Arlo Washington, who had been a barber for about 10 years, founded the literacy non-profit in 2008, the same year he opened the for-profit, Washington Barber College. “A barber is a community-based person, so as a barber, I was able to identify what was going on and saw the need for financial services,” said Washington, whose family roots in the Razorback state dates to the Emancipation era.
“I grew up in generational poverty and know the problems of accessing capital when you don’t understand credit and is not financially literate,” he continued. By 2014, People transformed into People Trust and started making small dollar loans to low income students and 2016 became a CDFI."
People Trust's primary purpose is to promote community development by providing credit counseling services, financial support and literacy for communities that would otherwise not receive said Opportunities. People Trust pledges to challenge what has become tradition in today's fluctuating socio-economical system. The goal is to Create avenues for an elevated understanding of financial stability by stimulating and motivating an untapped region of the economy and the communities in which they dwell.
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[00:00:09] GM: Welcome to Up in Your Business with Kerry McCoy. A production of flagandbanner.com. Through storytelling and conversational interviews, this weekly radio show and podcast offers listeners an insider's view into the commonalities of successful people and the ups and downs of risk-taking. Connect with Kerry through her candid, funny, informative and always encouraging weekly blog. And now it's time for Kerry McCoy to get all up in your business.
[00:00:35] KM: My guest today is a self-made man with a Cinderella story. Throw out all the misconceptions about stoic bankers, because he ain't nothing like the bankers I've ever met. Yes, he looks good in a suit. But his success story begins in the beauty parlor. Meet Mr. Arlo Washington, Founder, CEO and President of People Trust Loan Fund, a nonprofit that helps small businesses in low-income communities.
Arlo grew up watching his mother a beautician service her community not just by washing, cutting and braiding hair, but also by listening, mentoring, and supporting her clients in an emotional way that was important. Arlo was drawn to the profession. After a mere two years in the business of barbering, he launched his own shop, grew the ongoing concern to four locations employing 27 people. Never want to rest on his laurels, young Arlo founded Washington Barber College, where his listening skills paid off in a monetary and caring way.
As an employer, Mr. Washington heard and learned firsthand what the term unbanked meant, and how the lack of financial literacy and access to affordable credit was crippling to many impoverished people in the neighborhoods he grew up in. With the help of the Winthrop Rockefeller Foundation, Mr. Washington founded the People Trust Loan Fund. To date, he has awarded over 2000 small loans for, of course, business startups, but also for non-traditional help, things you might take for granted like transportation, childcare, housing and emergency expenses.
It is my pleasure to welcome to the title of the visionary and caring self-made financier and entrepreneur, Mr. Arlo, Washington.
[00:02:30] AW: Thank you. Thank you. Thanks for having me.
[00:02:33] KM: I got to tell our listeners how I know you. And I just met you. It's nice to meet you.
[00:02:37] AW: Likewise.
[00:02:38] KM: But I got to tell our listeners that my husband, you bought a flagpole for your bank.
[00:02:41] AW: Absolutely.
[00:02:41] KM: Is it a bank?
[00:02:42] AW: It is. Well, you know what? It's not a bank. It's a loan fund. We are a community development financial institution. We are a financial institution. We look like a bank. But we don't take deposits. That makes the difference between a bank and loan fund. And loan funds were created in direct response to the community, Civil Rights Act of 1964 or ‘77. And I was born in ‘77 actually. But out of that there was CRA, which is Community Reinvestment Act. And then Bill Clinton and Al Gore in 1994 established the Reigle Community Development Act, which established the CDFI Fund, which certifies CDFIs nationwide.
[00:03:32] KM: And CDFI stands for?
[00:03:34] AW: Community Development Financial Institution. That's how – Because we do loans, and we provide financial services, then people immediately associate community development financial institution with a traditional bank.
[00:03:52] KM: Yeah, they love you in there. But you're not traditional.
[00:03:53] AW: No, no, no.
[00:03:54] KM: So, I met you – Or actually, I've come to meet you because you met my husband because you bought a flagpole for your financial institution. And when he came home, he just could not quit bragging about you and what a nice guy. And then you've gotten to know each other.
[00:04:06] AW: Really? Wow! Yeah, we have. Grady? Absolutely.
[00:04:07] KM: Y’all have gotten to know each other.
[00:04:09] AW: Yeah, love Grady.
[00:04:09] KM: Thank you. He said, “I think you really need to interview Arlo.” Let's talk about your life and growing up. You grew up in Highland Court, North Little Rock?
[00:04:18] AW: Well, you know, Highland Court actually is on 12th Street, which is in 12th Street Core. Kind of close to the Central High School area. Now, in –
[00:04:27] KM: Is it close to the zoo?
[00:04:29] AW: Yeah, right across the street from where the War Memorial Stadium and the zoo.
[00:04:33] KM: Okay, that's Highland court.
[00:04:34] AW: Yeah, Highland Court. It’s Madison Heights now. And so, I lived there in my young. Grew up in that neighborhood when I was born. And a matter of fact, I was just driving through the other day and we passed a house. My grandmother had 16 children. And so, she had –
[00:04:50] KM: Are you Catholic? Or she just doesn't believe in – Or she doesn’t have access to birth control?
[00:04:54] AW: You know, this is back in the days when they were having baby factories. My mother had me when she was 16. And so, when she brought me home, my grandmother told it was too many people in the house. She dropped out of school. She's in 10th grade. Thank God, she didn't abort me. But she dropped out of school in 10th grade. And my grandmother told her she would have to take care of her son now. And so, she got her an apartment, and it was in Highland Court. It was right there on – It’s right on 12th Street. It's right around the corner from where my grandmother lived. She was on Pine Street. It’s 16th and Pine, If I remember correctly. I was a baby. But anyways, I grew up there.
[00:05:42] KM: Describe your neighborhood.
[00:05:44] AW: My neighborhood was a housing, low-income housing project.
[00:05:46] KM: Talk about generational poverty. You talk a lot about that.
[00:05:49] AW: Generational poverty? Yeah, yeah, yeah. Generational poverty is, of course, poverty that’s passed down from generation to generation. It’s a mentality. It's a mentality. Yeah, it's a mentality that's passed down from generation to generation. The reason the Civil Rights Act came about was sort of people get equal rights with finances, financial products, services, things of that nature, affordable housing. And that was just needing to be some laws in place to kind of help make sure that there was equity. And so, my family experienced generational poverty. I grew up in a single parent home. And I didn't know any different because that's all I knew. And as I got older and started to look around and start saying, “Hey, it looks different in my neighborhood,” versus if I go to where – for example, where my dad lived. I had two great parents. They were never married. But two good people, and they're both deceased today.
[00:06:51] KM: Where'd your dad live?
[00:06:52] AW: Well, he lived off in John Barrow community. Now it looked different. Back then it looked a lot different than if I was on 12th Street in Highland Court. We also live – we moved around quite a bit. I lived all over Central Arkansas. We lived in the south end and we lived in the east end, you know?
[00:07:13] KM: Your mother's profession?
[00:07:16] AW: Her profession, she was a professional student for a while. But she started off doing phlebotomy. After she got out –
[00:07:22] KM: What’s that?
[00:07:22] AW: Well, drawing blood at St. Vincent. She was really in St. Vincent drawing blood.
[00:07:24] KM: Oh, really? I thought she a beautician?
[00:07:26] AW: Well, she braided as a side hustle. She had a side hustle. And she braided hair. The neighborhood, family members would all come to her and she would braid their hairs.
[00:07:37] KM: What was it about that you liked?
[00:07:38] AW: Well, I just like the personal touch. It was always great conversations. And if there were some issues that needed to be somebody to vent and talk, then she would be an ear to listen to them or a shoulder to cry on.
And because it took about – the type braid she did will take about anywhere from six to eight hours to do. So, you’d be there sitting there getting braids and talking and sharing relationship stories or maybe hardships they were having with their finances or housing arrangement, things of that nature. So, I got a chance to see a lot of that.
[00:08:18] KM: She died early, didn't she? How old were you?
[00:08:19] AW: She died – I was 17 when my mother passed away. And it was two years, two and a half years after she graduated from Philander Smith College. She was diagnosed with cervical cancer. And they didn't have all the technology that they have today with that. And as a matter of fact,
[inaudible 00:08:37] was just being started whenever she was going through that. And so, she passed away. Of course, a part of my heart ripped out because I was a single child for nine years. And then I had my sister, Joy, which is 11, and then my sister, Tara –
[00:08:53] KM: Who took care of them?
[00:08:55] AW: My aunt. My aunt. When my mother passed away, my aunt took care of them.
[00:08:58] KM: Did you go live with your aunt?
[00:08:58] AW: No. I didn't. I was very independent and really set on making a success and doing something with my life so I could –
[00:09:09] KM: Did you spend a lot of time in church?
[00:09:11] AW: I did.
[00:09:11] KM: Did your mother spent a lot of time in church?
[00:09:12] AW: She did. She did. She taught me to pray at early age.
[00:09:16] KM: I read something where you said when your mother's – you were asking her why she did hair?
[00:09:19] AW: Yeah.
[00:09:21] KM: And she said, “When God blesses you, you bless others.”
[00:09:24] AW: Yeah, that's right. Yeah, absolutely right.
[00:09:25] KM: Where did you go to college? Or did you?
[00:09:27] AW: Well, I went to college for a year out of high school to UAPB, University of Arkansas Pine Bluff. And then I went there for a semester. And then I figured I'd come close to home. I went to UALR for a little while. And then I decided that I wanted to move to New York and become a supermodel.
[00:09:46] KM: What?
[00:09:46] AW: Yeah, yeah, yeah. Yeah, I did. I did.
[00:09:47] KM: I told you he’s got game.
[00:09:49] GM: The dream.
[00:09:50] AW: Yeah, right? I did. I left. I was working at LensCrafters on Park Plaza Mall. Transfer my job to the Mall of Manhattan. And I had an old Mustang, a ‘68 Mustang. I sold it for about 1300 bucks. Took the thousand dollars and moved to New York. And I rented the room from my brother's girlfriend's aunt. And 75 bucks a week.
[00:10:12] KM: And she let you?
[00:10:14] AW: Yeah, she let me. She was an older lady. And very nice. And I learned a lot from her. I went to Bushwick in Brooklyn, Brooklyn, New York. And it was a big shellshock.
[00:10:23] KM: Why did you come home?
[00:10:25] AW: Well, I wanted to come home because, again, my mother passed when I was 17. And she asked me what he wants to do with my life? And I told her I want to be a coach because I had dreams of making it to the NBA as well. But I didn't get tall enough, and I started late. So, I couldn't – I didn't make the cut.
[00:10:43] KM: Tell the story about when you started working for Mr. Roy.
[00:10:46] AW: Mr. Roy. Okay. So, Roy’al Barbershop. Roy’als Barbershop. When I was a kid, I used to go to Roy’als barber shop, which was on – What that Broadway? It was on Broadway Street. And I used to go in there and sweep hair to earn a haircut. You know what I mean? Because we couldn't afford to get haircuts every week. But I will go over there, because my cousin, he would go all the time to get his hair cut. I just would tag along. And when I go there, I’d sweep up around the shop to earn enough to get me a haircut as well. And so, Mr. Roy was generous and allow me to be able to do that.
And I will sit there all day. It was very fun to hear Mr. Roy crack jokes. And he was a very colorful guy. And he always put out a big wad of money whenever he was giving people change. And I said, “Man! Mr. Roy.” And he wore a doctor's jacket. I said, “Man, this barber thing is pretty, pretty, pretty exciting.” I’m just hearing stories, community members sharing and things of that nature always piqued my interest.
[00:11:41] KM: Is that what you decided?
[00:11:44] AW: Well, decided when I was sitting there in the barbershop waiting on a haircut. And I had waited all day long. And I was up next. And the gentleman came through the door in a rush. And he said he would pay for my haircut. And he would give me $30 on top of it. Because he needed to get to where –
[00:12:02] KM: If I’d let him take my spot. Of course, I let him take the spot. You know? It changed my life, because I’d never forget it. Because at the time I was like, “Man! 30 bucks, it was lots of money.” And so, he gave me the 30 bucks. He went in front of me and I ended up – But at that point, I said, barbering is the way I want to go.
[00:12:21] KM: But you went off to New York before you did it.
[00:12:25] AW: I did. I did. I went to New York before I did it because I didn't know anything about barber colleges at the time. I didn't know that there was a barber school that you could go to. I just thought I didn't know how you did it. But then I was intrigued with the modeling profession. And I wanted to be an overnight success. So, I figured I had to go to where that was at. And that was in New York. And I didn't get a chance to do some modeling. But working at LensCrafters because I transferred my job there, I couldn't go to go season castings. And so, I was like, “Man, I didn't really come here to just do this.” I want to get into the field, the modeling field and really go ahead and get it going.”
And so, I ended up coming back home to Arkansas to get my barber license. Found out about New Tyler Barber College where I would go to school. And went there for a year with it on my mind to go back to New York to continue pursuing a modeling career. And I would just use barbering to support me as I was doing that.
[00:13:29] KM: So, you are 19.
[00:13:30] AW: I'm 19 years old.
[00:13:32] KM: You're cutting hair.
[00:13:32] AW: I'm cutting hair.
[00:13:34] KM: And you’d say, “Well, I think I'll just start my own barbershop.” How did that happen?
[00:13:40] AW: Well, when that happened is I ended up coming back home. Because I was in New York. And I made it through – I went through some tough times. Experienced being homeless for about three weeks, three, four weeks. Sleeping in the barber shop and things of that nature. Now, it did happen because when I came back to Arkansas, my room was already gone. When I came back and moved my aunt, she lived in a 12 Street community as well. And we're at 12th Street Core. And she had a backroom. I lived with her for about maybe three months, long enough for me to get into barber shop and get some clientele and get on my feet.
And I had a friend of mine which had a flawless hair studio. Gio Clark had a barber shop. We grew up together. I went to his barber shop. And I was his barber. So, he was like, “Hey, you should come and work at my shop.” Well, his shop was right there – It's a laundromat now in 12th Street. It was right there and that laundromat. And I had learned so much when I was in New York. How to use a straight razor and things of that nature. And a lot of techniques that wasn't happening here.
And so, when I introduced those skill sets here in this market, it really blew up and made a name for myself really quickly. And two years later I was like I had decided to go back to casting. I told my mom I was going to be a coach. I need to go and get that. And then when you're young, you know, you're trying to find your way in, really build a foundation for yourself. So, you're trying things.
[00:15:10] KM: You’ve tried a lot. Coaching, modeling, barbering. Yeah. Aha.
[00:15:15] AW: Yeah, right. Serial entrepreneur.
[00:15:17] GM: All in the course of like two years. Yeah.
[00:15:19] AW: Yeah.
[00:15:21] KM: Slow down, Arlo. Slow down.
[00:15:23] AW: I enrolled in UALR. And didn't know anything about starting a business and have a good savings account.
[00:15:29] KM: Oh, now, college.
[00:15:30] AW: Yeah, again. Tried it again. Didn't have a big savings account, anything. Didn't know anything. I was unbanked at the time.
[00:15:37] KM: I love that part.
[00:15:39] AW: And so, they have this thing, financial aid, when you're in school. And you can get a Pell Grant. You can get a student loan. That's the only loan that I knew, because that's all I had seen my mom get in school was direct loans through her college. I'm thinking that's the only place you go for a loan. I didn’t think about going to a bank for a loan. And my mother was unbanked as well. She kept her money under her mattress. And so, that's how I understand unbanked, that mentality.
[00:16:08] KM: Did you make that up? That word? Unbanked?
[00:16:11] AW: No, I didn't make it.
[00:16:11] KM: Because when I’m read –
[00:16:13] GM: I was going to say, I have never heard that before.
[00:16:15] KM: That's because we don't have – we are banked. If you were unbanked and you lived where Arlo lived, you would know that word. When I'm reading about Arlo, he keeps talking about the unbanked. And I'm like, “We got to tell people what that means.”
[00:16:28] GM: Yeah.
[00:16:29] AW: Yeah, yeah. So, unbanked. Unbanked means –
[00:16:31] KM: It means you don't have you money in a bank.
[00:16:33] AW: You don't have your money in the bank.
[00:16:34] KM: You don't even know how to use a bank.
[00:16:36] AW: You don’t even know how to use the bank. You don't even think about –
[00:16:37] KM: It’s a cash life.
[00:16:38] AW: Exactly. Exactly. That's a whole different lifestyle, you know? And it actually costs more to be unbanked than it does to be banked.
[00:16:47] KM: Sure.
[00:16:47] AW: Yeah. Because we did a study where we went into banks and we went to try open up accounts. Went to grocery stores to try and get a money order. Just simple financial transactions.
[00:17:02] KM: It’s expensive.
[00:17:03] AW: Expensive. And not only that. If you think about the gas prices of driving around to different places.
[00:17:09] KM: And time is money.
[00:17:09] AW: The long lines when you're waiting.
[00:17:12] KM: Time is money and fees. Absolutely.
[00:17:12] AW: All of it. Absolutely. Absolutely. I got a student loan. 1750. I still remember.
[00:17:19] KM: I got to interrupt here. What is your special technique that you do with the razors?
[00:17:22] AW: Oh, the razor?
[00:17:22] KM: Aha. What's the special techniques you brought back here –
[00:17:25] AW: Yeah. So, the hair line, the razor line. The razor line. You can take a razor to get a hot lather shave with it. You can shave the ball head. Or you can get a line. And so just really a real defined. Real defined. Defined line. When you can see, it's like somebody drew it on your head.
[00:17:39] KM: That you? You started that?
[00:17:41] AW: Yeah, I did. I did. I did.
[00:17:42] KM: I know, Tim started that, a friend of mine. I know exactly what you're talking about. Okay. Go ahead.
[00:17:47] AW: And so, now, I didn't patent out anything.
[00:17:52] KM: But that’s the highest compliments to be copied.
[00:17:54] AW: Yeah, yeah. So, that’s a good thing. I'm glad that I could be a good influence.
[00:17:59] KM: Okay. So, now you're at school. Borrowing money from school.
[00:18:01] AW: Well, actually, I borrow money from – I got a student direct loan. I use that money. I'm walking down the sidewalk, and I'm like, “Man, you know, this is more money than I had at one time. I need to do something with this.” If I want to build a foundation, then I need to do something with this. I need to invest it some kind of way.
And I was thinking, “Well, I’m already cutting hair. I might as well just –” And one of my customers – you know, your customers are great. My customer told me, he said, “Hey.” He said, “You know, you got all this stuff. You’re doing all this stuff.” He said, “Why don't you just expand what you already doing? You already got clientele. You got me coming and getting my hair cut. You got all these folks loving your haircuts. Why don't you just expand what you're doing?” And I said, “Well –” And then a light bulb went off. And I'm like, “Well, that's what I'll do.” And expanding is from working at a barber shop to now starting your own barber shop and employing others.
[00:18:53] KM: So, you went to City Hall and got a permit?
[00:18:55] AW: I went to City Hall. I got a permit. Learned. Went to that whole process. Learned about getting a business license and learn about going to Secretary of State, getting incorporated and things of that nature. And I was just kind of just –
[00:19:03] KM: And then found a location.
[00:19:04] AW: Found a location. I could afford a location. I took the $1,700 and I was able to put 450 bucks down on a deposit at the time. That was 2000. In 2000. We're in 2022 now.
[00:19:17] KM: How'd you buy that barber chair?
[00:19:19] AW: Well, somebody loaned me the barber chair. I had a guy that I know somebody that knows somebody. And then they loaned me. They knew I was opening up a barber shop. So, they said, “Hey, I'll loan you to barber chair. Just pay me when you make money.”
[00:19:29] KM: What about the wash sink?
[00:19:30] AW: The shampoo bowls. I bought it on secondary markets for 50 bucks.
[00:19:36] KM: How people were with your store when you opened the door?
[00:19:37] AW: Just me.
[00:19:39] KM: And then you grew it to four locations.
[00:19:41] AW: Grew it to four locations.
[00:19:43] KM: How long did that take?
[00:19:45] AW: Over a two-year period.
[00:19:46] KM: You grew to four locations over a two-year period?
[00:19:48] AW: Mm-hmm. Maybe there. Let’s say three years.
[00:19:52] GM: So, you took the loan that this government gave you for school?
[00:19:55] AW: Yes.
[00:19:55] GM: And that was okay? They never followed up on you on –
[00:19:58] AW: Well, the thing is, you know, it's for educational purposes. And that the time, you know – But they applied whatever I had to my tuition, but then the overage is for your living expense. And my living expense was for me to survive. You know what I mean? I mean, if I need to go Kroger and pay it all up at the grocery store, I could invest it in the business and eat for a lifetime.
[00:20:20] KM: Yeah, that's what us entrepreneur do.
[00:20:22] AW: I leveraged it.
[00:20:23] KM: You didn't take that and go out and get your nails done and –
[00:20:26] AW: And get a whole living room set.
[00:20:28] KM: And get a living room set.
[00:20:29] AW: Yeah, I didn’t do none of that.
[00:20:31] KM: I know people that do that.
[00:20:31] AW: No. I needed to stretch it.
[00:20:34] KM: No, I'm not going to mention any names.
[00:20:36] AW: Don’t do it. Please don’t.
[00:20:39] KM: So, you know, when I think about barbers, and the community and how important they are to the black community. And do you think it's a safe place for black men to talk about mental health?
[00:20:51] AW: Oh, absolutely. Absolutely. Because they have an opportunity to – If I cut your hair, you trust me. You know, you're not going to let anybody – I mean, look how pretty your hair is. You don't let anybody just do your hair. You probably have a stylist.
[00:21:05] KM: You are so right about that.
[00:21:06] GM: Yeah, we could go a whole extra 30 minutes of this interview just about that.
[00:21:09] AW: Yeah. Yeah. And you know, a good barber is like a needle in the haystack. When you find them, you hold on to them. Build that relationship. That profession is all about relationships. And so, yes, absolutely. Mental health is – I've provided counseling and therapy to thousands.
[00:21:26] KM: And so many of them – You get to pass on to people who have just been incarcerated. They've just gotten out. And they have that – What did you call it?
[00:21:36] AW: PTSD.
[00:21:38] KM: Yeah, PTSD, for sure, from being in jail. And then that legacy of hopelessness that comes from generations.
[00:21:48] AW: Generational poverty, the nature that they –
[00:21:50] KM: And you have to kind of lift them up, I would imagine.
[00:21:53] AW: Absolutely. Well, you take a little bit off on the outside to make them feel good on the inside.
[00:21:58] KM: Oh, I like that. All right, this is a great place to take a break. When we come back, we'll continue our conversation with Mr. Arlo Washington, Founder of Washington Barber College in Little Rock, Arkansas. We haven't even talked about that yet. And People's Trust Loan Fund, a nonprofit that helps small businesses in low-income communities. We'll be back right after the break.
[00:22:21] GM: You're listening to Up in Your Business with Kerry McCoy, a production of flagandbanner.com. Over 40 years ago with only $400, Kerry founded Arkansas Flag and Banner. During the last four decades, the business has grown and changed along with Kerry's experience and leadership knowledge. In 1995 she embraced the internet and rebranded her company as simply flagandbanner.com. In 2004, she became an early blogger. Since then, she has founded the nonprofit, friends of Dreamland ballroom. Began publishing her magazine, Brave. And in 2016 branched out into this very radio show, YouTube channel and podcast.
In 2020, Kerry McCoy enterprises acquired ourcornermarket.com, an online company specializing in American-made plaques, signage and memorials for over 20 years. And more recently, opened a satellite office in Miami, Florida. Telling American-made stories, selling American-made flags, the flagandbanner.com. Back to you, Kerry.
[00:23:24] KM: You're listening to Up in Your Business with me, Kerry McCoy. And I'm speaking today with Mr. Arlo, Washington, the People's Trust Loan Fund. A man with compassion and ambition for himself and for the low-income communities whence he grew up.
Arlo, I asked you before the thing. Where does it come from? You’re like, “What's come from?” It’s like that ambition. Where does it come from?
[00:23:48] AW: My mom. I mean, I saw her. I watched her sit up all night studying and had a goal on her mind to complete college. Get a degree in social work. And then I watched her go from receiving funding, monthly checks and food stamps from the Department of Human Services. To working at the Department of Human Services.
There was an article where it said, “A welfare mom works her way to the other side of the desk.” And in that article, it mentions me in the article. I was 16 at the time when they did the article. And so, watching all of that and seeing her go into her graduation, it gave me some motivation to shoot for the stars. You know, say, if you shoot for the – If you say shoot for the moon, you'll land among the stars.
[00:24:40] KM: Oh, that's nice.
[00:24:41] AW: I always aimed high and had a lot of hope.
[00:24:45] KM: You’re an inspiration to people who don't have a mother like that, I would think?
[00:24:45] AW: I'm sure. Because my mother was a mother to a lot of folks.
[00:24:52] KM: Well, is she?
[00:24:52] AW: Oh, yeah. She would pick up foster kids in the middle of the night and bring them to the house and you do their hair and take care of them. Just let them feel some love. But I watched that as well. The social work aspect of it really impacted me and really helped me to look at not just myself, but look at others as well.
[00:25:14] KM: When I think of two adjectives for you, I think of ambitious and compassionate. And those together are great.
[00:25:18] AW: Thank you.
[00:25:19] KM: You're welcome. So, let's talk about – Before the break, we talked about your two years, 18 and 19, where you had like 20 jobs. A lot going on. But now you're cutting hair. You started your own business. And all of a sudden, the idea for Washington Barber College comes about. Tell us how that happened.
[00:25:41] AW: Okay. In opening these barber shops, we had to staff these barber shops, right? Whenever students were graduating Barber College, you’re not having to show them how to use the razor like we use it because we wanted our product to be the same and we wanted everything – the name of the barbershop. We wanted everything to – It was Blessed Fades Barbershop at the time.
[00:25:59] KM: I thought it was Washington?
[00:26:01] AW: Well, Washington Barber College. The barber shop was Blessed Fades Barbershop.
[00:26:04] GM: Oh, I love that name.
[00:26:05] KM: Say it again?
[00:26:06] AW: Blessed Fades. Yeah, it was Blessed Fades. Because I'm blessed.
[00:26:09] GM: Yeah.
[00:26:10] KM: And it fades.
[00:26:12] AW: And it fades. Yes, Blessed Fades.
[00:26:14] KM: Oh, I get it. Okay. Go ahead.
[00:26:15] AW: Yeah. And so, we wanted that to be – we wanted everybody's – we trained. We had to spend time training and talking to them, teach them how to – technical assistance. I was providing technical assistance before I knew what technical assistance was, as well as financial education before I knew what financial education was just as a barbe though. How are you managing money? You know, hey, if you make 100 bucks, put back 50 bucks. So, that on your rainy days, when it's not real busy, you can go on your rainy-day fund and you don't have to worry about, “Hey, I didn't cut that many hairs that day.” You'd be able to be sustainable.
And so, we would teach the skills and just spend a lot of time. If they came through the door and they couldn't cut us good, then we would work with them and send them all the little kids. And so, you know –
[00:26:59] KM: It's more than just barber technique.
[00:27:01] AW: Yeah, yeah. That made them like, “Hey, we're training them. We may as well have a barber college and train them on the front end. So that we could train them and place them.” Because now we’re farming our own barbers.
[00:27:17] KM: So, where did you get the funding for that?
[00:27:20] AW: So, my landlord at the time, Mark Carter. He really believed in what I was doing. And he saw how I was really building the business and how clean I ran the business. And then there was a building that came available on 65th Street. And I've tried to go to the bank and get funding to purchase the building. Because the building was for sale. It wasn't for lease. It was for sale.
[00:27:40] KM: Oh, you’re going to jump all the way in.
[00:27:42] AW: yeah, yes, I was like, “Well, hey, but this building is great location. It has its own park and everything.” So, I told him about it. And he's a real estate investor. I knew he was a real estate investor. So, I said, “Hey, Mark.” I've been leasing from him ever since I started. And he was like – Well, he actually went and bought the building and then allowed me to buy it from him.
[00:28:04] KM: I love Mark.
[00:28:04] AW: Yeah, me too. Me too. Mark. Yeah, he –
[00:28:08] KM: You have two programs; the barber program, 1500 hours. And then the barber instructor program where you teach people to teach barbering.
[00:28:15] AW: Yes.
[00:28:17] KM: Is your Washington Barber College still functioning?
[00:28:20] AW: Sill still going 15 years strong.
[00:28:22] KM: Oh, good. How about your other shops?
[00:28:25] AW: No, they're not.
[00:28:26] KM: Any of them?
[00:28:27] AW: No, they're not. Well, we have one barber shop right now. It's Ivy League Barbershop. And that's located on 200 North Bowman Road across from – It’s right next door to Lazy Pete's, Instant Imprints,
[inaudible 00:28:38]. It’s in that shopping center.
[00:28:40] KM: So, if you want to become a barber today, you can go to Washington Barber College. But what are the requirements? You got to have a high school diploma?
[00:28:48] AW: Well, you have to have a high school diploma. High school diploma or GED. You have to have an ID card, social security card. You have to –
[00:28:59] KM: Do you provide financial aid?
[00:28:59] AW: We do. We offer financial aid to those who qualify. We've been offering financial aid since 2012.
[00:29:05] KM: How many people do you usually have enrolled at a time?
[00:29:08] AW: Anywhere – In a year, we run about 75 to 100 students through.
[00:29:12] KM: Really? And when I was reading about it and looked at your curriculum, it's more than just barber techniques. It's life skills.
[00:29:19] AW: Oh, absolutely. Absolutely.
[00:29:21] KM: Tell the story about how the man that came in and you gave him his first check.
[00:29:27] AW: Oh, yeah, yeah. We had a student – and this is what gave us the idea to do – because people trust was actually just a social organization, a nonprofit that was providing free haircuts to homeless individuals. Because the homeless individuals would give the students an opportunity to cut different textures of hair, black, white, straight, curly, coarse, fine, medium, all it. And so, that gave us a good diversity. And it also helped us students to do some community as well to see that there were people out there that were less fortunate. We would go and pick up these individuals from Jericho Way, River City, different homeless shelters. Bring them to the college, provide them with sack lunches, provide them with free haircuts and then take them back. And that helped out a lot.
And then we had a student offering financial aid. You have to provide them with financial education. Before they actually sign on the dotted line, you tell them what a loan is, and that they had to pay it back. It's going to manage the default rate. And so, we had a student come in, and he was re-entry. He's about 32, 33-years-old at the time. And he had a refund check, like I had, when I got the 1750 from ULR way back in the days. He had an overage. And so, we cut the check for the overage. And he asked us, “Okay, what do I do with this?”
[00:30:53] KM: Had a check with the name on it and he didn’t know what to do. 30-years-old.
[00:30:54] AW: His name on it. About 32, 33 at the time. Totally unbanked. Never been in a bank. Never dealt with a bank. And he was like, “What do I do with this?” And he was afraid to go in a bank. I had to go with him to the bank. Walk him in there. Introduce him to the bank teller. Help him open up his account. And from that point on, we were saying, “Hey, you know what? We don't want to produce barbers that go out and they're not able to be sustainable because they don't have the financial capacity to be able to grow their business.” And so, that's when we said we need really focus on financial education and making sure that they understand and have those tools. Because we noticed that there's just a huge need. Most of the students, they qualify for financial aid, had low-income, or come from generational poverty, things of that nature. So, that opened the door up to us providing financial services.
[00:31:51] KM: When did the idea to open up the People's Trust Loan start? Is this when it happened?
[00:31:58] AW: In 2014, in 2014, one of my administrators, Artina Blackman and myself, we decided – we formed a board. We formed a board. We changed the bylaws to a financial institution to provide financial services. So, we went from an organization providing free haircuts and sack lunches to a financial institution in 2014.
Like I said, we started at that point tracking the loans that we're doing. 2009. We didn't know in 2009. Here's the deal. 2009, Arkansas became a credit desert because payday lending was prohibited. The law – the state put a usury rate cap on a 17%. At the time, there were 234 brick and mortar payday lenders operating within the state. Over 200,000 Arkansans utilizing these services. And so, when that law happened, all the payday lenders left the state.
[00:32:50] KM: Is that a good or bad thing? Because they thought they were sharks.
[00:32:53] AW: Well, they are.
[00:32:53] KM: Predatory.
[00:32:54] AW: It is predatory in nature. They’re predatory in nature.
[00:32:56] KM: But what happens to all those people? They're unbanked.
[00:32:58] AW: Right. They have nowhere else to go. And they can't qualify to bank. They have to have an alternative – They have to have an alternative option.
[00:33:07] KM: And to qualify at a bank, you have –
[00:33:07] AW: Or they sink deeper into poverty.
[00:33:10] KM: Yes. To qualify at a bank, you have to have a minimum amount to put in them.
[00:33:14] AW: Well, yeah, you have to have – because banks are regulated institutions. You're required to have a credit score. Credit criteria is considered in your application process. You have to have some collateral. You have to have some assets.
[00:33:30] KM: You can open a bank account with $100, can't you?
[00:33:33] AW: Some places you can. Someplace you could open an account. But then you have to maintain that $100. Or else, if you don't, then the service fees and other fees that go along with maintaining an account sometimes –
[00:33:45] KM: Are you happy or sad about getting rid of the payday –
[00:33:49] AW: You know what? I'm happy about it. But I just wish that there would have been an alternative to come along with that. It’s like you take away –
[00:33:58] GM: Wasn’t done with any solutions.
[00:33:59] AW: Yeah, yeah. I mean, you take away access to capital and credit when you're not going to provide it. So, get rid of the sharks, the predatory lenders, which prey on low-income communities, in unbanked populations. But then you didn't come back with a safer, more affordable, more flexible alternative. That my – I guess it was for us. That's how we emerged out of that unmet need. Because with Barber Colleges in the low and moderate income community, we services customer, has been servicing them. We've been an anchor institution. They start coming to us for loans.
[00:34:35] KM: That's what I was going to say. So, your barber shop said, “Okay, we'll start cashing your checks.”
[00:34:42] AW: No, we didn't cash checks right off. We just provided small loans.
[00:34:45] KM: You just said, “We'll start providing small loans.” How do you collect on those loans?
[00:34:49] AW: Well, at the time – we're sophisticated now a little bit. But at the time, it was just old school, you know, “Hey, you're going to character loans. You're going to – you need to borrow this money until you can pay it back. Can you pay it back in 30 days?” Or whatever the case may be. They would borrow the 250 bucks at the time, because I was funding it out of my pocket. We didn't have any –
[00:35:08] KM: Did they work for you?
[00:35:10] AW: Well, they weren't profitable, because our rates and terms –
[00:35:12] KM: No. I mean, with the people that you loan the money to. Were they working for you?
[00:35:15] AW: No. No. No. These are –
[00:35:16] KM: I mean, Arkansas Flag and Banner loans money to its employees. But we don't loan money to anybody else.
[00:35:21] AW: Yeah. Well, these were community members that patronize our Barber College. They got their haircut. We provide $5 haircuts. These same folks will come in, and if they lose a job or need needed access to capital, they would come in and say, “Hey, Mr. Washington. Man, I'm sorry to come at you with this. But, man, I'm really in need right now. Is there any way I can borrow 100 bucks until I get paid or –”
[00:35:45] KM: Did you ever get burned?
[00:35:48] AW: No. Not initially, because it was a trust code. You know, it was like, “Hey, I'm going to do this for you. But I need you to come back and pay me back or I ain’t going to do it no more.”
[00:35:56] GM: You said character loan. I like that.
[00:35:57] AW: Yeah, it’s a character loan. Old school character loan.
[00:36:02] KM: That’s my first loan. They call them signature loans. But it was just, yeah, “You're a nice person. Here's $1,000.”
[00:36:08] AW: Right. And these folks are working. They’re working and they’re –
[00:36:11] KM: And so, when did you decide to go from loaning character loan out of your Barber College to there's something here?
[00:36:18] AW: Well, as the demand begin to grow. Because after a year of doing that, we started – people telling people. Word of mouth started going around. And now we got people telling our family members and people showing up. And I'm like, “Hey, we need to look at if there's some programs out there with the government to help us –”
[00:36:35] KM: Were you charging interest?
[00:36:37] AW: Yeah. 5%. But I mean, that's wasn't profitable. It wasn't sustainable. It wasn't even scalable. So, it was just some social good. And I mean, it did what it did. It helped us to build a track record, though, of lending. And that's how we were able to apply to the United States Treasury CDFI Fund to become a CDFI.
[00:36:54] KM: Wow! This is a great story, ain’t it?
[00:36:56] GM: Mm-hmm. I'm inspired. This is incredible.
[00:36:57] KMI know, right? He's inspiring. When we come back, we'll continue our conversation with Mr. Arlo Washington, a young entrepreneur whose first business was a chain of barbershops. Second business was Washington Barber College in Little Rock, Arkansas. And now his passion is a nonprofit, the People's Trust Loan Fund, a nonprofit, as I said, through the help of the Winthrop Rockefeller and the Department of Treasury CDFI funds helps fund small businesses in low income communities.
I want to remind everyone, this show broadcasts every Friday at 2pm on KABF 88.3 FM. And Saturdays at 11am 101.1 The Answer. Podcasts are always available wherever you like to listen. Or you can watch the video on our Up in Your Business YouTube channel. More to come after the break.
[00:37:48] ANNOUNCER: Here's a message from Dreamland ballroom, upstairs in Taborean Hall, Homer flagandbanner.com. When a great organization serving a great community issues a new mission statement, that's a big deal. And the Friends of Dreamland has won. Friends of Dreamland celebrates the community of historic West 9th Street, shares the legacy of Dreamland Ballroom and preserves the original intent of Taborean Hall.
Let's break that down. Celebrate the community, the men and women that lived worked and played in the West 9th Street Neighborhood faced brutal social stigma every day, but thrived. We'll never forget this, and we'll always celebrate it. Share the legacy. There's no doubt that the most fun and fascinating facet of the history of Dreamland Ballroom are all the legends that graced the Dreamland stage. Unfortunately, it's taken only one generation to almost completely forget this great history. It promotes pride in our hometown when we remember it, and encourages us to do everything we can to keep this community strong. And finally, preserve the original intent. Taborean Hall was built as a central fixture of commerce, community organization and entertainment. And that's our mission statement now.
We have a major legacy to live up to and a lot of work ahead of us. But we plan to move forward. See how you can help develop a new mission statement into reality. Visit dreamlandballroom.org.
[00:39:12] KM: You're listening to Up in Your Business with me, Kerry McCoy. And I'm speaking today with the creative entrepreneur, Mr. Arlo Washington, who went from barber to banker when he founded the People's Trust Loan Fund in Little Rock, Arkansas, which you explained at the beginning of the show is not really a bank because you don't take deposit.
[00:39:30] AW: We're in the loan business.
[00:39:31] KM: How were you smart enough to start something like this? I don't think I could.
[00:39:36] AW: Well, I mean –
[00:39:37] KM: It’s a lot of paper reading. You're not a lawyer.
[00:39:39] AW: Well, I'm not a lawyer.
[00:39:40] KM: Are you a graduate of college?
[00:39:42] AW: I didn't graduate college.
[00:39:42] KM: See? I said kids don’t go to college. Just don’t go to college. Just work.
[00:39:48] GM: Don’t listen to my mother.
[00:39:49] AW: Experience is the best teacher. And it’s a lived experience. And so, having lived in that experience, understand what the credit needs are. And then also – We emerged. We truly emerged out of unmet credit need here in Central Arkansas.
[00:40:03] KM: Truly. Met a need.
[00:40:05] AW: Yeah, we emerged. When you emerge, then you learn as you go. You build the plane while you're flying it.
[00:40:12] KM: Oh. My mother used to say I jump off buildings and I build my wings on the way down.
[00:40:18] AW: There you go.
[00:40:19] KM: Arlo and I are like kindred souls.
[00:40:22] GM: It’s true.
[00:40:23] AW: Yeah. Yeah.
[00:40:25] KM: So, it is a lot of technical reading, right?
[00:40:28] AW: Oh, yes. Oh, yes. I spent hours –
[00:40:29] AW: Who did you go to?
[00:40:32] AW: Well, because I was so into trying to have a solution to solve a common problem, I would just read articles. I read up – I joined organizations, other CDFI organizations. There were a lot of knowledge sharing. I went to conferences in Washington, D.C. and other places.
[00:40:53] KM: How do you even know about CDFI? I didn't know about any of that until today.
[00:40:55] AW: Well, I had an uncle that that worked as a security guard at a CDFI in Chicago.
[00:41:03] KM: Oh, serendipity.
[00:41:03] AW: And so, when he came here and saw what I was doing at the Barber College, then he said, “Hey, you should look at becoming a CDFI because you're fulfilling their mission.” And I was like, “Man, I'm already regulated with the Department of Education and being a Title IV school. And I don't really want to deal with any more agencies.” And that's not negative. But I just don't want the compliance and regulatory requirements of maintaining that certification of status.
And so, a couple years went by, I was working with a local state representative and some other community members that were interested in having a financial institution. We were all trying to organize and trying to figure out how we could do this. And then, it kind of just was left with me, and my one administrator and our board that we had at the time.
[00:42:05] KM: Was there anybody else doing it in Arkansas? Was there another CDFI?
[00:42:08] AW: Well, there are 19 CDFIs in the state. 15 of them are banks and credit unions. And then you have Arkansas Capital Corporation. You have Communities Unlimited. You have Forge. You have – And People Trust.
[00:42:24] KM: So, why was yours going to be different?
[00:42:26] AW: Well, we're the only minority CDFI.
[00:42:28] KM: That's what I was going to say. You're the only one that's really down in the trenches that understands what's going on.
[00:42:34] AW: Yeah. Well, I mean, I won't say that. Because I mean, they've been doing this work, just different types of work. Different type of loans.
[00:42:40] GM: I was going to say, yours is community-specific.
[00:42:42] AW: Yes, it’s more community-based, which allows us to be able to –
[00:42:44] KM: What's the criteria to get a loan for you?
[00:42:47] AW: You have to show the ability to repay the loan. You have to have a job. If you have a job and you can repay the loan, then –
[00:42:54] KM: What if somebody wants to start a new business?
[00:42:56] AW: If they want to start a new business, they come see us, and then we can provide them with some technical assistance to see where they are in the process and what we need to do. Yeah, because sometime there are different stages. If you’re a start up, you may need to know how do I go get a business license? Where do I go to get – what does the LLC – What is a C Corp? What’s an S Corp? These different things we have to work through and help them understand.
[00:43:19] KM: If they come in the front door – Is that how they do it? They just come in in the front door and then there's somebody lovely and friendly to meet them and hold their hand.
[00:43:26] AW: And shore up the community.
[00:43:26] KM: Describe your day to me.
[00:43:28] AW: My day? I wear many hats. And then to whom much is given, much is required. I do understand that. And it's a humbling thing for me. I'm leaving here. I'm going to the Barber College. And because we have office space there for People Trust, then I can walk into People Trust and check and see how things are going as well. I have a staff. We're staff of 10 with People Trust. We have 10 with people trust, and we have eight employees with Washington Barber College.
Between my staff – I lean on my staff a lot to help me with being able to do everything, compliance as well as talking to customers. Very important for low-income communities that have mechanisms on the ground. They can deal with the government. CDFIs that can talk to state local government and help be an intermediary for critical resources that wouldn't otherwise reach these communities. And so, because these communities went so long without having that, then they just fall deeper and deeper into poverty. And violent crime as assault is directly – and also health disparities, health issues as well, are directly tied to poverty. And so, whenever you have these concentrated areas of poverty, then that's where you experienced a lot of the –
[00:44:51] KM: I did hear you talk a little bit about that. You were talking about financial literacy, healthy diets, critical thinking, don't go to jail and stuff. Are you teaching all of that, too?
[00:45:05] AW: Well, we provide financial education. One thing about financial education people need to understand is it does touch every part of your life. It's not just – we talk about the financial psychology as to how money scripts are created and how understanding your credit score, budgeting, savings, investing, things of that nature. Just kind of – it covers every area of your life. When we have financial education workshops, where we provide one-on-one financial education, we can take a deep dive into that person's life and see what their life circumstance is and being at that point and meet them where they are.
[00:45:42] KM: I watched your speech you gave. In the very beginning of the speech, it struck a chord with me. I don't know if you remember this, but you started off with going, “I've heard people say things like, “Why are poor people lazy? Why are the poor people spend money on things they shouldn't be spending money on?” I can't remember them all. But I have to confess, I have said and thought all of that.
[00:46:06] AW: Really? Yeah. Yeah.
[00:46:08] GM: She has.
[00:46:08] AW: So anyway, I totally listened to all of that and thought, “I have been guilty of some of that.” And so, I think everybody should go and listen to it. But at the very end of it, you told the story of four people.
[00:46:25] AW: Oh! Story of somebody, everybody, somebody, nobody, anybody.
[00:46:33] KM: Yeah. And you heard this before, right?
[00:46:35] GM: Oh. No. That’s clever, though.
[00:46:38] KM: Okay. I just love this.
[00:46:40] AW: So, there was an important job to do. And everybody was asked to do it. Everybody was sure that somebody would do it. Anybody would have done it. But nobody did it. Somebody got angry, because it was everybody's job. Everybody thought anybody would do it. But nobody realized that anybody wouldn't do it. It ended up that everybody blamed somebody when nobody did what anybody could have done.
[00:47:19] GM: Oh, yeah, that's good.
[00:47:22] KM: Ain’t that good?
[00:47:23] GM: It's clever. So true, though. I mean –
[00:47:27] KM: Yeah, it ended up that everybody blamed somebody when nobody did what anybody could have done. I was like, “Dang. I get that.” I will say this about poor people.
[00:47:40] GM: Here it comes.
[00:47:43] KM: And not just for people. Even people I know. Everybody. Stay married. It is proven fact that if you continue to jump from relationship to relationship, it will keep you from reaching some of your –
[00:47:56] GM: But even then, that's a resource you have to have to keep it together.
[00:48:00] KM: What?
[00:48:01] GM: Marriage?
[00:48:03] AW: Well, no finance, no romance.
[00:48:05] GM: Yeah. I mean, money problems are a big reason why marriages end. Sometimes you just need therapy. And who can afford that? You know?
[00:48:14] KM: But sometimes – And I mean, I have friends who have done this, who just go, “Well, that got tough. I’m getting out.”
[00:48:19] GM: Yeah. Oh, yeah. Right. Well, and tough is fair. But –
[00:48:23] KM: And I just think we're too quick sometimes to not stick through that. And so, you're like, “Well, they shouldn't have done that to me. And so, my ego gets in the way.” But if you really want to build generational wealth, try to stay married, if you can.
[00:48:38] AW: Two is better than one.
[00:48:39] KM: It's cheaper. Two is better than one. It's cheaper to go to counseling than it is to get divorced. And it's good for your kids. It creates that generational wealth that we've been talking about, because you're not splitting it up. And then dad's marrying somebody else, and then he dies and that girl gets all the money.
[00:48:56] AW: Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah.
[00:48:58] KM: Anyway, that's one. And there's just some simple things that I think people can do, like get to work on time. I'm amazed how many people, have to tell them that they have to come to work on time.
[00:49:12] AW: Yeah, yeah. Well, labor force is taking a hit with the pandemic and a lot of stuff.
[00:49:17] KM: But prior to that. College graduates come to work for me, and I go, “You know, you got to come to work on time, and you can't be stoned.” And they're like, “Oh, really?”
[00:49:24] AW: Well, you can't teach work ethic. I mean, you have to have that work ethic.
[00:49:29] KM: How do you teach, though? Simple things. No, I think you can. Because I teach that to people all the time. And they're like, “Oh, like crazy.” And I bet you do too. And I’m just going to say –
[00:49:41] AW: So, I already checked it.
[00:49:41] KM: I know, right? You're teaching it all the time.
[00:49:43] AW: I teach it all the time. I do.
[00:49:44] KM: I do think that it's parents responsibility to teach their children good work ethic, get to work on time, responsibility and all those things that you were saying.
[00:49:53] AW: Absolutely.
[00:49:54] KM: What do you want our listeners to take away from this interview today?
[00:49:58] AW: Well, I want the listeners to be aware that their community development and financial institutions are critical organizations in your community. And if you have one, you know one – if you don't know them, get to know him. Find out. Because they can provide access to capital, access to credit and financial products and services, developmental services, financial education, technical assistance if you're starting a small business. And then also, CDFIs are critical to the state as well, because they can work with the state to help the state to be able to deploy critical resources to hard to penetrate communities. And also, communities that lack of investment. Banks are partners of CDFIs. We have several bank partners. To name a few, First National Bank. Big supporters of ours. First Horizon Bank, Bank of Little Rock. Who else? Regions Bank. Regions Bank is big. They did a grant for us to be able to support our work as well.
And Home Bank of Arkansas was one of the first banks that took a chance and gave us our first investment to be able to make small loans as well. And those that I may have failed admits, because we have several partners. We were awarded a Google Grant, Grow with Google Grant, to provide loans to women-owned, minority-owned small businesses.
One thing about it is we love everybody. We don't discriminate, race, color, creed, everybody. There are low-income, people in every race in every neighborhood. We want to make sure that it’s inclusive, it’s diverse. That there's equity here in Arkansas.
[00:51:40] KM: Any advice for young people caught in a cycle of poverty?
[00:51:42] AW: Come see us. Come visit one of our locations. 4103 East Broadway Street, North Little Rock
[inaudible 00:51:48]. Come to 5300 West 65th Street in Little Rock, Arkansas. Get a career. Build a foundation for yourself. Get banked.
[00:51:57] KM: Get banked. I love it. I loved meeting with you.
[00:51:59] AW: Thanks.
[00:52:00] KM: Here's your gift, US and Arkansas flag. I should have put New York in there, I guess.
[00:52:03] AW: Thank you.
[00:52:03] KM: That’s a desk set. Every banker needs a desk that. In addition, every banker needs a lapel pin with the US and Arkansas State Flag. You can't be a banker without a lapel pen.
[00:52:12] AW: Oh, wow! Look at you.
[inaudible 00:52:11]. I appreciate it.
[00:52:13] KM: You probably already have one.
[00:52:16] AW: Well, hey, you know what? Now I got two.
[00:52:17] KM: There you go.
Thank you for spending time with us. We hope you've heard or learned something that's been inspiring or enlightening. And that whatever it is, will help you up your independence, your business or your life. I'm Kerry McCoy, and I'll see you next time on Up in Your Business. Until then, be brave and keep it up.
[00:52:35] GM: You've been listening to Up in Your Business with Kerry McCoy. For links to resources you heard discussed on today's show, go to flagandbanner.com, select radio show and choose today's guest. If you'd like to sponsor this show or any show, contact me, Gray. That's firstname.lastname@example.org. All interviews are recorded and posted the following week. Stay informed of exciting upcoming guests by subscribing to our YouTube channel or podcast wherever you'd like to listen. Kerry's goal is simple, to help you live the American dream.