At Leaders of the Free World we are passionate about the transformative power of international travel. To that end, we are highlighting the stories of several young, Black men whose international experience had lasting impact on their lives. In some cases, these experiences spurred them to make a difference in their communities.
Our first story is from Steven Hughes, Founder and Chief Financial Mentor of Know Money, Incorporated.
Steven got the opportunity to travel just over this past year spending 6 days in Geneva, Switzerland at a conference. What struck him the most? “I met 450 young leaders from 160 countries with diverse experiences, backgrounds and professions. Each were brilliant in their own right and it affirmed some things for me. ”
As a young, Black man from the United States, meeting so many people from so many countries was enlightening.
“The opportunity to see other people of color from different countries across the globe excelling at their craft was inspiring and motivating. The media in the United States is tirelessly negative when it portrays the young black man or woman. Getting away from that and falling into many positive experiences has changed my life forever.”
Steven has moved on to continue work on his own project, Know Money, Inc. to help teach financial literacy and entrepreneurship to youth and young adults across the state of South Carolina. Steven credits his experience for pushing him forward in this endeavor. "I met so many awesome people doing great things and I thought, 'I belong here. I should be doing this." He has also been bitten by the travel bug with plans to travel to Ghana, Tanzania, and Jamaica in the next year.
Steven is a first-generation Jamaican-American and native of Columbia, SC. After making countless financial mistakes in college and rebounding from them, he has developed a passion in teaching others about financial education and entrepreneurship. For the past six years, Steven has worked with colleges, universities, organizations and companies to educate their members on reaching their financial, personal and professional goals.