Tracking ‘Black-Owned Brooklyn’

Glenn Alan and Cynthia Gordy, the duo behind “Black-Owned Brooklyn” on Instagram. (Photo by Paul Stremple via Bklyner)

[This story has been corrected. It had mistakenly suggested that posts on the Instagram site were paid.]

Cynthia Gordy and Glenn Alan are two Brooklyn residents who recently started Black-Owned Brooklyn, an Instagram page (and website) dedicated to curating and cataloging exemplary Black-owned businesses throughout the borough. Paul Stremple of Bklyner caught up with the duo to learn more about their project.

Many of the posts so far have been focused around Crown Heights and Bed-Stuy, which makes sense—it’s where the creators live and it’s where they know. But as the following of their Instagram grows, they’re excited to branch out to new neighborhoods and types of businesses.

Moving between restaurants and retail, plant-shops and bars, the two are conscious to keep a mix of everyday and elevated, affordable and splashy, making sure they appeal to all types of Brooklynites. One of their first posts was about Jemz, a “quiet, inconspicuous” spot they knew and loved.

As Brooklyn communities, and especially communities of color, see a major influx of new residents, supporting local businesses is a key part of keeping some sense of community, of culture.

“When I say residents, I don’t just mean black residents,” Gordy stresses. The guide is for everyone, especially those increasingly concerned about how and where they spend their money, who they support.

Go to Bklyner to read more about the pair’s “love letters” to Black-owned businesses, and to find out about the duo’s day jobs.

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