Mother and Daughter Launch First Black-Owned Business in Downtown Disney
It’s no secret that historically Black businesses have gotten the short end of the stick.
So it’s a big deal that Juana Williams and her daughter Blair Paysinger recently became the first Black business owners in the Downtown Disney District in Anaheim, Calif. They’re the co-founders of Post 21.
The mother-daughter duo behind this idea wanted to create a marketplace that focuses on fashion, decorum art, jewelry and beauty products made by other Black businesses.
These ladies have discovered a completely untapped consumer market that could help propel the next generation of Black entrepreneurs.
Williams said she would love nothing more than to see Black businesses excel. She spent her whole life surrounded by Black entrepreneurs, so they’re a priority for Williams and her daughter.
“Our whole purpose is to advance Black businesses,” Williams said in an interview with The OC Register. “We’re bringing all the Black businesses that we work with along with us so they have the Disney opportunity as well.”
Williams is from the Jefferson Park area of Los Angeles, where she worked in her father’s stores surrounded by anything from pediatricians, dentists, accountants, lawyers and bankers.
“My father owned three businesses on one block in Los Angeles — a corner market, a laundromat, and a gas station,” she said. “He started his own business and then he helped all of his brothers do the same thing so that they all could be financially stable.”
Post 21 also represents the innovative entrepreneurs of Black Wall Street and looks to further its legacy. Williams and Paysinger duo strategically opened their online store on June 1, 2020, exactly 99 years after the tragic bombing of Black Wall Street.
A year later, Post 21 opened a kiosk directly across from the World of Disney shop on Black Friday. It reopened at the beginning of the month.
According to Property Manager Robbery Clunie, Downtown Disney has been working to display businesses with diverse ownership, management, products and suppliers. This initiative is meant to encourage shoppers to see themselves represented in the products and services of the famous promenade.
“We are highlighting the importance of diversity in the offerings in a lot of ways,” Clunie said. “What we’re trying to do is make sure that products and services that we present are as diverse as possible.”