Hamilton family and Starbucks CEO talk race relations
The CEO of Starbucks traveled to Milwaukee on Wednesday for more than a little coffee talk. Howard Schultz met with the family of the man who was killed in Milwaukee's Red Arrow Park.
“We are grateful that he took the time to travel to Milwaukee to personally express his condolences for the loss of Dontre,” Nate Hamilton said.
Nate's brother, Dontre Hamilton, was shot and killed by former Milwaukee Police Officer Christopher Manney during a confrontation on April 30, 2014. It was an employee working at the Starbucks location at Red Arrow Park who called police to complain (Dontre) was sleeping outside.
During Wednesday's meeting, the two parties started a dialogue about social and economic justice. “We discussed what efforts corporations can make towards fixing racial inequality, which is so present in Milwaukee,” Hamilton said.
A representative from Starbucks says the meeting was very productive, but declined to provide further comment citing privacy for the Hamilton family.
Schultz recently made headlines for his effort to spark a national conversation on race through the Starbucks' “Race Together” campaign. According to the company, the initiative strives to inspire greater conversation, compassion and understanding around race relations in the U.S.
As part of Schultz's visit to Milwaukee, he also met with nearly 200 Starbucks employees for an open forum about race relations. It was the eighth forum in a series that Starbucks is hosting across the country.