic efforts. He has also received the 2006 Illinois Governor’s Small Business Person of the Year Award.

Accession Number

A2006.006

Sex

Male

Interview Date

1/24/2006 |and| 2/1/2006

Last Name

Morris

Maker Category
Schools

Edward Tilden Career Community Academy High School

Carter G. Woodson South Elementary School

Roosevelt University

Kennedy–King College

First Name

Eugene

Birth City, State, Country

Chicago

HM ID

MOR10

Favorite Season

Spring, Summer

State

Illinois

Favorite Vacation Destination

South Africa

Favorite Quote

Common Sense Ain't Common.

Bio Photo
Speakers Bureau Region State

Illinois

Birth Date

7/25/1939

Birth Place Term
Speakers Bureau Region City

Chicago

Country

United States

Favorite Food

Italian Food

Short Description

Advertising chief executive and advertising executive Eugene Morris (1939 - ) owns his own advertising company called Eugene Morris Communications (EMC).

Employment

E. Morris Communications, Inc.

Burrell Advertising

Foote, Cone and Belding

U.S. Post Office

Favorite Color

Green

Timing Pairs
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DAStories

Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of Eugene Morris' interview

Tape: 1 Story: 2 - Eugene Morris lists his favorites

Tape: 1 Story: 3 - Eugene Morris talks about his birth

Tape: 1 Story: 4 - Eugene Morris talks about his siblings

Tape: 1 Story: 5 - Eugene Morris describes his maternal and paternal family histories

Tape: 1 Story: 6 - Eugene Morris describes his earliest childhood memories

Tape: 1 Story: 7 - Eugene Morris describes moving to the Near North Side of Chicago, Illinois

Tape: 1 Story: 8 - Eugene Morris talks about his experience at Sexton Elementary School in Chicago, Illinois

Tape: 1 Story: 9 - Eugene Morris remembers his sixth grade teacher, HistoryMaker Frances T. Matlock

Tape: 1 Story: 10 - Eugene Morris describes his experience at Tilden Career Community Academy High School in Chicago, Illinois

Tape: 2 Story: 1 - Eugene Morris talks about renting a horse to collect scrap metal

Tape: 2 Story: 2 - Eugene Morris describes the racial tensions at Tilden Career Community Academy High School in Chicago, Illinois

Tape: 2 Story: 3 - Eugene Morris talks about his experience on the wrestling team at Tilden Career Community Academy High School in Chicago, Illinois

Tape: 2 Story: 4 - Eugene Morris talks about his shop teacher at Tilden Career Community Academy High School in Chicago, Illinois

Tape: 2 Story: 5 - Eugene Morris talks about his father's restaurants

Tape: 2 Story: 6 - Eugene Morris talks about what kind of student he was at Tilden Career Community Academy High School in Chicago, Illinois

Tape: 2 Story: 7 - Eugene Morris talks about his experience in the City Colleges of Chicago between 1956 and 1962

Tape: 2 Story: 8 - Eugene Morris recalls being drafted into the U.S. Army in 1962

Tape: 2 Story: 9 - Eugene Morris describes being stationed in Germany as a U.S. Army clerk

Tape: 3 Story: 1 - Eugene Morris describes the sights, sounds, and smells of his childhood

Tape: 3 Story: 2 - Eugene Morris describes his experiences with segregation while in the U.S. Army

Tape: 3 Story: 3 - Eugene Morris describes his experience as a company clerk in the U.S. Army at Coleman Barracks in Sandhofen, Germany, pt. 1

Tape: 3 Story: 4 - Eugene Morris describes his experience as a company clerk in the U.S. Army at Coleman Barracks in Sandhofen, Germany, pt. 2

Tape: 3 Story: 5 - Eugene Morris talks about his entrepreneurial experience on Coleman Barracks in Sandhofen, Germany

Tape: 3 Story: 6 - Eugene Morris describes returning to the United States and enrolling at Roosevelt University in Chicago, Illinois

Tape: 3 Story: 7 - Eugene Morris talks about his mother's religion

Tape: 3 Story: 8 - Eugene Morris recalls being hired at the advertising firm Foote, Cone and Belding in 1968

Tape: 3 Story: 9 - Eugene Morris recalls working at Foote, Cone and Belding and studying at Roosevelt University in Chicago, Illinois, pt. 1

Tape: 4 Story: 1 - Eugene Morris recalls working at Foote, Cone and Belding and studying at Roosevelt University in Chicago, Illinois, pt. 2

Tape: 4 Story: 2 - Eugene Morris talks about being oblivious to the 1968 Democratic National Convention protests in Chicago, Illinois

Tape: 4 Story: 3 - Eugene Morris recalls the assassination of President John F. Kennedy in 1963

Tape: 4 Story: 4 - Eugene Morris talks about the assassinations of Bobby Kennedy and Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. in 1968

Tape: 4 Story: 5 - Eugene Morris talks about how his car was stolen after his return from Germany in 1965, pt. 1

Tape: 4 Story: 6 - Eugene Morris talks about how his car was stolen after his return from Germany in 1965, pt. 2

Tape: 4 Story: 7 - Eugene Morris describes his experience as an account executive at Foote, Cone and Belding, pt. 1

Tape: 4 Story: 8 - Eugene Morris describes his experience as an account executive at Foote, Cone and Belding, pt. 2

Tape: 4 Story: 9 - Eugene Morris describes being hired as an account supervisor and media director at Burrell Advertising in 1974

Tape: 4 Story: 10 - Eugene Morris recalls working on advertising campaigns for McDonald's and Coca-Cola at Burrell Advertising

Tape: 4 Story: 11 - Eugene Morris describes the state of black advertising in 1976

Tape: 5 Story: 1 - Eugene Morris talks about changing general market advertising campaigns to work for black audiences

Tape: 5 Story: 2 - Eugene Morris recalls his departure from Burrell Advertising in 1986 and his relationship with HistoryMaker Thomas J. Burrell

Tape: 5 Story: 3 - Eugene Morris describes starting Morris Randall Advertising and E. Morris Communications, Inc. in 1987

Tape: 5 Story: 4 - Eugene Morris recalls the deaths of his parents and his likenesses to them

Tape: 5 Story: 5 - Eugene Morris talks about his early clients at E. Morris Communications, Inc.

Tape: 5 Story: 6 - Eugene Morris shares his total marketing concept

Tape: 5 Story: 7 - Eugene Morris describes losing Oldsmobile as a client in 2001 and how it affected E. Morris Communications, Inc.

Tape: 5 Story: 8 - Eugene Morris describes the quick turnover of business in advertising

Tape: 5 Story: 9 - Eugene Morris describes how E. Morris Communications, Inc. rebounded from the loss of Oldsmobile in 2001

Tape: 6 Story: 1 - Eugene Morris describes his experience working on advertising campaigns for Wal-Mart Stores

Tape: 6 Story: 2 - Eugene Morris describes his approach to marketing to different segments of the African American community

Tape: 6 Story: 3 - Eugene Morris talks about founding the Association of Black-Owned Advertising Agencies

Tape: 6 Story: 4 - Eugene Morris describes his experience working with Wal-Mart Stores, Inc.

Tape: 6 Story: 5 - Eugene Morris describes his experience working with the Illinois Department of Transportation and the reconstruction of the Dan Ryan Expressway

Tape: 6 Story: 6 - Eugene Morris talks about the "Double Dutch" advertising campaign for Tyson Foods, Inc.

Tape: 6 Story: 7 - Eugene Morris describes how he would like to be remembered

Tape: 6 Story: 8 - Eugene Morris reflects on how his parents would view his career

Tape: 6 Story: 9 - Eugene Morris shares his advice for young entrepreneurs

Tape: 6 Story: 10 - Eugene Morris reflects on his faith and marriage

Tape: 7 Story: 1 - Eugene Morris narrates his photographs

DASession

1$1

DATape

1$6

DAStory

9$3

DATitle
Eugene Morris remembers his sixth grade teacher, HistoryMaker Frances T. Matlock
Eugene Morris talks about founding the Association of Black-Owned Advertising Agencies
Transcript
But the teacher who impacted me the most in, in, in, in, in grade school was my sixth grade teacher [at Forestville Elementary School in Chicago, Illinois], and her name was [HM] Frances T. Matlock. And she was a little bitty lady, although she didn't look very little to me, 'cause I was a little bitty kid. I mean I, I grew very late. But she was, she was very tough, very tough, physically tough. I mean she would, she would get very physical. She couldn't exist today, but in those days, I mean she didn't hesitate to lay a little corporal punishment on you if, if you got out of line. But she was a tremendous teacher. She was the first and only teacher until I, I guess sometimes in college where I--she taught us anything about black history. And she was doing this in 1950. And she used to bring, during, during February, she would bring all kinds of materials to school, and we would have skits and plays and things like that. But she taught us a lot about having black pride, I mean, you know, long before anybody ever, ever mentioned it. You know, and she taught us a lot about black historical figures who, at, at a time when nobody was taking about it. And I always--you know, she, she taught us just about, about life and wanting to excel and wanting to live a better life. And she taught us social skills, and, and music, and all kinds of different things that, that went above just the regular curriculum. In fact, I, I might be getting ahead of myself, but I had not, had not seen her for a very long time. And one of the things we, we might talk about this later, but I'm real big on, on celebrating my birthdays. And the, the--my E. Morris [Communications] team here, they know that I really like this, and so they always try to do something to surprise me for my birthday. And so one day I had planned to take off for my birthday, and they called me and told me that something had happened, and I need to come in. And so I came in, and they said it's in, in the conference room. And I went in the conference room, and all these people were in there. And so, I--(unclear)--ah, man, they're just trying to trick--it's a birthday surprise, and I thought it was just the staff. But then when I started looking around, I could see, well, wait a minute, there're some other people here, was a friend who I grew up with, who I, I main--maintained contact with. His mother was here and several other people. And then so I see this little lady, and, but she had her back turned, and I couldn't figure out well, who is this? And at first I thought it might have been one of my aunts, and then I said no, it's not her. And she turned around. It was my sixth grade teacher. They had found her.$$How had the found her?$$And they found her--$$That's so awesome.$$--they found her, and, and I just started screaming: Ms. Matlock, Ms. Matlock, 'cause I had not seen her in forty-five years or something, you know--$$And she was still alive.$$She, she was still alive. In, in fact I found a picture of her that we took that day, because we, we, after the, after we had our little champagne and cake celebration, we, we--they had rented a bus, and we went on a tour of all, a lot of the places where I used to live and where I went school. And Ms. Matlock rode the bus with us and spent the whole day with us. And it was just, it was just a fabulous birthday present.$$That's beautiful--$$Yeah.$$Oh, my goodness.$$Yeah.$$I love that.$$Yeah.$$That's so sweet. Was she proud of you?$$Oh yeah. I mean she brought me, she brought all kinds of--she had these clippings and stuff. She had some things that, some clippings that, of, of, that were written about me in the school newspaper, all kinds of things, you know.$$She had been following you all of these--$$Yeah.$$--years.$$Yep.$$That is such a beautiful story. Ah, I wish it was like that still.$$Yeah.$$Oh, I wanted to ask, were, was your--was Forestville [Elementary School in Chicago, Illinois] integrated at that time?$$No, it was an all-black school. It was located on, on 45th and, and St. Lawrence.$$Oh.$$So it was, it was all-black school.$$So wait now, I guess--were you still living here on the north side then, or--$$No, no, we had moved, we had moved back to the South Side.$$Okay, right, that's what--$$We were always moving.$$Okay, I just wanted to get that--$$I don't know why. I don't know if we were trying to stay one step ahead of the rent man or what, but we moved a lot.$$Okay, that's what I was trying to figure out. I'm like, wow, you had a black teacher here on the North Side. That's really cool.$$Yeah.$And the, the other thing that you've done is, is to form the Association of Black-Owned Advertising Agencies.$$Yes.$$What, what led you to start that?$$Well, it's, it's something that's long overdue, and we've tried to do this before. I mean it's been tried a number of times. And for a number of reasons it, it, it never worked before. But it's important that African American agen--agencies be able to speak with one voice. I'm very vocal, and I'm always mouthing off about what's wrong in our industry, and why do you do this? And I write letters to people, you know, to companies and to the media and all that. But they can blow me off, like well, who are you? You know, you're a little guy. You got a little $40 million dollar agency, you know, what do we care about you? But if you have ten agencies or twenty agencies, and we're all saying the same thing, we write a letter, and everybody is on the, you know, is a signatory to it, then people have to pay a little bit more attention to it. And so, we have a lot of problems and a lot of challenges within our industry, and some of them are very specific to African American agencies. And so we need to be addressing those. And I think fortunately, because I have been around a very long time, and I think that I have always conducted myself in a way, tried to make people respect me, tried to operate above board, be a person of my word, know the people, people know that they can count on me, so I, I, I think I was able to get a bunch of agencies in the room, and they know that I didn't have a real agenda, other than this is something that we all need to do for our collective good. It's not just for, for Eugene Morris.

Blanton Canady

McDonald’s owner/operator Blanton Canady was born November 25, 1948 in West Point, Georgia. His father was West Point’s first black police officer and his mother was a graduate of Talladega College. Canady attended Robert S. Abbott Elementary School in Chicago and graduated from Tilden Technical High School in 1966. At the University of Illinois, Canady was active in the African American Studies program where Val Gray Ward mentored him. He earned his B.A. degree in 1970 and was hired by Illinois Bell in telecommunications. While there, he enrolled in the University of Chicago and was awarded his M.B.A. degree in 1975.

Canady was hired at Xerox Corporation in 1973, but moved to American Hospital Supply in 1976. In 1980, a friend introduced him to the opportunity of owning a McDonald’s franchise. Assisted by his brothers Ronald and Mitchell, Canady obtained a franchise and then grew his business to seven restaurants with millions of dollars in sales. Following in the footsteps of Chicago’s Herman Petty, the first black McDonald’s licensee, Canady became active in the National Black McDonalds Owners Association (NBMOA) as president of the Great Lakes Region. Canady owns five restaurants including one at McCormick Place and another at Chicago’s Navy Pier.

Active on the boards of the Midwest Sickle Cell Anemia Foundation and the New South Planning Board, Canady and his wife,Yvonne, have two children.

Accession Number

A2005.002

Sex

Male

Interview Date

1/6/2005

Last Name

Canady

Maker Category
Marital Status

Married

Schools

Edward Tilden Career Community Academy High School

University of Chicago

Robert S. Abbott Elementary School

University of Illinois at Urbana–Champaign

First Name

Blanton

Birth City, State, Country

West Point

HM ID

CAN02

Favorite Season

Christmas

State

Georgia

Favorite Vacation Destination

Jamaica, Hawaii

Favorite Quote

There's Three Sides To Every Story. Your Side, My Side, And The Truth.

Bio Photo
Speakers Bureau Region State

Illinois

Birth Date

11/25/1948

Birth Place Term
Speakers Bureau Region City

Chicago

Country

United States

Favorite Food

Fried Chicken

Short Description

Restaurant owner and operator Blanton Canady (1948 - ) owned and operated eleven McDonalds restaurants, and was active in the National Black McDonald’s Operators Association, served as president of the Great Lakes region of the association.

Employment

McDonald's

American Hospital Supply Corporation

Xerox Corporation

Illinois Bell Telephone Company

Favorite Color

Brown

Timing Pairs
0,0:17446,290:18160,298:18670,304:56633,751:70028,987:71315,1012:87445,1176:88235,1187:97095,1295:135450,1739$0,0:6270,85:7030,96:99620,1004:100040,1012:100320,1017:101580,1044:139763,1472:140274,1480:179977,1960:204540,2251:231764,2566:244130,2724:254214,2804:259250,2876
DAStories

Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of Blanton Canady's interview

Tape: 1 Story: 2 - Blanton Canady lists his favorites

Tape: 1 Story: 3 - Blanton Canady describes his mother's family background

Tape: 1 Story: 4 - Blanton Canady talks about his mother's childhood

Tape: 1 Story: 5 - Blanton Canady describes how his parents met

Tape: 1 Story: 6 - Blanton Canady describes his father's family background

Tape: 1 Story: 7 - Blanton Canady describes his father's personality

Tape: 1 Story: 8 - Blanton Canady talks about relocating to Chicago, Illinois as a boy

Tape: 1 Story: 9 - Blanton Canady talks about his siblings

Tape: 1 Story: 10 - Blanton Canady describes his parents' personalities and who he takes after

Tape: 1 Story: 11 - Blanton Canady describes his earliest childhood memory

Tape: 1 Story: 12 - Blanton Canady describes the sights, sounds, and smells of West Point, Georgia

Tape: 1 Story: 13 - Blanton Canady describes his experience at Robert S. Abbott Elementary School in Chicago, Illinois

Tape: 2 Story: 1 - Blanton Canady describes his elementary school experience in Georgia

Tape: 2 Story: 2 - Blanton Canady describes forgetting his eighth grade valedictorian address

Tape: 2 Story: 3 - Blanton Canady describes his experience at Tilden High School in Chicago, Illinois

Tape: 2 Story: 4 - Blanton Canady recalls memorable teachers at Tilden High School in Chicago, Illinois

Tape: 2 Story: 5 - Blanton Canady describes his computer software class at Tilden High School in Chicago, Illinois

Tape: 2 Story: 6 - Blanton Canady talks about his early career interests in architecture

Tape: 2 Story: 7 - Blanton Canady describes his experience at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Tape: 2 Story: 8 - Blanton Canady speaks about HistoryMaker Val Gray Ward and the black studies program at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Tape: 2 Story: 9 - Blanton Canady describes the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign's 'Black Student Union's Project 500'

Tape: 2 Story: 10 - Blanton Canady describes pledging Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, pt. 1

Tape: 2 Story: 11 - Blanton Canady describes pledging Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, pt. 2

Tape: 3 Story: 1 - Blanton Canady describes his education at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Tape: 3 Story: 2 - Blanton Canady talks about deciding to pursue an M.B.A. at the University of Chicago in Chicago, Illinois

Tape: 3 Story: 3 - Blanton Canady describes his experience in the M.B.A. program at the University of Chicago in Chicago, Illinois

Tape: 3 Story: 4 - Blanton Canady speaks about his experience in the U.S. National Guard

Tape: 3 Story: 5 - Blanton Canady describes his experience working at the Xerox Corporation while enrolled at the University of Chicago in Chicago, Illinois

Tape: 3 Story: 6 - Blanton Canady describes being recruited by the American Hospital Supply Corporation

Tape: 3 Story: 7 - Blanton Canady talks about developing an interest in entrepreneurship

Tape: 3 Story: 8 - Blanton Canady describes what he learned from his experience with the American Hospital Supply Coroporation

Tape: 3 Story: 9 - Blanton Canady describes his experience at the American Hospital Supply Corporation

Tape: 4 Story: 1 - Blanton Canady describes his experience at the American Hospital Supply Corporation

Tape: 4 Story: 2 - Blanton Canady describes his start in restaurant franchising, pt. 1

Tape: 4 Story: 3 - Blanton Canady describes his start in restaurant franchising, pt. 2

Tape: 4 Story: 4 - Blanton Canady talks about the rewards in risk-taking

Tape: 4 Story: 5 - Blanton Canady talks about his first McDonald's franchise

Tape: 4 Story: 6 - Blanton Canady describes the difficulties of restaurant management

Tape: 4 Story: 7 - Blanton Canady describes the pitfalls of managing a McDonald's franchise

Tape: 4 Story: 8 - Blanton Canady describes his management style

Tape: 4 Story: 9 - Blanton Canady explains the consequences of poor management at a McDonald's franchise

Tape: 4 Story: 10 - Blanton Canady talks about black McDonald's owner-operators in Chicago, Illinois

Tape: 5 Story: 1 - Blanton Canady talks about the first African American McDonald's owner-operator, Herman Petty

Tape: 5 Story: 2 - Blanton Canady describes his proudest moment at McDonald's

Tape: 5 Story: 3 - Blanton Canady talks about black-owned McDonald's locations in the Chicago area

Tape: 5 Story: 4 - Blanton Canady talks about choosing themes for his McDonald's restaurants

Tape: 5 Story: 5 - Blanton Canady lists the volunteer organizations he is involved in

Tape: 5 Story: 6 - Blanton Canady describes being elected president to the McDonald's Association of Chicagoland

Tape: 5 Story: 7 - Blanton Canady describes his future plans as part of McDonald's Corporation

Tape: 5 Story: 8 - Blanton Canady explains the challenges in restaurant management

Tape: 5 Story: 9 - Blanton Canady talks about senior citizen employment in the McDonald's corporation

Tape: 5 Story: 10 - Blanton Canady addresses criticism of McDonald's

Tape: 5 Story: 11 - Blanton Canady expresses his hopes and concerns for the African American community

Tape: 5 Story: 12 - Blanton Canady shares success stories about former employees

Tape: 5 Story: 13 - Blanton Canady reflects on what he would have done differently in his career

Tape: 6 Story: 1 - Blanton Canady talks about his family's involvement in his McDonald's franchises

Tape: 6 Story: 2 - Blanton Canady speaks about the deaths of his older brothers

Tape: 6 Story: 3 - Blanton Canady talks about his children

Tape: 6 Story: 4 - Blanton Canady reflects upon his legacy

Tape: 6 Story: 5 - Blanton Canady describes how he would like to be remembered

DASession

1$1

DATape

5$5

DAStory

1$2

DATitle
Blanton Canady talks about the first African American McDonald's owner-operator, Herman Petty
Blanton Canady describes his proudest moment at McDonald's
Transcript
Okay, you were telling us about Herman Petty and the first McDonald's franchise.$$The first African American McDonald's owner-operator and he started in 1967, right after the King [Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.] riots [1968] here in Chicago and he was catapulted into his career and shortly after that, he and, I think, one or two other operators, two that came after him, around '68 [1968], '69 [1969], and a business consultant for McDonald's by the name of Roland Jones, they were having problems running their restaurants and they had no one to turn to. They didn't have a group of people other than the company and the company really didn't have a lot of experience of running restaurants in the inner city and so they formed this group, basically it was three of them plus the, the company representative called the Black McDonald's Owners Association [sic, National Black McDonald's Operators Association] and it was a self-help group and they had meetings every week and just talked about shared ideas, shared experiences, collectively tried to help each other solve problems and that's how it all began. And today, we're over 500 strong, we're all a billion dollars in sales, nationally, and it's, it's such a proud thing to be a part of because of what we've accomplished not only for ourselves and our families but in the communities that we serve. There's so many programs that we have, both on a national, local basis that, that offer our help to the communities and it's probably one of the untold stories really that's out there in terms of, a lot of it we don't seek publicity for and rightly so but each and every one of us is involved in some way in our own communities. So, it's, it's a great story to tell.$$$One of the, the huge things that I feel very proud of in my McDonald's experience is that I was part of a, of a movement, if you will, that really identified with McDonald's Corporation, the opportunity to be more fair and equitable in terms of the restaurants that we, as African Americans owned and operated, and we reached an agreement about seven years ago that in five years we would achieve what we termed parity and we were looking at one point in time, we were at the bottom, the African American operators were at the bottom of every success measure that McDonald's had, whether it be sales, customer accounts, whether it be profitability, a number of stores, as well as a number of operators as a percentage of our, our population. So we struck a deal. There were twenty-one of us that went to Oak Brook [Illinois] and it was under Reggie Welch leadership and we negotiated what we call in turn, parity. It was a five-year plan to take us from the bottom, to even. And I'm very proud to say that we were successful in doing that. Right now the African American restaurants lead the country in sales comparable to our white counterparts in profitability and as a number of stores and number of owner-operators, we represent about eighteen percent, very close to the SMSA [Standard Metropolitan Statistical Area], the census of what we represent in the population which was our goal and I had a very direct role to play in that which I'm very proud of. I was elected president of one of our divisions for National Black McDonald's and it was a Great Lakes Division which covered about eight states and I was in charge of the parity of movement, if you will, for that division and we were one of the first to achieve it. So, that's something that we really look as a legacy to hand down to the new operators coming in and as we, as we move forward in this process, you know our real determination now is not to lose the gains that we've achieved, that can happen very easily, and to maintain what we've accomplished and still have diligence towards the profitability. So when you asked the question, you know earlier about is there a way to mess it up, well, some of that is not of our own doing. You can have an extremely old facility that's broke down and hard to run in a tough area and you can have some very significant problems. One of the things I'm not proud to say, you know, we probably had as a percentage of our operators, a higher number of bankruptcies with African American operators than any other segment before parity. So in every success measure you want to take, we were at the bottom before we got involved in this particular development and it was, it was very--and I think McDonald's looks at it as a win-win today because they're garnering more sales through our efforts than before and so it's a positive thing for everyone concerned.