For Immediate Release
Feb. 28, 2020
In Meeting with High School Students and Staff, Activist, Rapper and Entrepreneur Michael Render, pka Killer Mike Explains His, Tip ‘T.I’ Harris’ and Noel Khalil’s Vision for Bankhead Seafood
ATLANTA, GA – As Black History Month comes to an end, three notable Atlantans are taking extraordinary strides to ensure black futures. In a press event at Frederick Douglass High School, Michael Render, pka Killer Mike, detailed his, real estate developer Noel Khalil, and actor, Grammy Award winning rapper, and serial entrepreneur Tip ‘T.I.’ Harris’s vision for reopening Bankhead Seafood.
On behalf of his co-owners, Harris and Khalil, who were unable to attend, Render paid homage to the restaurant’s original owner, Helen Harden, before making space for her to address the crowd of more than 100 people. The event was held at Frederick Douglass High School, where Render and Harris attended. Their former classmate, Atlanta Chief Judge Asha Jackson, also attended the event and offered remarks in support of Harris and Render’s accomplishment.
Notably, Daniel Moss, chief people person of HBCU Connection, traveled from Columbus, Ohio to mark the occasion and support the opening, by announcing scholarships for a limited number of Frederick Douglass High School students interested in attending a Historically Black College or University.
“When I was growing up, Mrs. Harden would prepare huge meals and sell them for $5 each,” said actor, activist, rapper and entrepreneur Tip “T.I.” Harris. “For people with limited financial means, this meant the difference between eating with dignity and experiencing the degradation that comes with lack. While Mrs. Harden was running a business, it was clear that she cared about the community. She is a model for the type of business owners we want to become, and a blueprint for the culture we want to have in the restaurant.”
“When you have a business owner and a restaurant with this sort of legacy, someone who ran a restaurant for fifty years, you do not let it slip away,” said activist, rapper and entrepreneur Michael Render, pka Killer Mike. “Mrs. Harden wanted the restaurant to remain in the community and it’s our duty to help her dream become a reality. The job of my generation and future generations is to pick up where our elders, people like Mrs. Harden, left off.”
While the group will break ground on the actual restaurant later this year, the food truck for the restaurant will be operational in weeks.
“We aren’t out-of-state investor with zero connection or compassion for the surrounding community,” said developer and Bankhead Seafood co-owner Noel Khalil. “We are neighbors who are not only committed to the restaurant, but to the people in it – our peers, friends, relatives and acquaintances.”
“Having grown up in the same neighborhood where the restaurant is located, we purchased Bankhead Seafood as part of a broader commitment to bring jobs and opportunity to a place many of us have long called home,” Khalil concluded.
About the Owners
Noel Khalil is a noted developer, affordable housing advocate and founder and principal of Columbia Residential, LLC.
Michael Render is an activist, Grammy Award winning rapper and businessman. He is the host of the Netflix special, “Trigger Warning with Killer Mike,” and one half of the hip hop duo, Run the Jewels.
Tip ‘T.I.’ Harris is an actor, Grammy Award winning rapper, art curator, entrepreneur, philanthropist and activist.
Internationally known and accomplished, Render and Harris have made a practice of seeking frequent counsel from civil rights leaders, neighborhood elders and businesspeople. Khalil is the duo’s long-time mentor.