Black people deserve more seats at the table in tech, and Sean Mendy is on a mission to make it possible!

Sean Mendy is the co-founding partner of Concrete Rose, a company that invests financial and social capital into groundbreaking ventures led by underrepresented founders of color. They are also committed to founders who have demonstrated a solid commitment to creating inclusive cultures and building out diverse teams.

Mendy’s journey is often unheard of as he grew up in Silicon Valley and is now taking his knowledge to help equip Black people with more access to positions in the tech space.

The Inspiration

“It’s more complicated than just what I was doing right before launching the fund,” Mendy shared when asked how he found his way into the venture capital (VC) space. 

For Mendy, one of his personal heroes was Magic Johnson, not for what he was doing in sports, but his work as an entrepreneur

“Magic Johnson was my hero less for what was happening on the court and more for what he was doing in terms of changing communities by building businesses,” Mendy told AfroTech. “So, I planned on doing the same thing right out of college. I founded a company myself that was a tech-enabled diversity recruiting platform that had some marginal success with raising money and some marginal success with users who were getting jobs or getting laid off before they even started.”

Making A Difference In The Valley

Mendy grew up watching families around him do things that were literally changing the world. This was the norm for him in Silicon Valley, but he knew that a lot of people outside of that space didn’t have access to this stuff and wanted to make a difference.

He began to work alongside people to build funds for underserved communities and began to get an understanding of how to provide more opportunities to others who looked like him.

“It was kind of this hack into understanding who in Silicon Valley truly cares about the opportunity gap,” he said. “Who wants to make sure that Silicon Valley is a place that is a true meritocracy and where it doesn’t matter what family you’re born into, you’re going to get a shot at getting an education and doing what needs to be done to be able to access those opportunities in Silicon Valley.”

Listen Up

To hear more from Sean Mendy on how growing up in Silicon Valley shaped his worldview and the work that he’s doing to get more Black professionals hired at startups, check out the full Black Tech Green Money episode below.