Credit: Photo Courtesy of the African American Chamber of Commerce of New Jersey)

Knowles, 72, well-respected for his savvy and candid business acumen, is possibly better known as the father of two famous daughters, Beyoncé and Solange. And as the visionary who formerly managed the careers of both of his daughters and Destiny’s Child, it’s a moniker he proudly embraces.

During his 20-minute speech, Knowles said challenges and obstacles are part of life – a message he shared early on with his daughters.
“One thing I taught Beyoncé and Solange was to practice and be prepared for failure,” he said. “We would practice what to do when something goes wrong.”
The no-nonsense lessons Knowles shared resonated with his daughters as they flourished both professionally and personally.

Knowles, 72, who grew up in poverty in rural, segregated Alabama, said success should focus on the final destination and accolades and explore and examine the journey that got you there. “Whether you’re a performer or artist, or an entrepreneur or professional, practice how you will respond in the event you fail.”

John Harmon, president and CEO of the AACCNJ, lauded the attendees and sponsors of the annual Corporate Awards Dinner, including Columbia Bank, TD Bank, Chase Bank, 20 Twenty Business Advisors and Tito’s Handmade Vodka.
New Jersey-based attorney and an exclusive event sponsor, Tanya Freeman, also delivered remarks during which she highlighted the Tulsa Race Massacre and the resilience of Black business owners who refused to let their dreams die in the wake of the tragic events. She also commented on the recent U.S. Supreme Court ruling that reversed affirmative action in college admission policies.

“Many of us believe that this is the beginning of an attempt to dismantle DEI (Diversity, Equity, Inclusion),” she said. “Others of you may be unsure whether DEI issues are still important. DEI will not die on our watch.”

Award recipients included:
Chris Carothers, president, FCC Consulting Services, Trenton, NJ.; Thomas Kemly, president & CEO, Columbia Bank, based in Fair Lawn, NJ.; John W. Kennedy, CEO Emeritus, Jersey Manufacturing Extension Program, based in Cedar Knolls, NJ.; Zach Lewis, president, Lewis Consulting Group, based in Manasquan, NJ.; and Nikkia McClain, president, Tene Nicole Creative Agency, based in New York, NY.

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