Hillman Grad Foundations’ Justin Riley Stresses The Importance Of Access To Capital For Black Creatives

As a personal friend to Waithe, Riley also opened up about witnessing his friend’s growth over the years.

“I’ve known Lena before she was known by the world. To watch her success firsthand has been pretty special, and more importantly, seeing her stay true to herself throughout this whole process has been special too,” he recalled. “Giving back has been in her heart since the very beginning. When I met her 10 years ago, she was always trying to find out ways to help people in her capacity then. Now, as the founder of Hillman Grad and having the success that she does, she has continued to amplify that through these mentorship programs and leveraging her own projects to introduce new voices.”

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