Event Coordinator , Vendor Coordinator and Sponsorship
Founder/CEO St. Louis Natural Hair & Black Culture Expo, LLC
Christopher H. Simpson “Chris” was born, raised and educated in St. Louis, Missouri. Chris graduated from Soldan International Studies High School and attended St. Louis Community College. Chris has worked in the restaurant industry, home healthcare and also sales. Chris realized early on that he had to be an entrepreneur so that he could create opportunities for himself and also for those within the community. With this, ABC Bling was born! Chris along with his business partner, Omar Perkins began creating custom “Bling” prints, apparel and designs for retail and wholesale. Today, Chris runs Raw Blend Customs as an independent proprietor, creating custom “Bling” tees and apparel as well as billboards, signs, business cards, logos, and etc.
Chris has always been surrounded by community activism as his mother, Mrs. Brenda Simpson is a pillar in the community and continues to demonstrate the importance of community outreach and support. Chris being deeply rooted in the community, realized a void existed in St. Louis in natural hair care and healthy, natural, life style choices for the African community. In his many travels, Chris researched other markets to better understand how Expos and hair shows are produced. Teaming with a group of other like-minded entrepreneurs, the Natural Hair & Black Culture Expo was born in April 2015. Chris and his team then planned and launched the September 2015, St. Louis Natural Hair & Black Culture Expo. This time, the Expo had grown exponentially in size and demand! Chris realized then, the importance of having a team around him who possessed the same passion and motivation and who had a love of all things natural! With this, Elizabeth Donielle, Belle Be and Dr. G, all having worked or volunteered for the September 2015 Expo, became a permanent part of the St. Louis Natural Hair & Black Culture Expo, LLC Family. Chris moved to establish the St. Louis Natural Hair & Black Culture Expo as an LLC, with a mission “to promote natural hair, healthy living and concepts of beauty for the African family” and a goal “to provide a platform for small community-based businesses to market and sell their products and services…” With his team in place, Chris launched the October 2, 2016 Expo, welcoming upward of 1000+ guests! Chris is not only a business man and entrepreneur, he is also a community volunteer, a loving brother to his only sister, Maisha, a father of four, and a grandfather. Chris is a basketball coach for the “pee-wee” league with Team Ville from Tandy Community Center. You can often find Chris at local community events volunteering or vending and providing custom prints and designs to his patrons. In 2010, Chris and Omar received the Business of the Year Award from the City of St. Louis. In 2016, Chris received an honor from the City of St. Louis for his volunteerism at Tandy Community Center.