A’lelia Bundles discusses Madam C. J. Walker’s Legacy

How often can you talk to a legend? I mean a true legend, with American history dating all the way back to the 1900’s.

Kamara Daughtry, creator of LookWeAreIncluded.com and A’Lelia Bundles, former network producer and great-great granddaughter of Madam CJ Walker discussed Bundles rich family history, the Netflix movie ‘Self Made’ and more.

Bundles originally from Indianapolis had a 30-year career as an executive and Emmy award winning producer with ABC News and NBC News, she now is brand historian for MCJW, a line of hair care products inspired by Madam Walker and created by Sundial Brands. She is a trustee of Columbia University and chair emerita of the National Archives Foundation.

Ms. Bundles also speaks at conferences, colleges, corporations and other venues about entrepreneurship, philanthropy, financial literacy and women’s and African American history, according to her biography.

In the YouTube interview, Bundles discussed how she attended Colombia University’s School of Journalism for graduate school and her advisor (noted: the only black woman on the faculty) asked what she’ll be writing about for her upcoming paper. Once her advisor realized she was related to Madam CJ Walker, the first female self-made millionaire in America she told Bundles her graduate paper will be conducted on her family history.

Just a little history: Madam CJ Walker created hair products for African-American women and promoted her products by traveling all over the world. Her marketing strategy was top notch, Bundles discussed in the interview how Madam CJ Walker really focused on the quality of products especially during a time period where resources and opportunities were scarce for Black people.

According to her website, by early 1910, Madam CJ Walker had settled in Indianapolis, then the nation’s largest inland manufacturing center, where she built a factory, hair and manicure salon and another training school. Less than a year after her arrival, Walker grabbed national headlines in the black press when she contributed $1,000 to the building fund of the “colored” YMCA in Indianapolis. In addition to her being a wealthy entrepreneur she was also a philanthropist.

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