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Pearl Milling Company Announces 2021 P.E.A.R.L. Pledge Grant Recipients

Grants Totaling $1 million Will be Awarded to 14 Nonprofit Organizations Focused on Uplifting Black Women and Girls

November 17, 2021 8:30 AM EST

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CHICAGO, Nov. 17, 2021 /PRNewswire/ -- Pearl Milling Company, the 132-year old pancake mix and syrup brand previously found under the Aunt Jemima name, today announced the 2021 recipients of its community funding initiative, P.E.A.R.L. Pledge. With a purpose rooted in inspiring moments of joy at the breakfast table and in communities it serves, Pearl Milling Company launched P.E.A.R.L. Pledge as a way to assist 501c (3) organizations working to empower Black women and girls across the country. In its inaugural year, Pearl Milling Company selected 14 organizations to receive grants ranging from $25,000 to $100,000 to help fund programs that support the P.E.A.R.L. Pledge mission.

"As we continue Pearl Milling Company's rebranding journey, we want to ensure we're showing up for our consumers and helping to create moments of joy in their lives in more impactful ways," said Michelle McAlister, Senior Director of Marketing. "The P.E.A.R.L. Pledge program champions the success of Black women and girls by focusing on the pillars of Prosperity, Empowerment, Access, Representation and Leadership. We are proud to support these amazing organizations as they help drive positive change in their communities."

Pearl Milling Company launched the P.E.A.R.L. Pledge program May 27 with a call for nominations and applications from 501c (3) organizations in communities across the country. With missions ranging from mental health advocacy to closing food inequality gaps, this year's grant recipients demonstrated a focus on multiple P.E.A.R.L. Pledge pillars through their inspiring work. Learn more about this year's P.E.A.R.L. Pledge recipients in the links below:

Pearl Milling Company worked with an Advisory Council comprised of influential women and industry thought leaders who have a personal interest in uplifting Black women and girls to help identify the 2021 P.E.A.R.L. Pledge grant recipients. They are:

  • Renae Bluitt, a filmmaker, podcaster and storyteller committed to centering and celebrating Black women. She channeled this passion into creating and executive producing her documentary, She Did That.
  • Eunique Jones Gibson, a creative visionary, cultural architect, and social activist who develops award-winning campaigns and products that ignite conversation, introspection, and social change. Among her most notable campaigns is "Because of Them We Can."
  • Valeisha Butterfield Jones, an award-winning global business leader with more than 20 years of experience working with Fortune 500 companies. She focuses on building more inclusivity for underrepresented communities at the intersections of technology, entertainment, and politics.
  • Elisa Camahort Page, an author, activist, entrepreneur, and consultant best known as the co-founder and COO of the global women's media company BlogHer. She also co-authored Road Map for Revolutionaries: Resistance, Activism, and Advocacy for All, a best-selling book about everyday activism.
  • Millie Peartree, a world-renowned chef, TV personality, restaurateur, and philanthropist who founded Full Heart Full Bellies, a charity that started in COVID-19 by providing meals for families in New York's Bronx community and continues to drive change by organizing food, information, and support drives to end food poverty.

"As someone who is deeply invested in amplifying and creating opportunities for the Black community, especially for Black women and girls, it was refreshing to see Pearl Milling Company create an initiative that supports amazing work already being done by nonprofit organizations across the country," said Eunique Jones Gibson, a P.E.A.R.L. Pledge advisor. "The dedication and passion of these organizations is inspiring, and I can't wait to see what they'll accomplish with the P.E.A.R.L. Pledge grant."

As an extension of PepsiCo's Racial Equality Journey efforts, P.E.A.R.L. Pledge adds to PepsiCo's community investment, which together with The PepsiCo Foundation, includes providing $6.5 million in community impact grants, $25 million to provide scholarship support for Black students, and creating pathways to high-quality careers through the Pathways to Readiness and Empowerment Program. In 2020, PepsiCo announced it will invest more than $400 million over five years focused on increasing Black representation at PepsiCo, supporting Black-owned businesses, and uplifting Black communities in the U.S.

The 2022 P.E.A.R.L. Pledge grant program details and entry dates will be announced in early 2022. For more information about P.E.A.R.L. Pledge, visit and follow Pearl Milling Company on social media at and

About Pearl Milling CompanyPearl Milling Company brand, owned by The Quaker Oats Company, a unit of PepsiCo, Inc., provides great-tasting pancake mixes, syrups, cornmeal, flour, and grits products that have been helping families create memorable breakfast moments for over a century. Founded in 1888, Pearl Milling Company began as a small mill in St. Joseph, Missouri producing flour, cornmeal and, beginning in 1889, the famous self-rising pancake mix that would go on to be known as Aunt Jemima. Its pancake mix varieties include Original, Buttermilk, Whole Wheat as well as its Pancake On The Go products in Chocolate Chip, Buttermilk & Maple, Blueberry, and Double Chocolate. Syrup varieties include Original, Lite, Butter Rich, Butter Lite, and Country Rich, in addition to several cornmeal, cornmeal mix and grits offerings. For more information, please visit www.pearl milling, or follow us on Instagram @pearlmillingcompany.

About The Quaker® Oats CompanyThe Quaker Oats Company, headquartered in Chicago, is a unit of PepsiCo, Inc., one of the world's largest consumer packaged goods companies. For more than 130 years, Quaker's brands have served as symbols of quality, great taste and nutrition. Holding leadership positions in their respective categories, Quaker® Oats, Quaker® Rice Cakes and Quaker Chewy® Granola Bars are consumer favorites. For more information, please visit or follow us on Twitter @Quaker.

About PepsiCoPepsiCo products are enjoyed by consumers more than one billion times a day in more than 200 countries and territories around the world. PepsiCo generated more than $67 billion in net revenue in 2019, driven by a complementary food and beverage portfolio that includes Frito-Lay, Gatorade, Pepsi-Cola, Quaker, and Tropicana. PepsiCo's product portfolio includes a wide range of enjoyable foods and beverages, including 23 brands that generate more than $1 billion each in estimated annual retail sales. Guiding PepsiCo is our vision to Be the Global Leader in Convenient Foods and Beverages by Winning with Purpose. "Winning with Purpose" reflects our ambition to win sustainably in the marketplace and embed purpose into all aspects of the business.  For more information, visit

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