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About The Academy

The Catalyst Black Academy is a California 501c(3) Nonprofit based in San Diego. The purpose and mission of this organization is to advance the African American community in business ownership through structured programming and mentorship. 

The Catalyst Black Academy was formed from the brainchild of Executive Director, Michael Cox who started it initially as a program administered through his publication Black SD Magazine. The program was created to assist with creating more African American business owners by focusing on the early entrepreneurial and start up stages. The reason being that through surveying from the program it was found that African American entrepreneurs and early start ups lacked the basic business acumen in the areas of 

Business development, 

Business economics,

Organizational structure &

Strategy in sales & marketing


After 1 year of the program’s design and inception the Academy was formed so that we could expand our operations to give the community more tools, resources, and structure by establishing a dedicated team and board of directors to help create deeper bonds, extend mentorship and offer more networking opportunities.


Beyond the Entrepreneur program we have now offered a booster style service to help small African American businesses who need assistance in the form of advanced business help in the areas of marketing, sales, finance, branding, and more. It is our goal to help the African American entrepreneur and small business community during the early stages of operation so that they can be successful and sustainable.

The Catalyst Black Program has gained a Special Commendation from Councilmember Chris Ward of District 3. It has received a Proclamation from County Supervisor Nathan Fletcher.

Michael Cox

Executive Director & President

Anthony Perry

Director of Veteran Outreach & Board Member

Delwayne Stepney

Administrative Director &

Board Member

Courtney Henderson

Board Member

Owner of Hendo Studios

Maya Madsen

Board Member

Owner of Maya's Cookies

Brandi Daniels

Board Member 

Owner of Passion Fruit Marketing