Education: Johnson C. Smith University
Professional Experience: An early opportunity with the Carolinas Minority Supplier Development Council turned into a ten-year career for Council Member Graham. His career then took him through Bank of America and Time Warner Cable boardrooms. The experiences of these roles prompted him to launch the Center for Supplier Diversity, a research firm that provides assessments and solutions to major corporations seeking to do business with small business owners. At one point, he returned to his alma mater where he assembled a multi-sector task force that partnered to give the Historic West End its first facelift in nearly 40 years. In 2020, he became the executive director for Beds for Kids, a Charlotte-area nonprofit that provides beds and essential furniture to children and families in need.
Civic Engagement: From 2004-2014, Graham served in the North Carolina Senate, representing District 40, which covers Mecklenburg County, where he championed funds to build out the city’s light rail and legislation to tackle the rise of neighborhood gangs. After the loss of his sister, Cynthia Graham Hurd, in the June 2015 national tragedy at Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church in Charleston, he responded by traveling the country speaking to communities about overcoming hatred. Along with his siblings, he founded the Cynthia Graham Hurd Center for Literacy and Civic Engagement to honor his sister, with the goal to advocate for the expansion of literacy and civic engagement through programming and events. To further honor Cynthia — who was his first tennis coach — Graham began the Charlotte Amateur Tennis Tournament, a passion project that raises funds to continue the Foundation’s mission.
Key Achievements: In his first stint on City Council, Graham helped to revitalize inner city communities and led the efforts to relocate the Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association tournament to Charlotte.
Council Committee Assignments: Transportation, Planning and Development; Jobs and Economic Development
Platform and Goals: Council Member Graham works closely with constituents and the community on key issues and priorities including community development and revitalization, public safety and police reform, affordable housing, and racial justice.
Awards and Recognitions: 2022 QCity Metro Great 28 Award, 2022 Charlotte Business Journal Top 100 Power Leaders