The 89th annual National Bankers Association convention are meeting in Detroit Oct. 5 and 6th. The group is a collective of banking institutions owned by people and women of color. The convention will honor Grammy Award-winning record producer, valued Association member, and banking pioneer Don Davis, who operated Michigan’s first Black-owned and operated bank.
Davis, a native of the Motor City, began his career in music in the mid-1950’s as a guitarist in his self-named jazz trio. He moved on to working as a session guitarist and record producer for various Detroit labels. Davis’ talents led to him working with vocalists like Mary Wells, among others.
In the late ’60’s, Davis found success with singer Johnnie Taylor and the pair had several charting hits. Davis co-wrote and co-produced Taylor’s “Disco Lady,” the first single to ever be certified platinum. In 1970, during this creative period, Davis opened the First Independence Bank . Although music his primary focus, Davis was quite involved with his banking institution, especially later in life.
Kiko Davis, the widow of Mr. Davis, is the founder and operator of the Don Davis Legacy Foundation, which grants scholarships and other opportunities in underserved communities.
This year’s National Bankers Association convention features Vivica A. Fox and Laz Alonzo as gala presenters. Johnny Gill is also a scheduled to perform.