Aurora James Has One Ask: ‘Open the Door for Other People’

In 2020, as millions of people protested for racial justice across the country, Brother Vellies founder Aurora James challenged major retailers to do more than offer empty statements of support. “So many of your businesses are built on Black spending power,” she wrote in an Instagram post that quickly went viral. “So many of your stores are set up in Black communities.”

Her ask: Create lasting change by dedicating 15% of shelf space to Black-owned brands. Ten days later Sephora became the first major corporation to commit. The Fifteen Percent Pledge is now one of the fastest-growing nonprofits in America, and James has completely reshaped an entire industry.


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