Jun 17, 2021
2020 was a year of great social upheaval, protests, and even riots. Some of the worst that we have seen in decades. Many of us, however, remember when four police officers who had been videotaped beating motorist Rodney King were found not guilty of criminal acts in 1992, the city of Los Angeles erupted in what at the time was the worst rioting seen in the US since the 1960s. The loss of life and destruction of property left a significant scar on the city. By the time the riots ended, 63 people had been killed, 2,383 had been injured, more than 12,000 had been arrested, and estimates of property damage were over $1 billion. The Rodney King riots not only reduced taxable sales in the city immediately following the unrest, but has had a lasting impact on the economic performance of the city of Los Angeles.
A 2017 study showed the communities most affected by the L.A. Riots have seen little, if any, economic growth during the past two-and-a-half decades, In some neighborhoods, unemployment and poverty have worsened despite efforts by community leaders to boost economic development.
Natalie Torres-Haddad was born in El Salvador but was brought up in Inglewood California in the early nineteen nineties. At the age of ten, everything changed with the LA riots. She could no longer play outside, her parents put bars on her windows, restaurants and stores were looted and burnt down to the ground in her neighborhood. And she grew up wanting to do something about it. Accordingly, she went to college to learn about finances to help her community. She got a major in finance and international business but unfortunately she still didn’t understand the meaning of true financial literacy.
During her second year of grad school, burdened by student and credit card debt, a mortgage, and running a burgeoning nonprofit, she lost her job and suffered a severe bout of depression which culminated in a short stay in an acute psychiatric hospital. The moment of clarity she experienced shortly thereafter would ultimately change her trajectory and introduce her to the five steps that made her realize that everything would be ok.
Natalie Torres-Haddad is a two time TEDX Speaker, An international Award Winning Author of Financially Savvy in 20 Minutes, a bilingual podcast host, international keynote speaker and educator. She has been featured in the Huffington Post, LA Times, 60 second docs and a Honda commercial playing herself as a Financial Expert.
She now is a successful real estate investor and enjoys a career traveling across the country advocating for financial and women’s empowerment and teaching the foreign language of financial literacy.