Serena Williams Donates $1M To HBCU Student Pitch Competition Winner

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Serena Williams made a million-dollar investment over the weekend, donating the prize money to one lucky HBCU student pitch competition winner.

The tennis G.O.A.T. partnered with Michael B. Jordan to donate $1 million during the inaugural Legacy QQQ HBCU basketball tournament in Newark, New Jersey on Saturday (December 18). The tournament also included a startup pitch competition where student entrepreneurs competed for the grand prize.

TracFlo –– a financial app designed to help construction workers manage project risk with contractors –– won the competition.

“We see a lot of venture companies investing in a lot of people, but it’s really about following people of color and women and giving them the same opportunities,” Williams said during the live broadcast on TNT.

Serena’s older sister Isha Price and niece are both Howard University alumnae. With that connection and the Grand Slam history-maker’s very own venture firm, Serena Ventures, this donation seems to fit right in with her off-the-court passions.

“Ventures is one thing I’m incredibly passionate about. I learned that less than 2 percent of women in 2020 were getting funding and then 1.2% of people of color were getting money from VC founders –– and we’re talking tons of money are all going to one type of individual.

“So, it’s not a requirement for you to be a woman or person of color, but the team that we’ve hired –– our whole team we just look at people a different way,” she said.

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