Backdate: July 30th, 2020
From Crisis to Clarity: Last week former New Jersey Secretary of State, Dr. DeForest B. Soaries, Jr., and the dfree® Financial Freedom hosted nearly 2,000 attendees for its first ever virtual conference to offer clarity to the multiple crises Black America has experienced over the last few months. Between COVID-19 and racial injustices, it has become evident that African Americans need real strategy and solutions to move forward as a culture, starting with financial progression.
The day kicked off with Dr. Soaries appearing on iHeartMedia’s The Breakfast Club to talk about the overall strategy and goals of dfree® and how we cannot carry on as a culture, “being woke and broke.” Celebrating its 15th anniversary this year, dfree® is the premier financial freedom movement designed specifically for African Americans that focuses on cultural, spiritual and psychological spending influences.
“Despite the fact that many are trying to pull us back, we still have opportunities and the dfree® Movement is about exposing, promoting and celebrating those opportunities,” stated Dr. Soaries in his opening address. He is the Founder and CEO of the dfree® Financial Freedom Movement.
Dr. DeForest B. Soaries, Jr.
With more than 32,000 event engagement activity of the virtual conference space in one day, attendees heard from speakers such as nationally-syndicated media personality Angela Yee, media mogul Tarik Brooks of Combs Enterprises-Revolt TV, Shane’ Harris, VP Social Responsibility & Partnerships and President of the Prudential Foundation, as well as Michellene Davis Esq., EVP & Chief Corporate Affairs Officer of RWJBarnabas Health on the collective progression of Black America.
“We can’t ‘entrepreneur’ our way out of poverty,” stated Brooks, who is second-in-command to Sean ‘Diddy’ Combs. “We need to make sure we’re thinking about how impactful we can be with our votes and our dollar!”
Tarik Brooks, Chief Operating Officer
Angela Yee stated: “If there’s anything we can take from this time, let’s figure out how we can make demands for ourselves in the future!”
Nationally-Syndicated Media Personality Angela Yee
Dr. Soaries on iHeartMedia’s The Breakfast Club
“Systemic issues require systemic solutions,” said Shane’ Harris, VP Social Responsibility & Partnerships and President of the Prudential Foundation who spoke on the company’s stance on the state of Black America. Prudential Financial was the Title Sponsor of the event.
VP Social Responsibility & Partnerships and President of the Prudential Foundation
“Everything we’re going through takes a toll on us but I am not tired yet,” stated EVP & Chief Corporate Affairs Officer of RWJBarnabas Health Michellene Davis Esq. “However, I am concerned for individuals who don’t feel empowered enough to be able to stand in a room of injustice.” RWJBarnabas Health was the Platinum Sponsor of the event.
Michellene Davis, Esq.
EVP & Chief Corporate Affairs Officer of RWJBarnabas Health
Attendees also got the opportunity to hear from representatives from all Divine 9 Greek organizations. The major takeaway was unification of the organizations to make bigger strides in our communities as it relates to financial wellness and progression for the culture as a whole.
Other features of the virtual conference included a testimonial panel of community leaders who have led the dfree® strategy within their respective areas, a pastors’ panel to discuss the role of the church as it relates to civil rights issues, virtual networking amongst attendees, and an expo room of dfree® partners including Prudential Financial, RWJBarnabas Health, National Association of Real Estate Brokers, and more!
“Thank you for hosting and bringing this conference to us. Though delivered online it was delivered seamlessly. Lots of great content and looking forward to being part of this discussion.” – Conference Attendee
“This is a powerful and dynamic conference. Thank you Pastor Soaries, Prudential, guest speakers and everyone who made this possible. To God Be the Glory!” – Conference Attendee
Through training, content, curriculum, tools and resources, dfree® offers solid strategy on how to become debt free and provides the blueprint to build legacy and secure a positive financial future. Attendees left the dfree® From Crisis to Clarity Virtual Conference with solid steps on how to either start or continue their journeys to financial freedom. On August 19-21, 2020, the organization will host free training for community groups and churches interested in launching dfree®.
dfree® also offers its free Billion Dollar Challenge as a tangible first step in getting finances under control. The Billion Dollar Challenge is a fun, easy-to-use, confidential money management tool. Through this tool alone, dfree® has aided more than 10,000 individuals in paying down more than $25 million of consumer debt with the goal being to transfer those funds to build savings, investments and insurance to truly obtain generational wealth and close the racial wealth gap.
Another solid tool for attendees to continue their strides toward financial wellness is the dfree® Academy, a free online version of the dfree® curriculum. To date, more than 7,000 people have taken the dfree® Academy which has resulted in true life transformation.
To learn more about the dfree® Financial Freedom Movement and its strategies, please visit mydfree.org.