Kawanna Brown

Company: Magic Johnson Enterprises

Position: Chief Operating Officer

Industry: Restaurants & Cafes, Leisure

Country: United States

Kawanna Brown is Chief Operating Officer of Magic Johnson Enterprises, the umbrella organization for all Magic Johnson-related businesses. As such, she is responsible for operational and strategic leadership of the organization, business development, negotiations, licensing, endorsements and asset acquisitions.

Mrs. Brown has been instrumental in growing Magic Johnson Enterprises (MJE); one of the best known African-American owned and operated brands in America. Under her leadership, the company’s portfolio has expanded tremendously. As Starbucks only joint venture partner, MJE has opened more than a hundred stores across the country (with a commitment to open a total of 125). The company’s real estate development fund, Canyon-Johnson Urban Fund, is the country’s largest private real estate fund focused on the revitalization of underserved communities. Additional partnerships with select corporations help to bring quality and convenience to urban America—with thirteen 24 Hour Fitness Magic Sport centers in our portfolio, we continue to rank among the highest number of memberships for the chain. MJE continues to celebrate a partnership with AMC Magic Johnson Theatres and our T.G.I. Friday’s restaurant in Los Angeles is the number one grossing stand alone corporate T.G.I. Friday’s restaurant in the Western Division.

Mrs. Brown spearheaded the launch of several major initiatives this past year: SodexoMagic (certified as a national minority supplier) and respective partnerships with Aetna and Best Buy. Magic Johnson Enterprises alliance with Aetna will embrace businesses and ethnically diverse communities to make informed choices about healthcare options. Similarly, Magic Johnson Enterprises has entered into a multi-year relationship with retail giant Best Buy to enhance urban retail growth strategies. SodexoMagic, LLC provides an extensive portfolio of food and facilities management services as well as offers signature dining facilities.

Prior to becoming Chief Operating Officer Mrs. Brown served as President of the Magic Johnson Foundation which works to address the educational, health and social needs of ethnically diverse, urban communities. While leading the Foundation, Mrs. Brown developed the Taylor Michaels Scholarship Program, which has awarded more than 250 college scholarships to deserving minority students, and opened 19 Magic Johnson Community Empowerment Centers located across the country to educate and elevate underserved communities with information and technology. She also oversaw the Foundation’s national fundraising activities including Magic Johnson’s Annual, “A Midsummer Night’s Magic.” Currently, Mrs. Brown is President of the Magic Johnson Foundation Board of Directors.

Mrs. Brown has been recognized for her outstanding contributions to business and volunteerism. She was recently awarded the prestigious Lexus “Pursuit of Perfection Award.” She’s a recipient of The Network Journal’s “40-Under-Forty Achievement Award” and the UCLA Black Alumni Association’s “Arthur Ashe Award.” She has also landed rightful spots on Black Enterprise’s annual “Hot List of America’s Most Powerful Players Under the age of 40” and on Essence Magazine’s “Power List.” Her personal commitment to community service is also demonstrated as she sits on the boards of the Magic Johnson Foundation and Educating Young Minds.  She has an honorarium from the City of Los Angeles and an Association Citation from the University of Southern California for her philanthropic work.

Mrs. Brown holds a bachelors degree from the University of California at Los Angeles.

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