Janice Bryant Howroyd is the first Black woman to build a billion-dollar company.
Oprah Winfrey may be the first Black woman self-made billionaire, but Janice Bryant Howroyd, CEO of Act•1 Group, is the first Black woman to own a billion-dollar company. In 2011 Act•1, the nation’s largest Black female-owned business, held the No. 3 spot on the BE Industrial/Service list of the national’s largest Black-owned companies, with $1.4 billion in revenues for 2010. Over the last 30 years Bryant Howroyd has steered her Torrence, Calif., based-company through turbulent economic climates to emerge as a leader in the $120 billion staffing industry. The business titan and BE 100s CEO shared her keys to success as a featured keynote speaker at the 2012 Black Enterprise Entrepreneurs Conference + Expo (BEEC2012) in Chicago (May 23-26).