Business leader Ossie Kendrix has been named the president and CEO of the African American Chamber of Commerce of Wisconsin (AACCW), the board of directors has announced. His new role with AACCW will begin on May 1.
Kendrix succeeds Dr. Eve Hall, who leads the Milwaukee Urban League. This appointment highlights the increasing importance of continuing to grow the organization and promoting the interests of local diverse businesses.
“Ossie’s vision and passion for economic development, along with a wealth of experience in nonprofit leadership, small business development and advocacy, make him an ideal leader to continue the work that has been started. We look forward to working in concert with his vision for the growth of the organization,” said Clifton Phelps, AACCW board chairman.
Most recently, Kendrix was the deputy state director for U.S. Sen. Tammy Baldwin. He was also vice president of Feeding America Eastern Wisconsin, manager of the Office of Small Business Development at the City of Milwaukee, and program consultant with the Milwaukee Urban Entrepreneur Partnership.
“I am honored to join the AACCW,” said Kendrix. “The work of the chamber is critical to the community and I look forward to working with the board, membership, and staff to continue to promote greater unity and ensure the sustainability of local diverse businesses.”
As a minority small business champion of the U.S. Small Business Administration – Wisconsin District Office, Kendrix brings more than 15 years of experience working in government and nonprofit organizations. His educational and professional experiences in government allows Kendrix a unique opportunity to serve as a strong voice for the AACCW’s membership, advocating for legislation that promotes small business growth and policies that address the challenges faced by diverse business owners.
A native of Milwaukee, Kendrix earned a bachelor’s degree in sociology and communication from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee and a master’s degree in public administration from Drake University. He is a 2015 graduate of Cardinal Stritch University’s African American Leadership Program and was presented with an Award of Excellence from the Wisconsin Minority Supplier Diversity Council in 2012.
AACCW supports the growth and sustainability of African American owned businesses through access to capital, advocacy, business development, and strategic partnerships and promotes economic and educational vibrancy in communities of color.