Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Torry Labon

Name: Torry Labon

Age: 26

College: California State University Dominguez Hills

Major: Business Administration: Finance concentration

Grad Year: 2010

Master's Degree: Accounting

Grad Year: 2013 (December)

About Torry: My mother was addicted to crack from the time of my birth until I was about 16 years old, maybe even longer. I've never met nor have I ever known who my biological father was and I was raised by my grandmother. Though battling a drug addiction, my mother still managed to be around throughout my childhood. Dealing with my own family issues and living in South Central Los Angeles, I sought to find a way to progress and not be trapped by the ills of my surroundings. At an early age I discovered the importance of money management, which would later prove to be what I was most passionate about.

After graduating from Crenshaw High School in Los Angeles I chose to stay local to pursue higher education. I chose Cal State University Dominguez Hills because of its close proximity to my home. Just as I enrolled in the fall of 2003 I was hospitalized which forced me to withdraw from classes my Freshman year. I picked back up on my studies in the fall of 2004, at which point I was a math major. In 2006 I became interested in Real Estate so I took 2 years off of school to pursue a career in real estate. After the collapse of the housing market I went back to school in 2008 to pursue a degree that was more fitting to my interest, which was Finance. In 2010 I completed the requirements for my bachelors degree in Finance.

While studying for my degree in Finance I found that I had become as passionate about people as I had been all my life about numbers. With that said I began to find different ways to give to those who were in need. In 2011 myself and one of my good friends, Jarred Wilkins, began feeding the homeless at downtown Los Angeles’ Skid Row. During the year we had four events there called “Help Us Serve Us” where we were able to feed nearly 1,000 people.

Growing up and being passionate about sports and finding out the importance of higher education, I started a company on December 21st 2011 called The Athletic Corner. At The Athletic Corner we specialize in custom Letterman Jackets, Varsity Sweaters, Chenille Patches, and Fitness apparel. Every sale that is made by The Athletic Corner a portion of the proceeds are given to The Athletic Corner Scholarship Fund. The purpose of the TAC Scholarship Fund is to provide financial assistance to graduating High School seniors who are both needing and deserving. This past December we hosted a #31DaysOfFitness Challenge in which we challenged our followers on twitter to stay fit and help us raise money for scholarships. Far too often we hear of kids not pursuing higher education because they can’t afford it. With these two companies I plan on changing that one, scholarship at a time!

What is your life's mission?

My life's mission is to bring financial literacy to those in the inner city who don't have access to and/or know about how to manage their finances. Philanthropy is also one of my goals in life. I want to make more money to be able to give more money!

What does being a black man mean to you?

The way that I feel about being black is similar to how many felt during the late 50's & 60's. In those times Black people forged bonds with one another on more than just the family level, primarily due to the fact that oppression was so overt. During those times we all shared at least one thing in common, whether you were poverty stricken or from the middle class, being oppressed. Over time as conditions became better the sense of community and the need to care for one another turned into the crabs in a bucket mentality. So being a black man means being a man of strength, not in stature but will! Being a family man and most importantly being a community leader!

"Dealing with my own family issues and living in South Central Los Angeles, I sought to find a way to progress and not be trapped by the ills of my surroundings"

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