• The Talented Tenth is a term that designated a leadership class of African Americans in the early twentieth century. The term was publicized by W. E. B. Du Bois in an influential essay of the same name, which he published in September 1903. It appeared in The Negro Problem, a collection of essays written by leading African Americans.[1]

    The phrase “talented tenth” originated in 1896 among Northern white liberals, specifically the American Baptist Home Mission Society. They had the goal of establishing black colleges to train Negro teachers and elites.

    Greenville’s Talented Tenth Conference connects young and professional People of Color with established business and civic leaders from across the Southeast.

    The goals are to

    1) recruit and retain young talent to the Greenville region, and

    2) facilitate the development of the next generation of leaders.

    This unique networking and educational opportunity blends one on one access to top leaders, insight into the political and economic dynamics of Greenville, and professional development with upscale social events.

    The conference activities provide an opportunity for young professionals to learn more about Greenville, and become more engaged in Greenville’s civic life and enjoy social activities around town like Artisphere, Downtown Alive, and Main Street Fridays!

    The Talented Tenth Conference is the first event of its kind in Greenville and is designed to bring talented, young people of color from across the Greenville Region together and provide them with a unique opportunity to further their professional development.


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