If you haven’t heard about Shea Moisture, you and your whole beauty routine is missing out. Shea Moisture is the global lifestyle brand for women and men. Shea Moisture is the brand that is perfect cosmetics, bath, body, hair, and skincare. (Anything for skin and hair by Shea Moisture is my personal favorite). But do you know the history that shaped Shea Moisture ?
The origin of Shea Moisture was started by the powerful African woman , Sofi Tucker. Sofi Tucker started selling Shea Nuts at the village market in Sierra Leone in 1912. Sofi Tucker was a young ninteen year old who was a widowed mother of four children. Sofi Tucker would sell her homemade creation on the countryside. Sofi Tucker would sell shea Butter, African Black Soap and her homemade hair and skin preparations. Sofi Tucker’s legacy is Shea Moisture. If I was to give Sofi Tucker a nickname, I would call her “OG Mamma of Shea”.
Richelieu Dennis is the CEO of Shea Moisture and Sundial Brands. Richelieu Dennis has proven that the American Dream can be fulfilled for many immigrants. Richelieu Dennis came to the United States to attend Babson College. After college, Richelieu partnered with Nyema Tubman to address hair and skin issues ignored by major mass market companies. Richelieu also wanted to carry on his grandmothers legacy, Sofi Tucker. Shea Moisture is the reflection of Sofi Tucker, and Richelieu Dennis has done an amazing job at carrying on his grandmothers legacy.
Women of color go through many hardships everyday, especially attempting to start their own business. Richelieu Dennis is helping to pave the way for women of color to start their own business. All women have it hard in today’s world, but women of color face more conflicts attempting to start a business. According to Black Enterprise, “Women founders received less than 3% of VC dollars in 2018. Investment in black female founders—who in recent years have been starting businesses at higher rates than any other group, so they’re not hard to find—was barely discernible, at .02%.” Richelieu Dennis started the 100 million dollar fund for women of color to start their own businesses. This fund is known as The New Voices Fund. You would think this story ends, but it gets even more awesome. The first self made woman millionaire, Madam C. J. Walker, built the Irvington mansion. The Irvington Mansion was bought by self made billionaire Richelieu Dennis. These two power players made their fortunes catering to primarily to women of color.
Madam C. J. Walker is the reason why women with natural hair are able to properly maintain their hair on a daily basis. Madam C. J. Walker catered her hair products to African Americans. Madam C. J. Walker’s parents were recently freed slaves. She was also donated the largest amount of money by an African-American toward the construction of an Indianapolis YMCA in 1913. Madam C. J. Walker and Richelieu Dennis are two people of color that truly paved the way for women of color.
Richelieu Dennis has the plan to hold small retreats of a program developed by Richelieu Dennis. But before he does this, he wants to restore the Irvington Mansion to its original glory. It was clarified that the “graduates” would consist of ten to twelve women across the world every six months.This would mean more businesses owned by women of color in less than a decade. This would all be thanks to Richelieu Dennis. I find it awesome how Richelieu Dennis is catering to his roots to change the world. He is not only creating a legacy for himself, but still carrying his grandmothers legacy.