As upfront plans are being made, we will focus on holding companies and decision-makers accountable. We will discuss how to make the changes necessary to ensure economic equality for Black-Owned Media companies and set benchmarks to measure the evolution.

Presented By The GRIO

In a transformative year when social upheaval and the need for African American inclusion and economic equality in our multibillion-dollar advertising industry has become clear, the next step needed is to put accountability in place. Business is about numbers and setting goals, and the time for action and fairness must be now. Advertising is the most powerful cultural influencer available, and as an industry, the planning process needs to continually evolve to include Black Owned Media.

That’s why THE WEATHER CHANNEL, ALLEN MEDIA GROUP, LLC’s Byron Allen and TheGrio’s Natasha Alford are presenting a conversation with other CEOs on how to stop the systemic racism that continues in the advertising world. This important webinar will provide first-hand insights and guidance on how we can collectively effect change in our business.

“Because of the Black Lives Matter movement, for the very first time in our business, there is real accountability. Many CMOs and ad executives are not going to survive it,” says Byron Allen, Founder, Chairman & CEO, ALLEN MEDIA GROUP, LLC. “Our industry must have true economic inclusion, and this can start only when agency planners and the global brands they represent mandate a 2% media allocation for Black Owned Media companies across all annual planning.”

Join us for a provocative conversation on Tuesday, February 23rd at 1pm ET.

Founder, Chairman, and Chief Executive Officer
In 1993, comedian, producer, media mogul, and philanthropist Byron Allen founded his Los Angeles-based global media company, Entertainment Studios. The company has additional offices in New York, Chicago, Atlanta, and Raleigh. Allen now owns one of the largest cable network portfolios in the industry, featuring ten, 24-hour HD television networks (THE WEATHER CHANNEL, COMEDY.TV, CARS.TV, ES.TV, JUSTICECENTRAL.TV, MYDESTINATION.TV, PETS.TV, RECIPE.TV, LOCAL NOW, and THE WEATHER CHANNEL EN ESPAÑOL). The company continues to produce and distributing Emmy Award-winning and nominated shows, while also selling advertising for 43 broadcast and cable television programs. Entertainment Studios has one of the largest libraries of family and advertiser-friendly lifestyle content in the world.

Further distinguishing Entertainment Studios is its status as the first African-American owned multi-platform media studio producing and distributing wide-release motion pictures and content for all platforms. In 2015, Allen purchased Freestyle Releasing, now called Entertainment Studios Motion Pictures, a full-service theatrical movie distribution company. Entertainment Studios Motion Pictures released 2017’s highest-grossing independent movie, the shark thriller 47 METERS DOWN. In 2018, Entertainment Studios Motion Pictures released the critically-acclaimed and commercially successful Western HOSTILES and the historic mystery-thriller CHAPPAQUIDDICK. In 2019 ESMP released 47 METERS DOWN: UNCAGED, the very successful second film in the potential franchise. To date, 47MD: UNCAGED has earned nearly $47M across all distribution platforms. The digital distribution unit of Entertainment Studios Motion Pictures, Freestyle Digital Media, is a premiere multi-platform distributor with direct partnerships across all major cable, digital and streaming platforms. Capitalizing on a robust infrastructure, proven track record and a veteran sales team, Freestyle Digital Media is a true home for independent films.
Vice President of Digital Content and a Senior Correspondent
Natasha S. Alford is an award-winning journalist, digital host, and millennial media executive. As Vice President of Digital Content and a Senior Correspondent at theGrio, she leads a national team in reporting the most critical news and issues impacting the African-American community. Her work has appeared in The New York Times, The Guardian, and Oprah Mag, and she's been a guest contributor on MSNBC, The Breakfast Club, and Sirius XM.

In 2020, Natasha was selected for the Poynter Leadership Academy for Women in Media, and in 2018 was named NABJ Emerging Journalist of the Year, and Rolling Out Magazine’s “Leading Lady in Media.”

In 2017 she received the Harvard “Rising Leader” Women’s Leadership Award for her work at theGrio.

Natasha holds a master's degree in broadcast journalism from Northwestern University's Medill School of Journalism and a B.A. from Harvard University. She is the executive producer of the Pulitzer Center-sponsored documentary “Afro-Latinx Revolution: Puerto Rico,” and is producing another documentary for Entertainment Studios about the story of the Black Panthers’ Angola Three.