We had the good fortune of connecting with Jamal Phillips and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Jamal, looking back, what do you think was the most difficult decision you’ve had to make?
The most difficult decision I’ve had to make was opting to relocate to Dallas from the Northeast. Aside from being 1500+ miles away from what I was accustomed to (friends, family, social life, etc.), I was more focused on maintaining my mental state. Living in a new environment where you’re organically forced to meet new people is a challenge in itself. This is primarily why Black Millennials of Dallas, LLC was born. It was created to bring the Dallas community together, specifically targeted for new transplants that are getting acclimated to the area and eager to meet new people.
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
We’ve recently celebrated our 1 Year anniversary of which will be my most memorable event. A year ago, we really had no vision or defined mission for the group, but as time progressed, the BMD committee has created a blue print that is signature to our brand today. We brainstormed and strategized for a while on how we wanted to celebrate our 1 year and the key word was “intentional”. We hosted a family reunion style picnic at a local park in Grand Prairie, Tx. A beautiful day filled with everything BLACK OWNED — food trucks, vendors, DJ, and even down to our apparel and graphic designer. We were intentional with wanting to have fun but also patronize our black-owned businesses in the area. This is what separates us apart for others; we try to come up with unique and catchy event ideas with philanthropic goals.
We’ve curated 20+ events, each one averaging 60-100 attendees. No, it’s not easy. No, we did not expect this turn out. Yes, it takes up a lot our time. We’ve created a brand where attendees near and far come for the vibes and experience. As a committee, we’re faced with daily challenges as we have our own professional lives outside of BMD. This is why we foster a balance and our personal matters will always come before BMD. We crank out events when we have the proper time and availability to do so — I don’t want this feeling like a job to the committee members.
I have better business tactics, communication skills, and relationship management just by being apart of BMD. I hope everyone else is gaining something as well. That is how we measure success!
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
Deep Ellum is a great area with tons of things to do! Legacy Hall, in Plano, is a foodie’s heaven, as well as Grandscape in the Colony! We also love to frequent local black owned businesses, such as CRU Hookah Lounge, Pangea, Turkey Leg Paradise, 4Thirteen Sports Lounge and Kitchen & Kocktails.
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
Major shoutout to Black Millennials of Dallas (BMD)! This group has been super impactful, not only for myself, but for many other millennials in the area. We are not only a social group that curates events — we have turned into a family. This created bond is special to me because we’ve grown together despite the current pandemic and started a movement that everyone wants to be apart of. None of this would be possible without the joint help from the BMD Committee — Kai (Co-founder), Moriah, Sade, Shan, Asonye, and Dyani. Also, I would like to recognize the many other Dallas social groups, sponsors, vendors, venues, etc. that has been apart of BMD’s success –Thank you!
Facebook: Black Millennials of Dallas
Photo credits: Matt Hargroves Photos & Black Millennials of Dallas