Welcome to our new feature #CLPSpotlights, our monthly series highlighting individuals and organizations that make a difference in their community. This month, we interviewed Kyley Coleman from Black Owned PGH promotes Black-owned businesses in the interest of economic equity.
Q: What is your favorite part of what you do?
A: My favorite part would have to be watching the growth of Black businesses in Pittsburgh and being a part of that journey. I meet so many creative, driven, supportive people along the way that inspire me to continue my work at Black Owned PGH.
Q: How did you come to work for Black Owned PGH?
A: I started Black Owned PGH in May of 2020. There was a spike in protests after the deaths of George Floyd and Breonna Taylor. I wanted to build an innovative, long-lasting way to combat racism. Black businesses automatically came to mind because money is one of the most powerful aspects in the world, whether we like it or not. I thought if people would spend their money consciously, we could make a big difference — starting with Pittsburgh. I wanted to create a page that could be used as a resource when finding local Black businesses.
Q: Tell us your favorite story about the library!
A: One time a few summers ago, a woman I knew was hosting an audition for the fashion show at the East Liberty location. I remember feeling super nervous to go but also wanting to try something new. I went and ended up having so much fun and connecting with so many other creatives, models and fashion designers. We still keep in touch here and there! The library, for me, holds memories from when I met new friends.
Q: Who is your favorite author or artist at the moment?
A: My favorite author is R. H. Sin. I owned almost all of his books, and they really helped me on my journey of self-confidence and self-love, so the books will always be very special to me and a daily reminder to be strong and kind.
Q: What was an especially fulfilling moment for you in your work?
A: An especially fulfilling moment was receiving one of the Pittsburgh People of the Year awards and placed on the front cover. It’s an indescribable, joyous feeling to know I am making an impact in Pittsburgh and there are so many people that support me.
Q: What is a favorite local business or organization of yours?
A: My favorite business would have to be @livefreshjuicery. The owners are super kind and welcoming, and the smoothies are always super fresh! I know they will always have some of the best produce, especially in their juices.
Thanks for reading! And thanks again to Kyley Coleman from Black Owned PGH. Check back next month for a new Community Spotlight!