Since 2014, we have worked diligently to assess the barriers and obstacles to success for Black, Brown, and Women-owned businesses; and reverse-engineered our processes to develop systems of social change delivering access to the tools and the resources needed to start and grow successful businesses. 

Our goal is to make our unique system of entrepreneur training and support accessible to all entrepreneurs pushing through challenging systems of inequity while working to reach their version of the American Dream. As the nation begins to rebuild local economies after the devastation caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, Black, Brown, and minority entrepreneurs need support more than ever to start, grow and scale their businesses.

In the next five years, our goal is to expand the MORTAR network to 15 new cities. By establishing place-based programming in environments ripe for minority-small business growth MORTAR hopes to help entrepreneurs reach their dreams, build transferrable generational wealth for their families, and drive booming local economies.


to learn more about our program locations








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As our work in Cincinnati garners both our organization and our alumni national attention, organizations across the country want to know how they can duplicate our success for entrepreneurs in their area.

MORTAR’s expansion program is our response to this call. Our goal is to make our unique system of entrepreneur training and support accessible to all the doers and dreamers working toward reaching their version of the American Dream.


Renaissance Covington is a 501(c)3 nonprofit that amplifies the vibrancy of Downtown Covington’s evolving community. Covington is an accredited Kentucky and National Main Street Program as well as a Certified Creative District by the Kentucky Arts Council. Renaissance Covington was the recipient of the 2017 Great American Main Street Award. We embrace local culture, historic preservation, independent businesses and creativity throughout our work.


Tulsa, Oklahoma the home of the Black Wall Street. The Greenwood district was the Black economic and cultural mecca until 1921, where a mob of white men burned and destroyed the community.  100 years later, it is an honor to be apart of the Black entrepreneurial ecosystem. 


The Porter House KC is a inner city based co-working community who provides entrepreneurship access and resources to underserved populations in the Kansas City Metro area.  Our mission is to be a bridge for underrepresented individuals that typically don’t have access to the entrepreneurial dream.



MORTAR at Bounce is a 15-week business accelerator that helps  existing and emerging entrepreneurs learn the nuances of business ownership and build a comprehensive business canvas.  


RISE was adapted from the highly successful Cincinnati based minority business accelerator program called MORTAR. The African American Chamber has formed a strategic partnership between
 LISC Milwaukee and The Milwaukee Urban League as a component of the Ramp Up Project. RISE curriculum will focus on enabling underserved entrepreneurs through education, guidance, and mentorship. 



Before two of MORTAR’s founders, Allen & Derrick landed in Cincinnati, they were both living in Indianapolis, and very connected to the entrepreneurial landscape. Once they got MORTAR off of the ground and started considering the possibilities of expanding MORTAR’s reach to other cities, Indianapolis was definitely in our top 5 list of potential destinations.

Historically, Indianapolis has deep roots in the soil of Black Entrepreneurship, and we’re truly excited to give back to the city that gave us so much. With the support of The Indianapolis Foundation (an affiliate of Central Indiana Community Foundation) and a Community Advisory Council full of individuals and organizations that want to make entrepreneurship more equitable throughout Central Indiana, MORTAR officially joins the Indianapolis Ecosystem in the Spring of 2022. 

The pilot program will launch on April 14, 2022, and will be a fast-track version of the MORTAR Entrepreneurship Academy that lasts 8-weeks and will give participants an opportunity to start or scale their businesses, while also gaining a glimpse into the future of small business empowerment throughout the city.  

Applications for the fast-track cohort will close on March 18th, 2022. Applications submitted after this time will be considered for the first 15-week cohort, currently scheduled to begin in the Fall.

The easiest (and possibly the fastest) way for you to reach us
is to fill out this form – we promise to get back with you promptly.