Earl G. Graves Sr., an entrepreneur who fostered success in the African-American business community by founding the magazine Black Enterprise and writing the book “How to Succeed in Business Without Being White,” died on Monday at a care facility in White Plains, N.Y. He was 85.

His son, Earl G. Graves Jr., Black Enterprise’s current chief executive, said the cause was complications of Alzheimer’s disease.

Mr. Graves created Black Enterprise in 1970 with a $175,000 loan and the backing of advertisers he courted himself. The magazine was designed to appeal to newly ascendant African-American professionals, to encourage young people to become entrepreneurs in their own right, and to make black executives a more recognizable part of American corporate culture.

The idea of targeting the black business community was novel, but Mr. Graves pitched it with confidence befitting the multimillionaire publisher and businessman he would become.

In 1997 Mr. Graves published “How to Succeed in Business Without Being White: Straight Talk on Making it in America,” which he wrote with Wes Smith. The book, a New York Times best seller, included concrete lessons on networking, maximizing career opportunities and building wealth gleaned from Mr. Graves’s lifetime of entrepreneurship. It also emphasized that Mr. Graves saw the goal as an equal chance at success rather than special treatment.

“The white-dominated business world needs to understand that we don’t want charity,” he wrote. “We want to do business. We don’t want guaranteed success. We want the opportunity to earn it.”

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