CEO Donald Hawkins Founded First Boulevard To Change The Way Black Americans Bank
Photo Credit: Donald Hawkins/FIrst Boulevard

CEO Donald Hawkins Founded First Boulevard To Change The Way Black Americans Bank

Neobank First Boulevard is not only for the culture, but it’s by the culture.

Not to be confused with a traditional bank, First Boulevard is a fully inclusive financial services company that not only believes that banking should be inclusive, but has a plan in place to help Black America build generational wealth, control spending, and receive paychecks up to two days early.

“Through representation, our goal is to show others that the solutions we need can be effectively developed within our own communities,” said First Boulevard Founder and CEO, Donald Hawkins in an exclusive interview with AfroTech. “Our company looks like the market we serve and as a result, we have an unfair advantage when it comes to building products that Black America needs. Our diversity is our intellectual property and our members are the driving force behind what we do.”

As an institution dedicated to the betterment of the community, it was only right that the neobank’s beta launch took place during Juneteenth.

“We’ve been very thoughtful about the pace we’re building at,” Hawkins continued. “The need for our Black-focused solution in the financial industry is long overdue. Juneteenth is a day of celebration. It’s a day that our community owns. Juneteenth is a very unapologetic holiday that mimics First Boulevard’s mentality of building for the culture, by the culture. Each year our company celebrates another year in business, it brings a smile to my face knowing that we’ll constantly be reminded why we do what we do.”

The bank was founded in 2020 when Hawkins wanted to take a stance following the murder of George Floyd coupled with the effects that the nation, specifically Black people, were facing from the COVID-19 pandemic.

The neobank — who raised $5 million in funding in February —  also prides itself on offering early direct deposit, cash back for buying Black, and transparent banking with no hidden fees, and more.

Photo Credit: First Boulevard

Today, key investors of the institution include Gabrielle Union, Jamere Jackson, and the only Black-owned bank in Texas, Unity National Bank.

Click here for early access to First Boulevard’s exclusive app set to launch August 2021 on the Apple App Store.