Facing Race: A National Conference in St. Louis, MO — November 20-22, 2024

La-Tasha Best Gaddy

Business Transfers Program Manager | Democracy at Work Institute
Pronouns: she/her/hers

La-Tasha leads DAWI's collaborative national work to support business transitions to employee ownership. She is a servant leader who is passionate about underrepresented communities, serving on a number of boards, including Board Treasurer of The Collaborative, Board Treasurer of Self-Help Credit Union, Executive Team for City of Durham Small Business Advisory Committee, Treasurer & Co-Founder of NC Employee Ownership Center, Treasurer of The Collaborative, OIGO Advisory Board and Treasurer of Rebuild Durham. She holds Master of Public Administration and Bachelors of Business Administration degrees from North Carolina Central University, and a certificate from The College of Insurance in New York.

Presentations from Facing Race 2022

A Better Future of Work: Closing Racial Wealth Gap and Building an Equitable Economy for ALL through Worker Ownership

Income and wealth inequality, exploitative working conditions, and commercial displacement are critical issues faced by communities across the country. Traditional economic development tools often exacerbate inequalities, particularly for those most marginalized by existing economic policies including low-income communities, recent immigrants, returning citizens, and communities of color.

Worker ownership can create jobs with dignity and opportunities for wealth building. While cities and communities are beginning to explore and invest in employee ownership, the strategy is largely underrecognized despite its proven effectiveness.

This session will demonstrate how communities have used worker ownership strategies to create access to stable employment, put productive assets into the hands of workers, and anchor critical assets in the community. Attendees will discuss how these approaches connect to their needs and priorities and will learn how to take the first steps in developing a worker cooperative project in their communities.

Attendees will leave with a toolkit on how to develop a strategy for preserving BIPOC-owned small businesses and/or small businesses with majority BIPOC workforces through transitions to worker ownership. Attendees will also learn how to support the development of a worker cooperative that provides sustainable work and entrepreneurship opportunities for workers with barriers to employment.

Speakers: La-Tasha Best Gaddy, Zen Trenholm, Anh-Thu Nguyen