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‘I was Able to see my Father Become an Entrepreneur’: Entrepreneur Talks Growing Up In The Family Business, Leadership

After graduating from Morehouse College having studied international relations and business, tAndrew Welburn is the owner and operator of seven McDonald’s franchise stores spread across the Raleigh-Durham area of North Carolina. As the son of Craig and Diane Welburn of Welburn Management, at an early age the young Welburn knew that he wanted to be a leader and give back to his community, a goal he credits his parents’ company in assisting him achieving. 

“My father has been in the business for 36 years, and I’m 35, so I grew up in the McDonald’s business. I remember being 5 or 6 years old, and I just wanted to do anything that I could to help,” Welburn explained. 

Andrew Welburn. Photo provided by Andrew Welburn.

Welburn Management has been around since 1983 after Craig and Diane decided they wanted to pursue their own business opportunity and create their destiny. Nearly 40 years later, Welburn Management now consists of 48 family restaurants. Four of their children are franchise owners themselves, collectively supplying jobs to over 1,500 employees.

The family company scion revealed in a recent Atlanta Black Star interview that he was very determined about ensuring the continued success of the Black community in a way that would make the road to entrepreneurship one less bumpy.  

Thus the unveiling of the McDonald’s HBCU scholarship initiative with the Thurgood Marshall College Fund (TMCF). The two organizations teamed up in again 2020 to offer financial assistance to outstanding students attending one of TMCF’s 47 publicly supported Historically Black Colleges and Universities or a Predominantly Black Institution. McDonald’s and TMCF have been offering joint scholarships since 2005. Selected scholars will receive a scholarship of up to $15,000 for the 2020-2021 academic school year. 

Having been handpicked to promote the initiative, Welburn shared that his goal is to “do whatever I can to support any student that attends an HBCU, because it’s so relevant.” He continued, “I’d also like to say that student loans and student debt after college is a big deal and a disadvantage in some aspects when you compare it to someone that doesn’t have student loans. So being able to help is significant, especially with students in HBCU. This scholarship means a lot to me, and to help out one of the recipients reduce that student loan burden will significantly change their life after graduating.”

“The restaurant had always been very involved in the Black community,” Welburn said about how the group effort came about. “Namely, internally, on the corporate side as well with the recommendation of franchisees. So, it’s something that we’re really proud of and happy to be a part of.” 

Read full story at Atlanta Black Star here.

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