SCMBEC Client Wins Regional Media Award

Source: South Carolina Minority Business Enterprise Center

June 15, 2010

Darrin Thomas, president of the Thomas Media Group, LLC, has recently been awarded with the Atlanta Regional Media Award from the Minority Business Development Agency (MBDA), for his contributions to the African-American business community through his work with the Black Pages USA publication.

In 1991, Darrin, a native of Florence, SC., and his former partner Gerry McCants, founded Thomas-McCants Media, Inc. and were known throughout out the southeast market as Black Pages USA. Years later, Thomas formed Thomas Media Group, LLC (headquartered in Columbia, SC), which continues to focus on publishing Black Pages directories and hosting Black Expos, both highlighting African-American owned businesses, in Georgia, Florida and South Carolina.

The Media Award is an annual award given by the MBDA, a division within the U.S. Department of Commerce, to one recipient throughout the Southeast region. Darrin's story was submitted by the South Carolina Minority Business Enterprise Center in March, and a few weeks later was announced as the recipient.

Diane E. Sumpter, project director of the Center, said “We nominated Darrin because of his ever-growing passion to help minority businesses. He’s worked hard his entire career to make sure that these businesses are heard, and have a fair chance of gaining business within the market.”

Darrin enjoys witnessing the growth and development of minority-owned businesses and the direct impact Black Pages has had on the community. “There are so many reasons why we’ve been effective, and not necessarily business-oriented,” he said. “For example, many years ago I had an elementary school student tell me she didn’t know Columbia had any black physicians until she saw them in the publication.” Columbia has had African-American physicians since the 1800’s.

Darrin will be accepting his award on August 12, 2010 in Atlanta, GA during the MBDA’s annual Minority Enterprise Development Week awards ceremony.