It did not make sense to her that a company would set up a call center in the nearly desolate former Red Bird Mall (now Southwest Center Mall), and employ 500 residents from the community.
Pride, who was hired by the company, is one of several that crystalize the ideals of Chime Solutions, a Black-owned company that provides outsourcing services for small businesses as well as some Fortune 500 companies.
It is the brainchild of president and CEO Mark Wilson, who has more than 25 years of success in business information and call center services.
“Our primary focus is to address the issue of economic mobility, creating opportunities in underresourced communities,” Wilson said.
To achieve that, Wilson set a goal of creating 10,000 jobs across 10 cities — all in communities with a significant Black population.
Chime employs 1,500 people there, an overwhelming number of them Black and most from Clayton County, where the company had been expected to generate about $87 million in sales per year in 2016.The site also creates another 300 indirect jobs and benefits neighboring businesses, too, according to a University of Georgia economist who analyzed Chime’s economic impact for The Atlanta Mall was going to fail,” Omar Hawk, Chime’s vice president of operations in Georgia, said.
Shelly Wilson is a microbiologist-turned Chime COO as well as Mark Wilson’s wife.
With Chime, their goal is to bring jobs to Black communities.
He said a predominant number of Chime workers are single mothers who have been devastated by job losses during the COVID-19 economic crush.
The model is the same in Dallas and Charlotte, North Carolina, where Wilson recently employed 250 workers in an underserved community, with plans for more hires.
Five other cities will be added over time, with the goal of 1,000 jobs created per city for those living in underserved communities.
“We’re doing business as a Black-owned company, creating jobs for Blacks.
Hawk began working with Wilson as a customer service representative with RYLA after graduating from Morehouse College in 2001.Looking to the future, Wilson, a graduate of Wilberforce University in Ohio, the nation’s oldest private historically Black college, set up a co-op program at his alma mater, the Emerging Leaders Chime Solutions Co-Op Experience.
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