John Hope Bryant
Founder, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer
Author of Inc. Magazine-CEOREAD business bestseller LOVE LEADERSHIP: The New Way to Lead in a Fear-Based World (Jossey-Bass), Mr. Bryant is the only African-American bestselling business author in America.
A member of the founding class of the Young Global Leader for the World Economic Forum, an Oprah’s Angel Network award recipient, a TIME Magazine 50 (Leaders) for the Future (94′), John Hope Bryant is a social entrepreneur and businessman, the founder, chairman and chief executive officer of Operation HOPE, advisor to the last three sitting U.S. presidents and recognized by the last 5 U.S. presidents. Bryant is a noted thought leader, author, public speaker, and an innovator in the business of empowerment, writing regularly for the Huffington Post.
Mr. Bryant serves U.S. President Barack Obama as Chairman of the Subcommittee on the Underserved and Community Empowerment for the President’s Advisory Council on Financial Capability. Prior to that Mr. Bryant served U.S. President George W. Bush as vice chairman of the U.S. President’s Advisory Council on Financial Council, and chairman of the Council Committee on the Underserved. For President Obama, Mr. Bryant focuses primarily on the establishment of local financial literacy councils for cities, counties and states.
Raised in Compton and South Central Los Angeles, California and homeless for 6-months of his life by age 18, John Hope Bryant has traveled throughout North and South America, Africa, Asia, the Middle East, and Europe tirelessly promoting the virtues of hope, self-esteem, love leadership, dignity, empowerment and opportunity for the under-served.
Operation HOPE, America’s first non-profit social investment banking organization founded immediately following the Rodney King Riots of 1992 in South Central Los Angeles, now operates in more than 270 U.S. communities and South Africa, having served more than 1.5 million individuals, has more than 18,000 HOPE Corps volunteers, more than 5,000 partners from government, community (including faith) and the private sector, has raised more than $600 million and helped to restructure another $450 million in subprime mortgages to empower the poor, for a total of approximately $1 billion in economic activity for the under-served.
Former U.S. President Bill Clinton described Mr. Bryant in his recent bestselling book GIVING saying, “John Bryant is a 41 year-old whirlwind of ideas and action. Lean, intense, focused, and completely positive in his belief in the potential of poor people to prosper, with ‘a hand up and not a hand out.” A national community leader cited by the past five sitting U.S. presidents for his work to empower low-wealth communities across America, John Hope Bryant is one of the most authoritative and compelling advocates for poverty eradication in America today.
John Hope Bryant has served on several corporate boards, serves as a member of the NYSE Euronext Financial Literacy Advisory Committee, the advisory board for the Gallup Government Leadership Academy, the advisory board for the Kaplan University Business School, is a former UN goodwill ambassador to the U.S., a partner with former U.S. President Clinton and his foundation teaching financial literacy, and working with HOPE global spokesman Ambassador Andrew Young, is bridging civil rights to silver rights. Mr. Bryant is author of top 10 U.S. business bestseller for 2010, LOVE LEADERSHIP and BANKING ON OUR FUTURE, a book on youth and family financial literacy.
John Hope Bryant has received more than 400 awards and citations for his work to empower low-wealth communities including the Use Your Life Award by Oprah Winfrey, and named a “Community Hero” by People Magazine on the 10th anniversary of the worst urban civil unrest in U.S. history. In December, 1994, Mr. Bryant was selected by TIME Magazine for their “America’s 50 Most Promising Leaders of the Future” cover story. In 2010, Mr. Bryant received the Andrew Goodman Hidden Heroes Award, in honor of slain civil rights leader Andrew Goodwin.
In early 2008, Bryant’s silver rights advocacy and the work of Operation HOPE inspired then President Bush to make financial literacy the official policy of the U.S. federal government by Executive Order for the first time in U.S. history.
Bryant’s initial President’s Council leadership resulted in the creation of the U.S. SBA Office of Entrepreneurial Education, a landmark U.S. Treasury Department issued report on the future of financial literacy and responsible sub-prime lending, and later even inspired national financial literacy legislative bills, including a companion bill from U.S. Senator Daniel Akaka (D-HI) and U.S. Congresswoman Sheila Jackson-Lee (D-TX).
On February 1st, 2009, in the backdrop of the worst global economic crisis of a generation, Mr. Bryant was chosen to speak at the closing session for the Annual Meeting of the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, joining Archbishop-Emeritus Desmond Tutu, Professor Klaus Schwab, founder and chairman of the World Economic Forum, as well as fellow Global Dignity co-founders, His Royal Highness Crown Prince Haakon of Norway and Professor Pekka Himanen of Finland, on the subject of “dignity for all.”
Operation HOPE is presently building a historic HOPE Financial Dignity Center at Ebenezer Church and inside the historic King Center complex, in honor of Martin Luther King, Sr. (Daddy King). The HOPE Center, Ebenezer is a private/public partnership led by a $5 million commitment from members of the FINANCIAL SERVICES ROUNDTABLE.
Mr. Bryant has received an Honorary Doctorate Degree of Human Letters from Paul Quinn College of Dallas, Texas, and in April, 2008, Bryant completed the Harvard University, John K. Kennedy School of Government-Global Public Policy and Leadership for the 21st Century Program, as a Young Global Leaders. Mr. Bryant has received the National Community Service Award from Spelman College and Livingstone College, and in 2011, Bryant received the CUNY/Queens College President’s Award, which is their highest honor. The USC School of Social Work annually awards a USC John Bryant Scholarship to a deserving student.
Mr. Bryant is co-founder of Global Dignity, a member of the Clinton Global Initiative, is the founding curator of the Forum of Global Shapers, Atlanta Hub (an organ of the World Economic Forum, Geneva, Switzerland), a member of 100 Black Men of Atlanta, and an active member of Ebenezer Church in Atlanta, Georgia.
John Hope Bryant was born on February 6, 1966, at Good Samaritan Hospital in Los Angeles, California, and resides in Atlanta, Georgia.