“Never in my wildest imagination would I have thought I’d end up owning a funeral home,” Mitchell said pensively. “It’s mind-boggling.”
Clients benefit as Linda Mitchell leads Black & Clark to new heights
by Norma Adams-Wade
Courtesy Cheryl Smith IMessenger
Friends who grew up with business juggernaut Linda Mitchell say she showed signs of her professional future as a child. They just did not know what those signs meant.
The friends were not alone. Mitchell said recently that she, too, did not understand traits about herself that gave hints of her coming career, business savvy, and community service.
The owner, president and chief executive officer of historic Black & Clark Funeral Home in Dallas looked back over her life recently during an IMessenger interview and marveled at the journey that brought her to this point — sitting behind the Black & Clark CEO desk where – in one of her familiar phrases — the buck stops.
Mitchell has covered much ground and survived hard-hitting business and personal blows on her way to this juncture. She has gained a reputation as a successful businesswoman with a social conscience, a no-nonsense executive who runs a tight ship, and a caring Christian who proudly credits her faith and spiritual lifestyle for her undisputed success so far.
But she makes it clear that the road ahead is challenging in order to accomplish the goals she has in mind to rebrand and take the 103-year-old Black & Clark institution to the next level.
And along the way, Mitchell is leading a crusade to preserve the strength and existence of independent, black-owned funeral homes in the Dallas area and Texas.
EXPANDING TO FAR NORTH DALLAS
Part of her crusade involves opening a new market for an independent, black-owned funeral Home in far North Dallas. In the spring of 2017, Mitchell quietly opened Black & Clark Chapel at 14119 Montfort Dr., not far from the Galleria shopping mall, and plans a grand opening around the spring of 2018.
The funeral chapel is a new extension of the main funeral home about 20 miles away at 2517 E. Illinois Ave. in southwest Dallas’ Oak Cliff community. The funeral chapel occupies a building that once was an edifice for a historic African-American church in far North Dallas — Christian Chapel CME/White Rock Chapel Methodist Church – that was founded a year before Emancipation.