Southfield, MI consistently takes the crown for the best place for Black women to live in the United States. According to MoneyGeek, the suburb of Detroit is an idyllic location for this group in particular to live their best life. Black residents make up more than 65 percent of Southfield. It is a place where Black professionals thrive in a variety of industries and own land, properties and businesses.
So what makes a city a place where specifically Black women flourish personally, professionally and financially? Survey results from MoneyGeek are based on a ranking of 200 cities with a population of 65,000 people and above. It analyzed factors such as income, poverty rate, educational level and homeownership. In the melanin-saturated city of Southfield women and children feel safe, students have access to a good education system and the Black community is visibly thriving (hello Black businesses!)
21Ninety spoke with a handful of Black women who live and work in the suburb about what it’s actually like. Here’s what they had to say about the perks of living in the best city for Black women.
A Sense of History
Yolanda Williams, Co-Founder and CEO of CREAM BLENDS skincare and Co-Founder and Chief Content Officer for DISTINCT LIFE Brand Development Agency, was born and raised in Detroit. She has been living in Southfield since she and her husband bought their home (which is where her grandmother lived) in 2009 after she passed away.
“This has been my home even as a little girl when I would stay with my grandma and grandpa when they first moved to Southfield from Detroit, and my neighbor directly next to me was there even when I was a little girl,” she said, “There is history here and it feels like home to me.”
A Plethora of Kick It Spots
For Jenell Lloyd, social community manager at Credit Acceptance, one of the best things about Southfield is the quick access to a good selection of food. She has a few favorite stops in the Southfield area for food and entertainment, including Lillie Mae’s Southern Buffet, Shish Kabob Express, Fish Bones and Duo Restaurant and Lounge.
“Before transitioning to remote work, numerous of my Black co-workers would often gather at the aforementioned spots,” Lloyd said. “The upside to having a large population of Black women in the area undoubtedly offers unspoken support and provides a sense of community for our culture.”
Lloyd also feels that Southfield provides an overall sense of safety while moving about the city.
“The city offers a good mix of peaceful neighborhoods and city life while providing access to quality housing and immediate personal needs such as groceries, gyms and food,” she said.
Williams agrees about the level of safety for women, as well as for children in the community.
“I feel safe in Southfield – My two Black sons feel safe and supported when exploring the neighborhood,” she said.
Southfield is also centrally located near several other prominent cities, including Detroit, that offer additional resources.
“Its location and proximity to freeways enables easy travel to any part of town after work,” Lloyd said.
A Thriving Black Community
With Southfield’s population being over 65 percent Black, living and working in Southfield means being part of a community strengthened by hardworking people, Lloyd explained.
“The upside to having a large population of Black women in the area undoubtedly offers unspoken support and provides a sense of community for our culture,” she said.
Williams shared that by living in Southfield she is able to connect both personally and professionally with a large network of successful Black women.
“I am proud to be living in ‘The Field,’ and you can truly thrive here,” Williams said. “Most of my opportunities seem to be in Detroit, but there are some big projects and initiatives coming to the city that I am really excited about.”