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"I didn't know, myself, there were this many Black-owned businesses in this small area"

Pez Davila is a Black man who works with BIPOC (Black, Indigenous and people of color) kids here in Duluth.

So he knows first hand what kinds of messages these kids hear - and he still does, himself. "'You can't do this,'" he says. "It sticks in people's heads."

He knows there are Black entrepreneurs in the northland, but until a throw-away little idea took on a life of its own, he had no idea how many.

The Northland Black Business Showcase begins at 3:00pm this afternoon at the Washington Community Recreation Center.  It's "live and in person," but all state and city COVID-19 guidelines will be observed and masks are mandatory. Temperatures will also be checked at the door. More information is available here.

Lisa Johnson started her broadcast career anchoring the television news at her high school and spinning country music at KWWK/KOLM Radio in Rochester, Minnesota. She was a reporter and news anchor at KTHI in Fargo, ND (not to mention the host of a children's program called "Lisa's Lane") and a radio reporter and anchor in Moorhead, Bismarck, Wahpeton and Fergus Falls.Since 1991, she has hosted Northland Morning on KUMD. One of the best parts of her job includes "paying it forward" by mentoring upcoming journalists and broadcasters on the student news team that helps produce Northland Morning. She also loves introducing the different people she meets in her job to one another, helping to forge new "community connections" and partnerships.Lisa has amassed a book collection weighing over two tons, and she enjoys reading, photography, volunteering with Animal Allies Humane Society and fantasizing about farmland. She goes to bed at 8pm, long before her daughter, two cats, or three dogs.
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