Chancellor’s Speaker Series at N.C. A&T to Feature Producer, Actress, Writer Issa Rae: “Standin’ On Business”


EAST GREENSBORO, N.C. (Jan. 16, 2024) – As students are welcomed to campus for the first day of the spring 2024 semester, North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University is excited to announce the next installment of the Harold L. Martin Sr. Chancellor’s Speaker Series, “Standin’ on Business,” featuring CEO, producer, actress and writer Issa Rae along with alumna Toya Bynum ‘05 as moderator. The event will take place Wednesday, Feb. 21, at 6 p.m., in Corbett Sports Center.

Focusing on entrepreneurship and development, the “Standin’ on Business” conversation will provide a tremendous opportunity for students and all attendees to gain insight and tools toward their enterprising goals. Simply put, to “stand on business,” means to follow through and fulfill an obligation, responsibility or duty similar to “taking care of business.”

Featured speaker Issa Rae has shown herself to not only be “Standin’ on Business,” but she is methodically establishing herself and innovating in an authentic, bold, new lane of creativity in the entertainment industry and well beyond.  

With her own unique flare and infectious sense of humor, Rae first garnered attention for her award-winning web series and the accompanying New York Times bestseller, “The Misadventures of Awkward Black Girl.” She then went on to create and star in the Peabody Award-winning HBO show, “Insecure,” for which she garnered multiple Emmy® and two Golden Globe® nominations. Rae has also made her mark on the big screen, starring in “The Photograph” and “The Lovebirds.”

In 2020, Rae formed HOORAE, a multifaceted media company that develops content across mediums in an effort to continue to break boundaries in storytelling and representation, which includes HOORAE Media for film, TV and digital; Raedio, the music label, music supervision company and “audio everywhere” company; and ColorCreative, its management division. Via a connected deal, Rae has also expanded her executive producer slate with the Emmy Award nominated “A Black Lady Sketch Show” and the series, “Rap SH*T.”

Rae maintains a commitment to South Los Angeles personally and professionally. After planting roots near her childhood home, she set up the HOORAE headquarters in the heart of South LA. Her participation in the nonprofit organization Destination Crenshaw furthers her mission of celebrating Black Angelenos and her ownership in Hilltop Cafe + Kitchen provides much-needed jobs and opportunities for local residents. Additionally, as co-owner of the Black-owned and operated hair care line, Sienna Naturals, Rae continues to reimagine Black wellness and beauty.

As moderator, Bynum will certainly add inspiration and insight to the conversation. She maintains over two decades of corporate business experience including Harley-Davidson Motor Company, Target Corporation and now Frito-Lay snacks at PepsiCo.

In her role as the culture cultivator for PepsiCo’s Mosaic ERG National Board (and recently snagging a global award for her outstanding leadership), Bynum wears many hats extending beyond the corporate sector to board membership (including member of the year) for Big Brothers Big Sisters Collin County, spreading Aggie Pride as the president of the North Carolina A&T State University Dallas/Ft. Worth Alumni Chapter, and juggling titles as chairman and board president for The HBCU Project. In 2023, she was honored with the North Carolina A&T State University Dr. Velma Speight Young Alumna Award.

The Chancellor’s Speaker Series at A&T provides a platform to address and discuss issues of complexity and matters of importance within society, bringing nationally distinguished guests to campus for dialogue and engagement. The series is part of the university’s commitment to creating an intellectual climate that encourages the creative exchange of ideas.

The speaker series is free and open to the public. Tickets will be available on a first come, first served basis at the University Ticket Office (Brown Hall), beginning Monday, Feb. 12.   

Members of the media should contact Jackie Torok, university director of media relations via email at jtorok@ncat.edu.



Media Contact Information: jtorok@ncat.edu

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