Jay Z’s Mom, Gloria Carter, Talks Candidly About Origin of Shawn Carter Foundation

Image Courtesy: USA TODAY, Todd Plitt
Image Courtesy: USA TODAY, Todd Plitt

Mama Carter was relatively silent when it came to the brouhaha that went down last year with her son’s holiday line contribution for Barney’s New York, and she’s still mum. Guess, the numbers speak for themselves: over $1 million was raised for the Shawn Carter Foundation in the deal. But, she was pretty chatty (despite her self-described shyness) with USA Today about the foundation’s  start and how her hopes for Blue Ivy match her org’s vision.

Gloria Carter birthed the idea of the foundation while attending her mentee’s graduation and showered her with praise.

He started speaking about this woman who had made an impact on his life. I didn’t even realize that I had been a mentor — I was just trying to help this young man. After that, I realized there are so many people who need to be touched.

Soon after she called Jay Z and pitched a foundation that would help under-served youth get a higher learning education. A decade later, the public charity has helped 176 students go to colleges around the country.

We have kids who act as the moms and dads of their families, kids who are products of the foster care system, kids who were in prison. They still want to pursue a further education, whether it’s at a four-year institution or a community college or vocational school.

The foundation also promotes initiatives like a scholarship fund, college tours and study-abroad programs to enlighten kids.

This became Mama Carter’s passion project when Jay and his siblings pushed her to retire working for the NYC Comptroller’s office. Not comfortable being a woman of leisure, the Shawn Carter Foundation filled the void.

And what does she stress to Blue Ivy and her other eight grandchildren?

the importance of having an education, and of being a good person. In order to get respect, you have to give it.

Amen!!! Spoken like an old school Brooklyn mom. To hear more of Gloria Carter’s USA Today interview click here. 

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