Meet Our Founder
Melinda Weekes Laidlow +
Melinda Weekes-Laidlow is a social change architect, master facilitator, ordained minister, and social entrepreneur. She is the Founder/CEO of Beautiful Ventures, a creative social enterprise that influences popular culture, disrupts anti-blackness and elevates perceptions of Black humanity.
Melinda is also President of Weekes In Advance Enterprises , an organizational development firm offering consulting, facilitation, coaching, and professional development services in arts and culture, social innovation, racial equity, and collaborative leadership spaces. Previously, she was the Managing Director at Race Forward: The Center for Racial Justice Innovation and Senior Consultant at the Interaction Institute for Social Change. One of her great loves is teaching. As Graduate Professor of Management at Marlboro College, Melinda teaches at the intersections of racial justice, design thinking and collaborative leadership. In 2015, leading social impact fund Echoing Green named Melinda its first-ever Social Entrepreneur in Residence.
Melinda is honored to render service to institutions that have profoundly shaped her life -- as member of the Advisory Board of Wesleyan University’s Patricelli Center for Social Entrepreneurship, the ministerial staff of the Greater Allen A.M.E. Cathedral of New York and of the Board of Directors at the Interaction Institute for Social Change. Melinda holds degrees from Wesleyan University, New York University School of Law and Harvard University Divinity School. A native New Yorker born in The Bronx, Melinda flows between the Big Apple and the Big Peach – Atlanta, GA – where she now makes home and community.