Corporate Response to Black Lives Matter: How PayPal Stepped Up


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Show Overview:

Lisha Bell, one of the most senior executives at PayPal’s family of companies, felt empowered to speak up on behalf of her black colleagues in the workplace. The effect of her actions caused PayPal to join other major corporations who made donations in the black community in solidarity of the Black Lives Matter movement. The news of pledging over $500 million broke the internet as PayPal chose to support minority-owned businesses.

Lisha joined the GFGF co-hosts to discuss how the pledge came about, the difficulty – and necessity – of speaking out, and her thoughts on other corporations pledging to give money to the black community in the wake of police brutality.

About GFGF:

The Get Found Get Funded podcast is at the intersection of entrepreneurship and social justice where we focus on entrepreneurship as a possible path to wealth creation — specifically for Black and Latinx communities.

Featured Guest: Lisha Bell  

As Dealflow Lead at Pipeline Angels, an angel group of impact investors focused on women and non-binary femmes, Lisha liaises with Pipeline Angels’ 300+ members to assess due diligence process and  funding opportunities to complement the 4M Pipeline Angel portfolio.  

Lisha is currently at Braintree, a Paypal company, where she is the lead for the Pay with Venmo Product. 

Lisha’s prior tenure with Wells Fargo, Kohl’s, Feedzai  in product management helped to  inform a strategic look at payments, fraud, and customer experiences that examine not just the transaction itself, but also its impact on consumers from all segments.


Key Takeaways:

  • The importance of the role in tech to give back the wealth it generates to the communities it serves
  • The role of executives to speak out for those coming up 
  • The importance of building a foundation of relationships with people in power so you can speak out when the time comes
  • The difficulty for Black employees right now getting asked questions and having to do the emotional labor in Corporate America
  • Sometimes, when things get hard enough, it’s time to leave your job – if speaking up isn’t enough.


  • 01:00   Introduction
  • 03:46 Protest and empowerment
  • 06:37   Corporate responsibility 
  • 22:31 George Floyd’s impact
  • 28:39   The making of PayPal’s Black Business Grant
  • 45:46 Changes in PayPal
  • 56:33   Mac’s Story
  • 61:08 Outro

Items Mentioned in the Show:

Quotes from the Show:

  • "I think people are showing their true colors and it's people who are scared to take a stand because they have stakeholders who aren’t for you."
  • "I think that people should really look at who they look at who they work for, and their reputation, and where they stand because if they’re not supporting you today, you know it’s not going to change."
  • "There is such a great need for capital, such a great need for investment, and that message has gone back to our CEO and we’re calling on other companies, leaders, investors, ‘Can you join us? Can you help us? Because we need more money.’ It’s not enough and we are aware of that."
  • "Black people need to get into digital innovation. We need to get into digital money."
  • "The community is demanding that you focus on us."
  • "For the first time ever, we are getting Juneteenth off... I didn’t even get MLK day off at my last job."
  • "The announcement went out Thursday at 6 am est. The applications went live at 11 am Thursday est. By Friday morning, we had an emergency meeting. We have to shut this down. We had over 15,000 applications. Not only did we have 15,000 submitted applications, we had 7,000 in cue… We planned to run this program for a few months."
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