Community Heroes: an in-depth series on the lives and impact of people giving back to our global communities.
Kevin Powell, Activist, Public Speaker & President of BK Nation
Base Of Operations: Brooklyn, N.Y.
Why he is a Community Hero: Mr. Powell has been a champion of the people as an activist since 18 years of age, and continues to empower others via his new organization, BK Nation.
Kevin Powell may be known to an older generation as a former star of MTV’s reality show The Real World: New York, but the activist, writer and public speaker has gone on to achieve much more. As one of the most outspoken public figures of his time, Powell uses his platform to galvanize people under positive common causes. With his new organization, BK Nation, Powell hopes to add on to the fabric of the world in a positive fashion.
Serving as the president and co-founder of BK Nation, the organization was born after Powell’s city congressional campaign bids in 2008 and 2010. In Brooklyn, where he ran, Powell made mention in the Community Heroes chat that if the borough were its own city, it’d be the fourth largest in the country. Realizing that the community was so diverse and the needs were many, he began reaching out to local leaders to make connections.
“We need to create a clearinghouse of information, resources and services,” explained Powell. “This is the 21st Century, people aren’t not gonna look in the Yellow Pages. What we have found is that a lot of folks, even with Google, are not gonna necessarily google.”
Powell added, “And so we have five different projects in each chapter around the county: an Education project, a Leadership and Civic Engagement project, an Art and Culture project, a Jobs and Small Businesses project, and we also have a Health and Wellness project.”
BK Nation’s focus is nationwide, and the site will have blog entries and job postings for all 50 states in due time. Essentially, Powell envisions BK Nation as a one-stop hub for information, connection, engagement and community involvement.
“Movements just don’t happen if you don’t build them,” said Powell. “We’re not saying BK Nation is the answer, but we want to be a part of the answer, and we feel like part of the answer is you can’t just keep talking about what’s needed in your community. You actually have to create it with basic solutions and action steps.”
With their motto, “The Leadership Is Us,” Powell and the BK Nation certainly appear to be on the correct path.
To learn more about BK Nation, click here.