The national organization 100 Black Men was founded in 1963 when 100 Black men in New York City created a leadership alliance to ensure the quality of life in their communities. Chapters emerged in more cities, including Indianapolis in 1984. In 1986, representatives from around the country established the national organization, 100 Black Men of America, Inc., which emerged in 1986, has over 110 chapters and 10,000 members worldwide.
The founders of the Indianapolis chapter envisioned mentoring as the vehicle to move youth out of poverty in hopes that they would become civic leaders. 100 Black Men became a youth development organization that promoted personal and academic success in African American youth in Indianapolis through mentoring-based educational programs.
Members exemplify the organization’s motto, “What They See is What They’ll Be,” by volunteering as role models and mentors for youth involved in the programs. 100 Black Men of Indianapolis sponsors the 100 Summer Academy, a 6-week educational program for students in K-8th grade that provides academic classes and recreational and creative activities to decrease knowledge loss over the summer.
It also sponsors the Team Mentoring Program, an 18-week program that connects a team of mentors with 5th–8th grade boys in the Indianapolis Public School system. Team Mentoring focuses on personal development, academic growth, and life skills. In addition, 100 Black Men sponsors a variety of other programs including the Beautillion Militaire Scholarship Program, the Robotics Program, the Dollars and $ense Financial Literacy Program, the Collegiate 100, and the College Connections college and scholarship fair.
Since its founding, the organization has mentored thousands of students, provided more than $1 million in scholarships, and devoted thousands of volunteer hours to students. 100 Black Men employs one full-time staff member, the executive director. Annual revenue of approximately $900,000 comes from grants and private donations.