Stephone Coward is the CoFounder of BankBlackUSA, and the nonprofit COWRIE Initiative, which leads the #BankBlack grassroots movement through BankBlackUSA. He has managed the #BankBlack online movement since 2016.
Through this work he has learned, explained, and developed solutions around closing the Racial Wealth Gap in communities that have become banking deserts. This recent work focused on providing people with digestible knowledge and information.
Stephone has worked in the banking industry in Dallas Fort Worth for 17 years and has spent that time as an economic empowerment advocate for underserved communities. Through collaboration he works to be a liaison between the community and resources to ensure that everyone has access to tools that lay the foundation for opportunities.
BankBlackUSA was founded in order to continue this advocacy work. It is an initiative that formed out of the larger #BankBlack Movement after deadly police shootings in Black communities in July 2016. This work builds on a long legacy of connecting economic power to improving social and racial justice and equity in America. Minority Depository Institutions can play an integral role in closing the racial wealth gap but are historically under-supported. In 2021, Stephone was named one of Forbes Next 1000, and currently serves on the Board of Impact Ventures.