• About the Black Footwear Forum

    The Black Footwear Forum invites footwear industry professionals and supporters to share stories and ideas and to create a dialog around the influence, leadership, and passion provided by blacks in the global footwear industry. This forum encourages collaboration to establish industry goals in the development of black talent at all levels.


    Surrounding the Forum are regional and national events that provide connecting conversations for black footwear professional brands to share concerns and solutions to help shape the conversation while bridging the gaps across the industry.

  • Black Footwear Forum Sponsors

  • Upcoming Events

    Upcoming events will be posted here as they are scheduled. Interested in partnering with the Black Footwear Forum? Please contact us.

  • Become a Member of the Black Footwear Forum

    Join our email list to become a member of the Black Footwear Forum. Receive emails about events, news highlights, accessing resources, staying involved, initiatives, and more. View the latest Black Footwear Forum Quarterly Newsletter.

  • Media

    News relevant to Black Footwear Professionals

    2022 Black Footwear Forum Announces Agenda and more

    The Black Footwear Forum (BFF) announced featured speakers and panels for this year's event, to be held at Pensole Lewis College of Business & Design (PLC) in Detroit, September 16-18, in partnership with the Footwear Distributors and Retailers of America (FDRA)… read more

    The Athlete's Foot Announces Creation of Impact Council

    The specialty footwear and lifestyle chain, The Athlete's Foot (TAF) announces the inception of its Impact Council which was created to empower local communities through a variety of initiatives, enrichment, and outreach programs. read more

    Black Footwear Forum in Focus​ – Shoe-in Show

    Sabria and Matt preview all the exciting changes taking place at the Black Footwear Forum in 2022, from the establishment of an experienced Advisory Committee to the regional meet-ups in Boston, Atlanta, New York, Columbus, and Portland to the national event in Detroit. You won’t want to miss this! listen now

    AAFF Reimagined as Black Footwear Forum, Advisors

    The Footwear Distributors and Retailers of America (FDRA) and PENSOLE Lewis College of Business & Design, cofounders of the African American Footwear Forum (AAFF), have announced the rebranding of the AAFF to the Black Footwear Forum (BFF)… read more

    Diversity & Inclusion Workshop with Amber Cabral

    Our encounters and interactions with others are full of small behaviors that send messages to others, but are they the messages we mean to send? In this session we will talk about the difference between equity and equality, the role of privilege in how we see the world, and how we message equity to others in small behaviors called microaggressions. watch now

  • Black Footwear Forum Advisory Committee

    Providing invaluable guidance and expertise for the Black Footwear Forum organization

    Brandis Russell


    Dr. D’Wayne Edwards

    PENSOLE Lewis College of Business & Design

    Portia Blunt


    David Ballin


    LaShae Boone-McCray

    RG Barry Brands



    Founder, True to Size Agency

    Kris Wright


    Darla Pires DeGrace

    DeGrace Group Consulting

    Dace Graham


    Chris Dixon


    Sabria Butler


  • About FDRA + Pensole Lewis College

    FDRA provides clarity and insights for decision making, efficiency, and productivity for footwear professionals. We develop essential products and innovative solutions to boost the bottom line for our members across the industry, from footwear design to retail. We fight to support footwear jobs and shoe consumers in Washington, DC and around the globe. Find more in-depth information and examples of how we drive value to our members every day. Considering membership? Contact us.

    Pensole Lewis College offers a new path to break into the world of product creation, preparing a talented pool of designers to enter the industry. We strive to make a better pathway for this generation, leaving our industry better than when we entered it. Our programs teach students through an intensive curriculum comprised of a step-by-step session plan including inspiration, concept development, problem solving, prototyping, marketing, networking skills, and portfolio development. Learn more about PLC.