United Street Tours

[Part 4] Getting a seat at the table

[Part 4] Getting a seat at the table

Chakita Patterson, Founder of United Street Tours with Ashford Hughes, Chief Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Officer for the Mayor’s Office

 

I never saw myself as an entrepreneur. I went to school for 6 years and came out with a Master’s in Social Work degree. However, I realize that the very essence of social work is to:

1) Identify a need or gap in the community.

2) Create and implement a solution to alleviate it.

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After graduation, the education system quickly became my community, and its challenges became mine to alleviate. When I learned that black history was seldom covered in schools, I became frustrated. And United Street Tours was birthed. Leading United Street Tours has taught me how to put myself in a position to gain a seat at the table.

Securing a seat

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I learned to not only run a business but to use my business to advocate for the community. Through advocacy, I was invited to meet with the Mayor and his team to discuss the state of black-owned businesses in Nashville. During this first meeting, we discussed needs, gaps, opportunities, and solutions for minority business owners. This meeting served as an opportunity to build relationships, friendships, and identify allies.

One relationship that I treasure most is with Ashford Hughes Sr., Chief Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Officer at the Mayor’s Office. I admire his work and that he is a champion for equity. I’m honored and humbled to advocate alongside such a brilliant mind.

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How I Became One Of The Youngest Historical Commissioners

[Part 1]  Taking advantage of ‘hot seat opportunities’

[Part 2] Addressing racial ignorance by turning adversity into opportunity

[Part 3] Overcoming imposter syndrome

[Part 4] Getting a seat at the table

[Part 5] Becoming a board member for leading organizations

[Part 6] Creating award-winning Nashville tours

[Part 7] Interviewing with Nashville council members

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