Phone Number


Posted Statement on U.S. Supreme Court Affirmative Action Ruling


Last week’s Supreme Court ruling on affirmative action was detrimental to the progress in making our nation’s higher learning institutions inclusive and diverse via college admissions. Unfortunately the _Students for Fair Admissions v. Harvard_ landmark decision was just as historic as past rulings that led to our societal norm of establishing initiatives to address fairness and equality in the first place. The Supreme Court is requiring that the lens of race must discontinue amid current systems of bias and racial inequity. For decades, opponents of justice and equality have been permitted to have a license to exclude people of color from full participation in education, finance, healthcare, housing, transportation, and economics and other areas of life. The Supreme Court’s ruling has renewed that license seemingly in education, but also in areas such as finance and economics that benefit from the shaping and preparation of minds who are both talented and diverse. As a racial equity focused certified Community Development Financial Institution guided by racial equity lending values, systems and processes, and as an entity led by professionals of color, Rende Progress Capital has an interest in any judicial ruling that restricts or removes tools to promote or protect equity and opportunity. The first concern is the ruling’s effect on colleges and universities in terms of reductions of students of color----immediate effects after harmful actions to end affirmative action in our state of Michigan. The second concern is that the Court’s ruling perpetuates a myth that campuses and classrooms are populated by racialized ‘others’ who are unqualified. The third concern is the harm which grows in our body politic when initiatives promoting equity and opportunity are cast in the language of a ‘zero-sum’ game of winners and losers as opposed to the value that true inclusion benefits all of America. This concern is not lessened simply because opposition to inclusion is communicated in erudite and judicial language. Therefore, the final concern from the Court’s ruling is one that all allies of equity and inclusion should be attentive to: That the Court’s clarion call should be an instruction to the nation to dismiss the realities and data of inequity, and that society should abandon equity and inclusion tools to make our country a more perfect union. It is not far-fetched that a domino effect could lead to the reduction or abandonment of equity and inclusion programs by public or private institutions [companies, organizations, etc.] in a variety of fields. In addition to the unfortunate perfect storm of attacks on diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) initiatives, such a court ruling can lead to individuals and institutions to end their journey towards fairness, justice, opportunity, and equality. There are four ways to arrive at racial equity and opportunity ---education, homeownership, public policy and entrepreneurship. RPC knows the opportunity and challenge in the work of the latter---work that does not need additional barriers or obstacles. Commitments renewed in the face of opposing equity are necessary at this time as it has been in the past. In the face of the Supreme Court decision that loudly promoted a message to the nation to discontinue efforts to arrive at racial equity and opportunity, RPC hopes that all stakeholders continue and strengthen their work, resources, tools, and efforts in the journey towards equity, inclusion, and opportunity. **Eric K. Foster Co-founder, Chair and Managing Director Rende Progress Capital Cuong Q. Huynh Co-founder and General Manager Rende Progress Capital**