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🎙 Podcast: How dirt bike culture can bridge the Baltimore community

“People won’t always understand my vision, that’s fine. But understand the impact that we’ve had, where we’re planning to go, and how their donation or their support can lead to not just B-360 being successful, but a city being successful and…better police and community relations.”

Brittany Young is the founder and CEO of B-360. Based in Baltimore, Maryland, B-360 uses STEM education programming, community engagement, workforce development training, and dirt bike culture to end the cycle of poverty, disrupt the prison pipeline, and build bridges in communities. B-360 is equipping youth and adults with the skills to secure educational and career opportunities in STEM fields, motorsports, and beyond while changing the perception of dirt bike riders and engineers, and repairing and building relationships in the Baltimore community. Tune in to learn how Brittany’s holistic vision for community engagement and development in Baltimore is transforming institutions, narratives, and trajectories across the city.

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This podcast series is supported through a grant from the Citi Foundation and is presented as part of The Inclusive Social Entrepreneurship Initiative. With the support of the Citi Foundation, Echoing Green will accelerate leaders of color and leaders who represent communities of color by providing financial and leadership development support, creating visibility opportunities to amplify their voices and stories, and connecting them to Citi employee volunteers for advising and mentorship.

For more episodes of On Course: The Podcast from Echoing Green, visit anchor.fm/echoinggreen.

Episode Transcript

Eric
Hi and welcome to On Course, the podcast from Echoing Green that explores social entrepreneurship and the pieces of peoples lives that they tend to leave out of their bios.

Echoing Green is a premier global investor in new leaders who are boldy working to change the world. Providing fellowship, community, seed stage funding, and strategic support at that critical stage where they’re just trying to get off the ground.

My name is Eric Dawson. I’m a father, husband, social entrepreneur, storyteller, and I have the distinct honor of serving as a chaplain for Echoing Green. I along with my colleagues support fellows on their spiritual and emotional well being as they mediate between who they often feel they need to be publicly with how they often feel privately: I’m a fraud, I’m not good enough, I don’t know what I’m doing.

On Course is about the journey that these leaders take from the moment they decide to act, to create, to change.

In today’s episode, I’m talking to Brittany Young, Founder and CEO of B-360. Based in Baltimore, Maryland, B-360 utilizes STEM education programming, community engagement, workforce development training, and dirt bike culture to end the cycle of poverty, disrupt the prison pipeline, and build bridges in communities. B-360 is equipping youth and adults with the skills to secure educational and career opportunities in STEM fields, motorsports, and beyond while changing the perception of dirt bike riders and engineers and repairing and building relationships in the Baltimore community.

Brittany Young Entrepreneur scientists mover and shaker in the world. Dirt bikes. Let’s start with dirt bikes. So tell me about your love affair with dirt bikes. When did it start? How did it start?

Brittany
I think is really my love affair with Baltimore because dirt bikes and Baltimore like, but dirt bikes as much a part of Boltzmann’s coaches like snowballs, um, cribs obey. And so like my love affair just started with me being born and raised in a city. So when I was growing up, my friends, my uncle used to go to Dru Hill Park to watch the riders, it was every Sunday, so think of like a cookout. But then with 100 something people, and then people doing tricks and stunts. Like zipping past you as like an 11-year-old, a 10-year-old. And so just always been naturally fascinated by the riders. Growing up, a lot of kids, me included, wanted to be like the next big dirt bike rider. My problem was, I don’t have balance, and I fell a lot. And that just wasn’t for me. But I’ve always been an enthusiast. And when I think back about like my summers in my childhood, I smell the gasoline, I can hear the sound of the riders, that meant noise. And so dirt bikes, for me, the love affair, just really thinking about my upbringing as a youth in a city and being a black Baltimorean. That is a part of who I am identity.

Eric
So walk us through your story, right? So you didn’t, as a 15-year-old say, I’m going to use stem and dirt biking and changing the world. So how did you get from that? That that that summer? With with the gasoline and the noise and the family and the community? To start in the organization? What were the steps that led you from there to there?

Brittany
That’s a great question. Um, the first is really just remembering little Brittany. So as early as like first grade, I wanted to be in addition to a dirt bike rider of Bill Nye the Science Guy, and I wanted it to be like Bill because of the explosions. All the crazy stuff that he did, and I got in trouble a lot. And that’s what resonated with me the most is Brittany got this way because I’m not afraid to get in trouble. And little Brittany allows me to be the person I am now. And then I went on to college. And I did not see representation of myself. In this space. I had a lot of teachers pre-college also telling me it wasn’t a unattainable career field, but people who look like me. And when I first went to my position in engineering in STEM, I was confused for admin assistant. And so that made me angry. And I kind of carried the anger into starting programs and wanting to get more students from Baltimore City who look like me directly into STEM. And so pre we do 60 I was already creating like programming. So getting people from community college to NASA, starting robotics leagues and camps. But then the big Spark, the big fire was lit. With the Freddie Gray uprising as the world watch Baltimore burn. That’s also when my heart burned and exploded too. And I was fed up and tell you, I saw two distinct reports, one showing that Baltimore has over 120,000 STEM careers that can move communities out of poverty as a way of moving the city forward. But not an action plan of attracting students like me who can’t see themselves in the field. And then other reporting show we need more, more policing in communities. And I was definitely against that part. Because that same gear, my youngest brother was Thomas 16, was incarcerated in child and adult. So I really wanted the city to think about programmatic solutions for nonviolent offenses, how we can put real people in action in STEM careers and professions. But also keep showing how beautiful how genius how innately talented Baltimore people are, because we don’t always hear that side of the story. And what stuck out to me the most was when I created a dirt bike police Task Force, I just kept asking, Where was the programming, where was the alternative? And instead of keep asking the angry person in me, who’s not afraid to get in trouble. I just created the program myself. And so I was in Baltimore cores elevation awards. I was in a Social Innovation Lab at the same time while teaching, working in engineering, and also working at a community college, because I really believed in my city and I believed in the brilliance that was there. And I just really took off by talking to students then riders then a police commissioner, then launched with a public forum And then finally launched with our programming. And that’s kind of how b 360 got started just an idea that I wasn’t listening to people tell me no, because I had the support of the people that were closest to the problem, which was students and riders about a real solution. And once I got that help, that was ammunition, I needed to love the work that I do, because their voices were uplifted and heard. And I wanted to help be a part of that change, not only for myself, but for them. Because we’re wanting the same people. We’re all black from Baltimore, who have a cultural relevance that needs to be heard and expressed, and who need people to directly invest into making sure we grow to the next level.

Eric
Talk to me about your students. Who are they? What are their stories? What are their love? What drives them? Crazy?

Brittany
Huh? My students are me, that’s what’s funny, I think, they really are a little Brittany. So people who have like skill sets, a lot of them have been riding bikes, as they were like five or six, who knows everything from the inside to the outside about a dirt bike, the pistons, the gears, the different type of tires, I’ve learned so much about dirt bikes, I don’t think I’m supposed to know, just from listening to them. And I remember our first meeting, I asked them, what do they like to do Renu? It was dirt bikes. And I was like, Well, what do you want to do in the future, and the class paused, I was the first teacher to ask them what they like to do. And they were already in fifth grade and sixth grade at the time. And for me, that was like, nostalgic, again, because that’s similar to what happened to me in elementary school, I didn’t have a teacher that asked me what I like to do and so third grade, and who really took the time to invest in me, her name was Miss Taylor. So innately, I became Miss Taylor to them, because I know what it feels like to not see yourself in like school to be really smart, and always lash out because you’re bored. And that’s really what my students were, we’re just bored and really want someone to listen. So some of like, the good stories, I’ll start there. Um, they have presented at Hopkins with me, they want pitch competitions. So right before my, my final Echoing Green interview, I had just came from Baltimore, because we were on the stage at Light City. And I had two students present with me. So at the time, they were in seventh grade, and one a pitch competition. They’ve been now across the country, so to Texas, to Oakland, Atlanta, to really show people their style of riding. And what I always make sure that they understand is that it’s a privilege to get to know them, not the opposite. And so making sure that regardless of where we go, people receive them how they’re supposed to. And I’m most proud of how they’ve grown their voices. So they’re not afraid to talk about yes, they ride their bikes, yes, they want to go into these career fields. But at the same time, they acknowledge that they’re kids. And what I appreciate is seeing them be free be in their element when they’re on the bike, so we don’t activities. What I like is that that’s the isolated space where they don’t have to think about anything. And so like some highlights of just, most recently, they’ve been in a campaign with HBO around “why I ride.” So think about being in a campaign with HBO is now 14-year-olds, and seeing like their own star power and their own voices and like the growth and potential. And then I think about Mike. So Mike, I met him when he was 17. Somehow Mike decided to trust me, which was good. When I met him. He was graduating from high school. He did not know what he wanted to do yet, which is typical. He knew that he loved everything about dirt bikes, and had been riding since he was six and seven, and also had a lot of interaction with the police. And he reminded me of my little brother, and for me, I didn’t plan on having another brother. But Mike has grown into like my brother’s my son. And I think what represents you know, who my own brother could have been if given opportunity. So Mike has worked and done production of Redbull. He’s also been a leading instructor, pre-COVID he was on a track to be a manager of B-360. And what I’m most proud of for him is again, finally him being able to tell his authentic story of yes he rides dirt bikes, you Yes, he’s been in jail before. But most importantly, look at who he is now. He’s the person that’s helped us teach over 7,000 students, he is that person has helped us train more than 36 dirtbike products. And I think those stories are the ones that people need to think about the most when they think about Baltimore. And when you think about dirtbike riders is that their regular people will need help and support who will already brilliant that just needed a leveled uplift, and who really want to make sure that they can see their future generations have safe spaces, opportunities. And the only way of moving forward is by working directly with the people close to the problem. And that looks like Mike and it looks like Deran looks Kumaya, who’s a little girl who’s been riding since she was four, Tony and Amman. Kids from Baltimore that are going to make it well beyond me and well past me. And my only job is to just be that catalyst out and get there.

Eric
I just want to say I love this idea that as we think about funders and media, this idea that they should be lucky enough to get to work with your students. So talk to us about the program itself. So I’m a young person in Baltimore. What is B-360 mean to me? What’s the experience like?

Brittany
I think what it means to like young, old, anyone is probably freedom, and a different take on the age-old problem of not just really about STEM, but about, yes, you can ride a dirt bike, and we don’t frown upon it, we just say how you can do it better. And us also acknowledging like just how smart people are, I think before me in a lot of times, like education or like philanthropy, the idea is that people need to be saved. And I think what makes us very unique is that we’re showing people that they are assets, and the only way of making these solutions is with them. And so the way that we even talk about the program, and the way we talk about the people is never from a deficit is always to make sure we elevate them. And so in our program, if you’re under 16, you’re in the program, if you’re over 16, we hire you and train you to work with the younger kids. And so you learn everything about the engineering design process. So cognitive reasoning skills, about how to build, code, design, and 3d print a model size dirt bike. So think of a dirt bike that fits in the palm of your hand. And it connects to your phone to pop wheelies, do tricks, and do stunts. And the reason why I wanted that part to be so crucial is because the way that engineering is taught typically is that you just read about the theory. But if you practice the theory, you can see how it actually goes together. And it’s fun. And then a second half of programming is people fixing repair dirt bikes. And that part causes me the most challenges, because in Baltimore it can be a misdemeanor to possess a dirt bike. So technically, the work that we do is illegal. But we’ve maintained great relationships. And I don’t think people like scared of kids fixing bikes, hopefully, and even if they do, not my problem. But that part to me is very special too because they can repair bikes to sell for a profit with older routers also create events for the style of riding. So at the end, they do a showcase. We did our first one in Baltimore last summer. So think about 12 people who were in enclosed, an enclosed parking lot, supported by Red Bull, during a festival and people came out to watch and the bikes they wrote, they repaired themselves. And previously they had done like the robotics programming. And so what I think it really represents against like, people, parents, the community is showing how smart again, the brilliance we already have that people never want to tap into. And what people always call innovation, which is a term I only recently heard since being in this space is really that survival technique. Most recently I got pinged on Facebook, by a group of students, their parents found them like fixing their own dirt bikes and say, Can you bring the B-360 to our community? Right, because people were already doing this.

Eric
I imagine there’s a tension in your program around the riding itself. Right? That the sense of freedom and creativity, and also safety and legality, how do you balance that?

Brittany
Um, first acknowledging that, yes, dirt bike ride, just like any sport can be dangerous. And that’s why you put things in place. So all of our students, if you’re under 18, you wear a helmet period point-blank, people over 18 also wear helmets as well to like show the younger generation that it’s possible. We make sure the helmets that they get like they can customize them. Because a lot of times, helmets are more expensive for like motocross and dirt bike riding, but also not conducive for like our style of riding. So we try to make them as like fashionable, as cool as possible. educating people on the law and policies, a lot of people probably more than 90% of Baltimore does not know that in the city, it can be a misdemeanor to own a dirt bike, to run on public property and or to run on private property. So making sure that parents before you purchase a bike, know about your bike can get confiscated, you will lose out on money. And the next piece is we’ll be putting into practice things. So none of our students and people who are in our program write in traffic as a very strict statement. And we advocate for those who don’t ride in traffic. So this means we don’t have a problem with popping wheelies, we just create the space to do it. That means we can take over a school gym a failed a street by blocking it off a parking lot, travel to different cities, but he has spaces. But it’s really about just read teaching people on how to how to use it and when to use it. But also acknowledging the elephant in the room that there is nothing wrong with popping a wheelie people get paid and X Games and all these big events to do it. There is nothing wrong with riding a dirt bike is and it is a sport in a creative release. Our only pain point is making sure people know how we can make this more safe. And we do so by teaching them to not ride in traffic.

Eric
One thing Brittany that I think is so powerful about your model is that it is embodied. Right? It is coming together. And it is located in a place a culture, a community. How do you navigate those strains in a pandemic? Where all of those embodied experiences can’t happen?

Brittany
That is a great question. I’m still figuring it out. Um, so we’ve been doing really well with like virtual. So we started some virtual series, we actually have done in-person programming too, because we have such a large request. So we just made our like classroom sizes smaller. Next week, we’re starting with a class that will be 10 students with two dirt bike riders, teaching it. And then again, since we’re riding dirt bikes outside, when we don’t have rain, we still do the like the parking lot. activities, we still do just safe space brought in. So we’ve pivoted to just smaller models, the biggest challenge has been the decrease in our budget because we have maintained on fee for service programming. So in 2019, I worked really hard to secure about $435,000 in just contracts alone. Because we’ve never seen grants that have been larger than $15K. Outside of like, you know, Echoing Green Fellowships to support program. And I don’t know if people know this about me, my name on Instagram is cntknockBhustle for reason. Because I’ve always known how to figure out how to get the money, as well as like solve the problems. And so 2019 was supposed to be, you know, the year for 2020, when we got stable. And with COVID, that’s been probably most difficult is we can’t hire Mike full-time as the manager because we don’t have the budget, I am not full-time because we don’t have the budget. We can’t do as much programming because we don’t have the budget. So just really trying to work to get people to support us being in philanthropy now. And hating how that system works. Because I’ve never allowed on it has been a challenge. So really wanting people to give to the organization for us to find donors and sponsors that can keep you know, the work that we’re doing alive. Being in the middle of election season to on top of a global pandemic. So really want to work with like the government on solutions that if you can polish the problem, you can easily give to B-360 because we have the same outcome. So that’s how we probably like to navigate it COVID slash and uprising slash election season slash philanthropy.

Eric
But let’s spend a moment on philanthropy. I imagine there are a lot of people listening who are nodding their heads when you talk about the frustration of getting resources. Why do you think that is? And if you could wave your magic wand and change the world of philanthropy, what would you do?

Brittany
Um, I think philanthropy has been a problem, I mean it can be the same thing in VC funding. So we are a hybrid. We have a nonprofit STEM program and then for-profit entity of like services consultant and whatever products we’ll put out. And it’s a challenge on both ends because philanthropy or VC, same thing, fundraising is white male-dominated, which has racial biases, where people naturally don’t trust Black people. And then don’t trust Black women on top of that, yes, we can have thriving businesses. Yes, I can be in every news media outlet article, I don’t know how many more awards I can win um, and how many like spotlight opportunities until that still does not translate into funding. Because I think for so long, the way that people have thought about fundraising and philanthropy has been you give to things you understand. And I know, for us, a lot of people who are not, you know, Black or brown, with no experiences with dirt bikes either only know about what they read in the media. And if you don’t read stuff about B-360, you assume that dirt bike riders carry guns, so drugs, etc. And so that’s how people think, anyway, about Black and brown bodies, is that where people don’t need to be controlled. And so I think finance should be has a hard lens of needing to reshape itself to not need to understand why something works, but just accept that it does. And to put resources to it. I think challenges in philanthropy are also people typically give to a foundation. And then foundations are supposed to give to the people. But we know that causes problems because foundations also don’t have a wide enough net or deep enough net. And, again, the notion is that I’m not trusted enough, not directly me. But you have biases against people who look like me where you don’t want to give. But I think, hopefully, philanthropy can keep changing, I hope with these recent uprisings, which is also tough to say, people realize that Black leadership, we just need investment, we don’t need people telling us what to do. But I’m not also, it’s tough for me to say that because I also don’t want more people to die, just for people to realize that you need to support us. Right. So it was an interesting space where people have rushed to emergency situations, we saw all the companies, corporations, foundations, anyone you can think about rushing to COVID relief when it first started. But the racial uprisings that have happened and trickled in this country for over 100 plus years, we have never made that emergency situation. So I’m just curious to see how how the water and the color of the water will keep changing, and how philanthropy, you will kind of just cast a wide and deep net, to think beyond assumptions and to realize that the solutions to any problem that exists are already happening communities, where people are not getting investment. And that’s why we don’t get to grow to a large scale. When I think about white-led organizations, I think the frustration I have sometimes is, I know that the work that we’re doing, and a lot of my colleagues are doing is 10 times more impactful, we’ve probably served more students and done bigger outreach. But the access problem we have is what holds us back in our organizations. And I’m not sure of how many white-led organizations can say that they are at the stage that we are still not on payroll as a founder. And I think that’s a part of some of the issues is because it’s black people, you know, we have to solve the challenges in our community. At the end of the day, I’m always gonna be Black from Baltimore. And so I don’t have a choice but to make my solution work. That also puts the burden on me that sometimes I’m not seen as a person that needs payment, or we don’t mean investment because we just have to keep doing the hard work.

Eric
I want to dig into something that you said that it’s really important that this idea that philanthropists want to fund things that they understand. And I think connected to that is that philanthropists want to fund people who look like them. And, you know, someone listening right now, again, is nodding your head and saying, like you Brittany, I’ve often been the only one in a room, get the message that I don’t belong, that I’m not worthy. What message do you have for those entrepreneurs of color? There’s women of color-led organizations. What advice do you have?

Brittany
Um, the advice is really get to try and get your foundation. So like I said, the reason why I think I’ve been successful is because I always hold on to little Brittany, and I failed previously before starting B-360. And I’ve again, I’ve always just been a Black woman. So I knew all the challenges the obstacles I would confront. But the real like power that I have, is that I did not seek validation of people who are not representative of the people I choose to serve. So I didn’t go to philanthropy saying, hey, accept me, put me at the table. Make a table for me. I first went to my own community and make sure they you know, they recharge, and rebuilt me. And that love that I have comes from them. Because I know so many people that support the work we do not even just depend on the work that we do, but really want to see us win, select the students we work with, to rise work with, and the people that support, I would say, always lean on those people. And not really like you don’t need validation, do your work, of course, we need investment. But your validation comes from who you serve. And as long as my kids always smiling, as long as people feel connected to our work, we could never get another dollar or another cent, which will be difficult. But I know that the work we’re doing is impactful and meaningful. And then I just always hone back into who I am, when I’m not afraid to challenge people and I’m not afraid to stand on my own. And where there are spaces that don’t have people who look like me, that’s a problem. So I always make sure to I bring more people along who do and or create my own space because I’m not, I’m not interested in conforming. And I could see that too. And like the motorsports field. So motorsports, motocross is really white male-dominated. And we’re not saying Hey, kids, go ride on dirt and be like them, we’re saying we want the same equal investment to do our style of riding on asphalt. And so that’s my advice to people, Black brown women, is really rests on your own ingenuity that you’re smart, rests on the community and tribe that you built. And to make sure at the forefront of everything you do they support you because they are the people that are going to constantly refill you and recharge you. Like we get bombarded with the most racist comments. And I don’t even I can laugh at those because I know how supportive I am and how supported we do 60 days to this day.

Eric
I think there’s a tension in social change circles about focusing on the systemic problems versus the immediate problems. How do you balance that in your own work and think about that?

Brittany
Um, I think when I first started B-360, already knew was a systemic issue. And that was probably my problem is, I’m naturally a big thinker. I’m a master builder. That’s one of my power numbers in numerology. Um, so I saw like, where I want to B-360 to be as the final result, and I knew that the challenges that I was against were systemic, which is based in racism, that the reason why people have a problem with dirt bike riders is just a part of it can be dangerous, but two is how do Black people, Black men and boys. And so I had to be in programs like Echoing Green in different cohorts to make sure that even though I cast my big vision of system change, I was also getting like the business structure and acumen to think about the smaller things that lead up to that. So like the logic model, you know, and I did my logic model in 2016, you know, really big picture, but also really small each year of what I wanted to hit my targets, because I wanted to make sure, like, my vision is big. But in order to get there, I have to pace myself. And so my balance has been, always keep in my mind of where I want to go. But making sure you know, daily, weekly, yearly, we’re hitting certain targets and goals, because it can be easy to get wrapped up in just the big system. But you also have to do action now. And I think, again, with COVID, that kind of helped in a way of making sure I stayed in like our focus lane and our zone of genius, to make sure I was still pressing hard of what I needed to do to still meet the goals, even for the budget, even in the middle of a pandemic with all this happening.

Eric
One of the challenges that a lot of social entrepreneurs face is funding comes in silos, but programming is done holistically. Right. So as I listen to your description of a B-360. It’s a STEM program. It’s a racial justice program. It’s a development program. It’s a youth development program. It’s a youth employment program. It’s an entrepreneurship program. It’s an arts program. It’s a sports program. How do you help people see the fullness of your work in a way they can understand?

Brittany
I think I’m still challenged in that way. Because what you’re saying, people love to categorize as a STEM program, which is a part of what we do. So it’s just really taken, it depends on the audience, one, and taking the nuggets that will resonate. So usually people are attracted to us because they know about STEM program. And then I’ll explain how the STEM program pay plays into like the largest system, that we are attracting new for young adults, so we can deter them from street riding. And a way of doing it is, you know, enticing them to still ride safely with us, but giving them transferable skills. And then the next level is now they have those transferable skills, and they don’t ride and traffic, we do events, and with events that gets into like monetizing their time providing revenue for cities, and also getting a play into that $32 billion Motorsports industry. And so cities hear, money, if people and events hear, money, riders hear, money and their style of riding being displayed. And then the next level for us is really around policy and reform. Because people always talk about a space. Yes, we want to own a space, we don’t want the city to do it. But the policy that we have in cities is where that comes into apart is if cities want streets to be safer. If you want riders to get out of traffic, that means you need to work with us, but to have better like policy and reform things. And so I think this is really how we roll people in has been to our STEM program. And then once they talk to me see the vision, you see how those things differently into play. And you can pick which one of those three systems that you want to buy into, because if you buy into one, you also kind of buy into all of them. It just really the biggest challenge has been making sure people understand the STEM programs, though, to make sure they understand the new narrative about dirtbike riders were carving out. And again, people won’t always understand my vision, that’s fine. But understanding the impact that we’ve had, where we’re planning to go, and how like their donation or their support can lead to not just B-360 being successful, but a city being successful and individual, better police and community relations. And so just the way we speak into whom we speak has been a vital part of relationship-building, asset mapping, and really people in for the big picture, even when they can’t understand all the layers and I don’t expect that because people don’t think like how I do, but they can understand one of those three buckets around safety for cities education, and or events that drive city’s revenue in somewhere people will grab onto something.

Eric
So a movie just came out. Charm City Kings. It’s about your young people, about the city of Baltimore. What’s was the experience like of the movie coming out?

Brittany
Um, I think the movie so what I appreciated about it was it provided short-term job opportunities to people. It was filmed in Baltimore for about four months. And a lot of like riders got to be featured. What has been the hard part about that movie has been the stereotypical portrayal of dirt bike riders being criminals, drug dealers. Since that movie has come out we’ve received also a lot of like negative comments, a lot of stuff I can’t say in this podcast of people’s misconceptions and preconceived notions. And my only issue with that film has been the role of the city. So for me in Baltimore is a daily challenge of me trying to convince Baltimore of why they need to invest in us to get us a safe space. And so if you can film for four months in the heart of West Baltimore, that also shows if you build a space people will come. So it was kind of has been a challenge, mentally for me to understand how a city that demonizes dirt bike riders, and does not like them in streets, allows a movie to be filmed because that is a surge in dirt bike riders, young and old, they still do not have a space to go to we still do not have investment in programming. And I wish that people thought more about the proactive solutions that can avoid those types of situations scenarios. Because it’s kind of a slap in the face being from here of being tired of saying the same monolithic story about Black Baltimore struggles of saying people make money from a portrayal of riders who don’t benefit the riding culture and still being left at wondering what do the riders get after this movie? And so far, it’s been nothing but increased policing, and more people riding in more turmoil.

Eric
What’s the future for you? What’s the future for B-360.

Brittany
The future once we get money is to have a permanent facility in Baltimore. And then in every major city where there’s riders where we own a space not the cities that own the space, but in partnership, where people are taking classes on how to build repair, fix dirt bikes, people are bringing in that car is that bicycle. So think about an auto body shop in the same facility slash campus. We’re manufacturing dirt bikes in the same space. So taking the ones that are confiscated by the city, using them for programming without using young adults. And then they’ll same you for young adults are selling those dirt bikes as we keep manufacturing more as own in the Motorsports industry in this way, by doing events, indoor and outdoor events. And really, if you think about like, yeah, a college campus for dirt bikes, that is what I envision the future of B-360. A one-stop-shop, where we’re making the helmets, we’re making the equipment, we’re making the dirt bikes, we’re doing the program and we’re expanding minds, we’re hosting events with cities, ESPN features, our facilities, on the big jumbotron. We’re doing events that are interconnected between different cities as competitions, and really just showing like, again, that brilliance that talent, the fun through in a controlled safe space. That’s more than just about riding, it’s about how we gain equitable power and systems change in is one big facility.

Eric
I love it. And so folks want to learn more about the work how can they?

Brittany
They can go to b360baltimore.org. And or on Facebook at B-360 Baltimore. That’s my PBS voice.

Eric
It’s good. You should do podcasts.

Brittany
No, thank you. I’ll leave it to you.

Eric
So Brittany, I’m going to end with my fast 5. 5 quick questions. A phrase or sentence answer for each. You have a free Saturday afternoon. How do you spend it?

Brittany
Sleeping? Oh, that was my whole answer. I have a free Saturday afternoon. I’m going to sleep. I value sleep and rest. I do not believe you have to do a lot of stuff. So I’m sleeping.

Eric
When you run for mayor of Baltimore, what’s your slogan?

Brittany
I am not running for mayor of Baltimore or in politics at all. I’m actually supporting, um, this is a long answer sorry, I’m supporting hopefully the presumptive mayor’s transition team. So my slogan from Shirley Chisholm I’m a borrow is unbossed unbought. Because that’s me and I resonate a lot with her.

Eric
Let’s say you take over the Gates Foundation and have billions of dollars to give away, what’s the first thing you would do?

Brittany
So that’s a hard question. Um, billions of dollars to giveaway, I guess the first thing I would do is buy Baltimore. When I say buy it, I mean, it’s like directly, like, invest in infrastructure, not do philanthropy, not do foundations, but to the people. And literally, like, buy up part to the city so that I can own it and make sure that people can stay in their homes. And then make sure that you know, we had those spaces for B-360. And think about the business side of having a billion dollars.

Eric
If you could have any song play when you walked into the room, what would it be?

Brittany
“As” by Stevie Wonder

Eric
If you could sit down with little Brittany, what’s one piece of advice you’d give her?

Brittany
That it’s okay, to not be okay. I don’t think people ever told me that in my life. I’m the oldest of four. I’ve always been the independent person that you see today, which is because I’ve experienced a lot. And when my mom passed specifically, I was like, 18, my second week of college, and I didn’t know what depression was or grief, or I never had someone tell me that you can just sit down. And not, can I curse, not give a f*ck. You know, I think that’s an important skill set for Black girls is you can just sit the f*ck down. And you don’t have to save the world. And you don’t have to be responsible. And it’s okay to let people handle stuff. And you don’t have to take on the world’s burdens. I feel like a lot of little Brittany still this Brittany is um, you know, the brainchild of like my ancestors who have fought and struggled their whole life. And I still carry that with me. And that is a part of the errors and the problems in the system is that I always feel compelled to take on all of the struggles and challenges, and I hate it. And I want more people to just live in like luxury and do nothing and to not be okay.

Eric
Britney, I want to end by saying thank you for your time for your wisdom. As you’re talking I’m thinking about the late john lewis and his exhortation towards good trouble. And the power of what you do of bringing together disparate ideas, right, this idea that that anger is power. This idea that we need to shift stories, right, the dirt bikes aren’t hoodlums, they’re athletes, they’re creators. This idea that the world doesn’t have to be as it is the way that you make people see you and therefore help others to be seen. It’s a gift. We need more of it. And we need to get to a million dollars. So whoever’s listening, that’s your homework. 2 million.

Brittany
Yeah, a million is low balling right to that’s what I mean. See, people? Oh, yeah, we got that lowballing people get a million dollars every day. Not me, but I need two.

I in my interview told Echoing Green I don’t think I’m actually special. Um, I think what is unique is, you know, like you said, how I make people listen to me because that’s a part of me being a bully that still resonates with me a little Brittany. But I think my story and who I am and how many people are just like Me is a lot of us is really making sure we get, you know, closer to those people and like the voices resonate. And I was my one thing with Echoing Green I said I want to help with. So, um, you know, I’m excited. I feel like people you know, who know me now know about Echoing Green, which is good but also, um, regular curse. Heaven have a temporary… had h-a-d past tense. Um, and I think that’s what also resonates with people. I’m not like, perfect. Praise God.

Eric
To learn more about Echoing Green, go to echoinggreen.org. And don’t miss any of our episodes. Subscribe where you get your podcasts. And don’t forget to leave a rating so other listeners can find us. I’m Eric Dawson stay on course.

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