My Father’s Shadow



A parent’s success, fame, and achievement can be a complicated legacy for the next generation. Author Christina Lewis Halpern lost her father, Reginald F. Lewis, the famed entrepreneur and, at the time of his death, the richest black man in America. In this conversation, Christina shares her struggles and ultimate triumphs, as well as how philanthropy helped her forge a powerful identity of her own.

Christina discusses her e-book, Lonely at the Top, revealing the anxiety, fear of failure, and self-consciousness that she experienced while trying to live up to her father’s legacy as “the Jackie Robinson of American business.” His legacy influenced her to become a ‘philanthropreneur’ and founder of All Star Code, a not-for-profit education organization dedicated to closing the systematic opportunity gap between young men of color and the tech sector.

About Christina Lewis Halpern:

Christina is a self-described idealist. She is a writer, social entrepreneur, philanthropist, and investor, as well as the founder and Executive Director of All Star Code.

In 2014, the White House honored Christina as a Champion of Change for STEM Access. She is also a Jet Magazine “top 40 under 40,” and The Root’s “17 women in STEM you should know.” She is chair of the Finance and Investment Committee of the Reginald F. Lewis Foundation and has led million-dollar fundraising campaigns for her alma mater, Harvard College. Prior to founding All Star Code, Christina was an award-winning journalist, serving five years as a staff writer for the Wall Street Journal. Her work has been profiled in Fortune, Fast Company, Domino, and Vanity Fair.