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FunTimes Magazine

Garry A. Johnson III

Garry Johnson graduated from the University of Delaware in 2018 with a Master’s Degree in Entrepreneurship & Design. Since then he’s designed several ventures, including founding Urbinvest, LLC., a startup aimed at creating access to capital for entrepreneurs. In addition, he’s currently working on another venture called Know Capp. His goal is to help provide access to entrepreneurship opportunities for underrepresented communities, specifically focusing on the innovation economy. Johnson has worked to mentor youth and support communities of color. He’s worked as a course instructor for Horn Entrepreneurship and was part of the NAACP’s inaugural NEXTGEN Leadership Program.

How did you figure out what your passion is?

I found my passion through exploration and trying lots of different things. I looked at my own experiences and how they related to others in my community. I traveled the country and learned that there are people all over with those same experiences as well. So, I started creating platforms and opportunities that addressed shared problems. What I learned is that I have a knack for helping others tap into their potential, spark their curiosity and creativity, and live a purposeful life.

My passion is in empowering others, and with my ambition and creativity, I’m able to do that in many ways. I don’t think anyone should be limited to having just one single passion, but they should rather live life to the fullest and find all of the things they love to do.

What has been the most rewarding part of your journey so far?

In college, I started an annual youth business pitch competition for young men of color in my community. Seeing the impact, it had on young people and their families meant everything to me. When you do good work and put good things out into the world, good things happen to you. My reward is seeing others succeed. I’m also comfortable in knowing that some things I’ve done so far are just seeds that are going to grow and blossom into something truly amazing in the future.

What else would you like to accomplish?

In February, I’m launching a startup accelerator program to train underrepresented entrepreneurs for success in the innovative economy. This will be the first of its kind in my community and I hope it inspires other communities to create their own programs as well. I look forward to empowering more founders who, when provided the access and resources, are going to change the world with their innovative ideas. I would love to be able to scale up my impact globally as well.

I’m all for creating access and opportunity, so I look forward to continuing to do that in many more creative ways.

What advice would you give to other young people beginning their career?

My advice to other young people is to not limit yourself in what you can be and what you can accomplish. Be creative, work on projects or businesses that mean something to you. If you don’t see a company with a job description you want to apply for, you don’t have to worry. Create your own. Now is the time to start living your dreams on your own terms. Don’t let the opinion of others box you into their own expectations. You are the master of your fate and the captain of your soul.

What does being a part of the African Diaspora mean to you?

Being a part of the African Diaspora is one of the most important parts of my identity. It means acknowledging your history, knowing what your ancestors have contributed to society, and building upon their legacy by blazing your own path. Knowing that we within the Diaspora are interconnected reassures me that I am not alone, that there are others around the world who share such a powerful history and have such a promising future.