The Black publishing world is mourning the loss of an industry pioneer Tuesday.

Earl Graves, Sr., the man who championed Black wealth, financial literacy, entrepreneurship and legacy building with his imprint Black Enterprise magazine, has passed away after a battle with Alzheimers.

Graves’ son, the current president and CEO of Black Enterprise, Earl “Butch” Graves, Jr. shared the news via social media.

“At 9:22 p.m. this evening, April 6, my father and hero Earl Graves Sr., the founder of Black Enterprise, passed away quietly after a long battle with Alzheimer’s. I loved and admired this giant of a man, and am blessed to be his namesake. LOVE YOU DAD!” he tweeted.

Like ESSENCE, Black Enterprise has served at the forefront of Black business, news and entertainment for decades. 

Graves Sr., founded Black Enterprise in 1970 at a time when African Americans needed resources to survive and thrive on our own in this country. Black Enterprise was and is still considered to be the Bible for Black entrepreneurship, having inspired millions of Black Americans over the past 50 years to create companies and own their wealth.

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Our thoughts and prayers are with the Graves and Black Enterprise families during this time.


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