Born in Gonaïves, Haiti, Daniel spent his childhood seeing first-hand the efforts, successes, and failures of the aid industry in Haiti.
Attending Liberty University in Lynchburg, Virginia on a scholarship from the Turnbull Leadership Program, Daniel studied business administration with a concentration in leadership, and this education helped him to understand the patterns he’d begun to recognize back home.
Upon returning to Haiti in 2006, Daniel noticed a paradox: despite the best of intentions and decades of experience, the broader field of humanitarian NGOs and development initiatives had failed to lift his country out of poverty.
Today, drawing from a wealth of experience as a small-business owner, development professional, investor, and educator, Daniel has an answer.
The only way to end the global cycle of poverty is to empower people to meet their own needs profitably and sustainably. As Daniel says in the documentary Poverty Inc., “No one wants to be a beggar for life.”
Daniel Jean-Louis is an international speaker on business-driven growth in the developing world. He has shared his ideas in over 15 countries around the world including Ecuador, Guatemala, Ivory Coast, Jamaica, Thailand, the Netherlands, and the United States.
Speaking at churches and colleges, Daniel shares insights gleaned from hands-on experience in the fight against poverty with diverse, global audiences.
He lives in Port-au-Prince with his wife and two children.
JOBS, JOBS, JOBS
Throughout his career, Daniel’s work has been driven by the idea that job creation is the best strategy for eliminating poverty.
From 2009-2014, Daniel served as country manager for Partners Worldwide, a 501c3 dedicated to ending poverty through enterprise. He was instrumental in launching the 100K Jobs initiative, equipping NGOs and Haitian businesses to partner together and meet local demand. Since its inception, the project has created over 15,000 jobs on its journey to create 100,000 new jobs by 2020. Daniel continues to serve on the project’s board and train Partners Worldwide’s business coaches.
In March 2016, Daniel published his first book, From Aid to Trade, which examines how aid can hurt, and how agencies can rethink their development approaches to help break the cycle of poverty. When organizations transact locally, they can create the jobs people need to support their families. More information about this campaign to transform aid and development around the world can be found at www.fromaidtotrade.org.
Putting his concepts into practice, Daniel founded Trinity Lodge, a small-business providing affordable short-term housing in Port-au-Prince, Haiti; is a co-founder of Bridge Capital, a private investment firm that helps local businesses finance projects and compete for contracts; and he serves as a professor of business at Quisquéya University and the Haitian State University.
As an educator, entrepreneur, investor, and speaker, Daniel hopes that his ideas will help bring industry back to Haiti and begin to restore the nation.