After organizing TEDxCrenshaw in 2015, local residents began asking Zaneta J. Smith where they could find events similar to this in the South Los Angeles area. It was then that Smith began to realize that majority of the networking and cultural events for Black professionals were often held in cities like Hollywood, Downtown Los Angeles, and Culver City.
“As I was planning TEDxCrenshaw, the individuals who attended [TED talks] loved it so much that they continued to ask for more events like [this] in South L.A. I [then realized] I was looking for that as well. [I too wanted] more events that touched on cultural, intellectual, and social aspects all in one event. I was looking for that same thing and I hadn’t found it.”
Soon, Smith began conceptualizing a place for connection, African American culture, and partnership. In 2018, she founded Kolor Society, a member-only social club for individuals of the African Diaspora between the ages of 25-45 that focuses on events South of the 10 Freeway.
According to Smith, many events are held in cities that have an abundance of upscale hotels, venue spaces, and rooftop restaurants and bars. Although some of these aspects may be absent in South L.A., Smith is out to dispel the myth that claims South L.A. is ill equipped to host prestigious events. The Kolor Society team consists of Meagan Warren the social club’s event coordinator, and Tone Hammond the club’s resident videographer.
“I wanted Kolor Society to focus on South L.A. and really capturing the dope venues that we have [by] focusing on quality events that meet social, intellectual, and cultural aspects all-in-one,” said Smith.
The Kolor Society CEO founder told the Los Angeles Sentinel that one of the unique facets about the social club is that it is member curated.
“So members decide what events they want and then we make it happen” she said.
Currently, the social club offers quarterly signature events and monthly mixers that adhere to the business and technology community through its Kolor Society & Innovative Entrepreneurs Hub.
Kolor Society’s most recent events include Black Love in Modern Times which featured an all-male panel and its Connections Business &Tech Mixer which is hosted at Mingle’s Tea Bar in Inglewood.
The next event is the SOLA/ HACK or South L.A. Hackathon which promotes “designing thinking skills to solve social problems in South L.A.”
Kolor Society Membership
The Kolor Society offers two types of memberships, annual and monthly. The annual membership is priced at $100.00 and the monthly membership is priced at $12.99. Non-members who are interested in attending Kolor Society mixers pay per event.
Individuals who become a member receive the following benefits:
Additionally Kolor Society offers a Kolor Branding Camp which Smith refers to as “an affordable solution for entrepreneurs.” This summer the Kolor Branding Camp is planning a trip to Tokyo to talk about branding for business.
Recently, Kolor Society celebrated its one year anniversary. The social club is still in search of 100 founding members.
“We are going to start having more tips, tricks, and treats for members but the campaign to our 100th founding member is important because our prices will go up after we receive our 100th founding member.
To find out more information about Kolor Society, the Kolor Branding Camp, or to become a member please visit www.kolorsociety.com.