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Meet the (Black) Founders of Eat Here Indy

Were you expecting two white females?

I can’t even begin to count how many times we’ve gotten this as African American entrepreneurs, business owners, Indianapolis natives, building and operating a food media company (from the ground up), in a predominately white, media, restaurant industry/Indiana.

I jumped on here to vent. I never do this, but after yesterday (the murder of George Floyd – say his name loud and clear), I’m tired. Like physically exhausted. All of the emotions hit me, just now. And I wanted the community that we’ve spent almost 5 years building, nurturing, and catering to, to know and understand our frustration.

The injustice, the unfairness, the inequality, the unevenness that we have to endure as black men in America. The underrepresentation we have to go through in the entrepreneurial space (less than 1% of Black-owned companies receive funding), this big ball of emotion just weighed in heavy on me.

Add COVID-19 to the scenario (did we forget about COVID that fast??) and the economic effects that it’s directly had on our start-up business — we’ve been hit very hard these past several months. And we’re really starting to feel it.

Here’s something you probably didn’t know: we’ve been a faceless business (on purpose) to the general public. We’d originally made that decision back in 2015 in an effort to “protect” our brand. We wanted our audience and our customers (majority white) to value our company, not from the people who ran it, but from the product we were producing.

Realistically, if you didn’t know us personally, who knew the owners of Eat Here Indy were two black guys?

We’ve dedicated so much of our culture, passion, expertise, resilience and dollars to the Indianapolis food community, yet we consistently struggle to see the internal returns on our investments.

We appreciate the engagement aspect of what we do. We get joy and excitement by seeing so many people connected and immersed in the conversation we’re creating around food and local restaurants.

But right now, it’s pretty hard to be “normal” or act like everything is ok, when it’s not or most likely ever will be.

I felt it appropriate that you see who’s driving the content, conversation and business.

Nice to meet you, too.

41 Comments

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  1. Hi Bradley! What you and Austin are building is relevant, useful and very cool. Everything is not ok right now, but it will be eventually. Thank you for your positivity and spirit, and please, for the sake of our society, keep spreading your light.

      • Thank you for the info you provide to the Indy community. You’re right, I never really thought about who was behind this brand. But I appreciate and enjoy what you do. Keep up the good work. You’re a valuable asset to this community.

  2. Thank you so much for what has clearly been a labor of love for you! The passion you have shows in the care you take in crafting your messages – they regularly make me drool! How can I help support you?

  3. George Floyd.

    It’s a pleasure to hear from you, and I want you to know your work and your words are valued and appreciated!

    Black lives and Black-owned businesses matter.

  4. This goes to show that food has always been and always will be a method to break down barriers. I have been following you guys for years and the thought never crossed my mind that it might be 2 black men behind this great page and company. I’m so glad that it is and my respect for you both and loyalty to the page just increased tenfold. Keep on doing great things!

  5. Hi Bradley!

    I love your page and have shared it with everyone I know. I am so sorry you ever felt you needed to make eathereindy a “faceless business.” It’s a tough year for our beloved restaurants and our society needs to grow and do better, please let me know any way I can help.

      • Thank you for sharing your story. I’m so sorry you ever felt it necessary to be a “faceless business”, but now that we can recognize you as who you really are, I welcome the opportunity to love EatHereIndy *because* it is an African American-owned business! Looking forward to the days when we can all enjoy dining experiences with each other again!

  6. Keep shining– thank you for showing the faces of this amazing company! 🙂 your content and spirits are needed. Onward we all go– to unity and equity for ALL.

  7. I so appreciate your efforts of bringing people together through food!! It’s even better that you’re someone who looks like me! I am so proud! Sorry both of you couldn’t put the information out you’re African American …I’m new at this myself I own a “Grab & Go Bakery “ inside Urbana Plaza at 3827 North Mitthoefer Road Hours:12:00-6:00pm Tuesday-Saturday because of covid-19 my reopening is June 6th I wish you both all
    The best in going forward.

  8. Wow! Who knew! I love the product that you are producing! Keep doing what you’re doing, don’t get weary in well doing.

  9. Thank you for everything you do for our community !! Please continue to tell us more and educate us- we’re listening!

  10. Thank you for introducing yourself, Bradley! It’s lovely to see the faces behind these well put-together articles.

  11. Stay positive fellas! Im a huge advocate for black owned businesses and truly understand their importance to the community. We need more of them. Its a shame that many of our businesses have struggled to get PPP funds. Let me know how I can support you.

  12. What’s up homie!

    I didn’t know this Eat Here Indy platform existed. I know of only 3-4 black owned restaurants and I would try out others if I knew. Marketing and advertising could be better. I plan to drop by with the family now that Ive been enlightened!

  13. Congratulations and I plan to stop by your restaurant the next time I eat out! I have not been eating out because of Covid-19, but I will stop by Eat Here to support you!

  14. Bradley,
    Good morning. Thank you for this passionate article. I am a retired orthopaedic surgeon, I am a white person, and I want to encourage you and tell you that you are loved and appreciated.
    Do not be discouraged. You are a critical part of our future. Indy is such a better place because of you. It would be beautiful to see a loving, purposeful invasion of people who happen to be my color in restaurants owned by people who are black, with your help. I have stories I could tell you. God bless you, hope to meet you some day.

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