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RK Junior LLC Hosts First Annual Namaste Gala


RK Junior LLC Hosts First Annual Namaste Gala

When Ron Kelley Jr. launched RK Junior Development Group in 2011, his mission was to create one of the most renowned luxury custom home building companies in Middle Tennessee, foster a culture of philanthropy, and give back to the community. In Ron’s own words:

“I was born in Nashville in 1986, I’ve lived here all my life, so I knew Nashville before it was NASHVILLE. This city and the community within it supported me through my youth and made me the man I am today. That’s why I’m committed to giving back to the community that took care of me for so many years.”

The Four Horsemen Foundation; A Commitment to Giving Back

In 2022, Ron and three other African American luxury home builders and developers joined forces to form the Four Horsemen Foundation, a philanthropic group dedicated to supporting disadvantaged communities in Nashville through monetary support and direct action. The Foundation consists of Ron Kelley, Jr. of RK Junior Development Group, Jimmie Johnson of Landon Development, John Swift of Province Builders, and Randy Arnold of Arnold Homes. To launch their philanthropic work, the group committed to building one home per year and donating it to a family in need. Their goal is to build these homes in each of their birthplaces; including Nashville, Birmingham, Detroit, and West Tennessee.

Speaking to a guest list of over 400 individuals at a formal black tie event, the Four Horsemen announced their philanthropic partnership while hosting the first annual Namaste Gala on Sunday, October 30th, 2022, at the Schermerhorn Symphony Center in Downtown Nashville. Following the announcement, the four men invited business leaders to support the Foundation in their many efforts to give back to the community.

The Namaste Gala; A Call to Action for Nashville Minority Business Leaders

When the Gaines family lost their Nashville home to a fire, Ron and his partners built a new home for them, donating their labor and materials to ensure the family had a roof over their heads. That project kicked off the powerful collaboration between four of Nashville’s best home builders. The Foundation now manages, funds, and executes the development of one home for needy families per year, in addition to financially supporting community nonprofits like Blessed Revelations and Warner Elementary’s student support program.

To recognize the community work of the Four Horsemen Foundation, Nashville’s Mayor John Cooper attended the Namaste Gala. He gave Kelley Jr., Johnson, Swift, and Arnold each an Honorary Recognition award for their service to the city.

Michelle Roberts from CBS News MC-ed the event, while the artist Mapy the Violinist provided entertainment. Magic Johnson, a retired NBA Hall of Famer and winner of five NBA championships and three MVP awards, appeared for a keynote address. Johnson earned a standing ovation for his powerful speech on entrepreneurship and the importance of minority business leaders giving back to their communities.

In describing the Namaste Gala, Ron said:

“When John, Randy, Jimmie and I came together to host The Namaste Gala, we wanted to create an evening that highlighted the continued excellence of minorities within the Nashville business community. The purpose of the Gala was to encourage and help develop strategic alliances across all sectors of the Nashville business ecosystem, as well as increase support for philanthropic efforts, particularly those impacting our city’s underserved communities. The mission of the Four Horsemen Foundation is to inspire both young and emerging business leaders alike, by providing a forum that recognizes, honors, and celebrates contributions and achievements of African American professionals.”

Nashville’s Entrepreneurs Raised Tens of Thousands of Dollars for Local Nonprofits

During the Gala, the men hosted a fundraiser to raise money for the Four Horsemen Foundation’s upcoming projects. Such projects include support for families in need, at-risk groups, and local organizations like:

  • Blessed Revelations, which assists women and children who experience violence and domestic abuse. The group helps women and children find housing and employment and assists them in getting the children back in school. At the Gala, the Foundation announced its commitment to $25,000 in direct support of Blessed Revelations.
  • Warner Elementary, which manages a program that helps urban students obtain essential items, such as clothing, toiletries, and other necessities. The program also provides after-school activities to at-risk youths, keeping them off the street and allowing parents the time they need to focus on their careers. At the Gala, the Foundation announced its commitment to $25,000 in direct support of Warner Elementary.

During the fundraiser, Magic Johnson auctioned autographed merchandise and seats to Lakers basketball games, culminating in $40,000 raised for the Four Horsemen Foundation.

October’s Namaste Gala was the first of many. The Four Horsemen Foundation is only getting started, with plans to host the Namaste Gala every year to draw more support for affordable housing and direct community action. And Nashville is taking notice, too. The Nashville Business Journal listed the Four Horsemen in, “People to Watch in Nashville Business in 2023.”

Speaking about the deeper meaning behind the Four Horsemen Foundation and RK Junior’s philanthropic work, Ron said:

“I wanted RK Junior Development Group to be service oriented. I’m passionate about helping others, and I love my community. So many Nashville folks built me up and supported me while I grew up here, went to school here, got my first job here, and went into business here. Now I want to uplift and support my community. I love my city, and I know I can improve it through RK Junior’s advocacy, mentorship, volunteering, and financial support.”

To contact the Four Horsemen Foundation about supporting them or about requesting support for a community organization or nonprofit, fill out our convenient online contact form. For inquiries about custom home building in Nashville or Nashville luxury homes, request a Discovery Session by clicking the “Book A Discovery Session” button on our Contact Page.

Here’s to a 2023 where we give back to the communities that supported us,

-Ren Brabenec
RK Junior Staff Writer