Olander Banks, Sr., an Alexandria native, established the Zero Cab taxi service and a trucking company in the 1950s. Later he built Banks Auto Parts, his primary business. In 2001, he donated his ten-acre property in Fairfax County to the Parks Authority to become the Margaret Lomax and Olander Banks, Sr. Community Park.
John Wesley Jackson was one of the first black hotel owners in Alexandria, the Hotel Jackson located on King and Peyton Streets. Jackson founded Mount Jezreel Baptist Church in 1890. In 1917, he purchased a house at 521 North Henry Street. It functioned as a rooming house and a bakery. It was the only place chauffeurs and other service workers could stay, due to segregated hotels.
Richard Diggs is the owner of Alexandria Pest Services, Inc. He has encouraged numerous individuals to follow in his footsteps to start their own business. Diggs has provided jobs to dozens of Alexandrians and has passionately mentored disadvantaged youth to overcome the negative attractions of life to become productive and employable citizens. He is the co-founder of Minorities in Pest Management.
Entrepreneur / Minister
Charles Hall was the first black general manager in Boeing Computer Services. In 1995, he founded HMS Enterprises. In 1989, Hall received the National Achievers Award as founder of “Brothers and Sisters Who Care.” He was ordained as a minister in 2012 and installed as Pastor of Saint John’s Baptist Church in Alexandria, Virginia.