Photo Credit: Comfort Photography
David DeBerry II
Have you ever gained financial literacy at a party? You might if you attend one of David DeBerry’s events. In 2019, he co-founded Keys to Black Wealth (KTBW), a multimedia and edutainment firm whose goal is to close the racial wealth gap and empower the Black community via events, using entertainment to provide real-world financial education. “Finance can be boring, so we host events centered around financial concepts,” David explains. This out-of-the-box approach has earned David recognition at a Black History Month event, a Franklin County Service Award, and a Congressional Proclamation from Congresswoman Joyce Beatty. David was teaching financial literacy at a financial services company, where he still serves as a regional vice president, when he got the idea for KTBW. “I was frustrated and thinking about how I could help people who find finances boring? I thought, why not combine education and entertainment(edutainment)?” Their very first event attracted 200 people, and they’ve had 25 events since then, featuring celebrity guests, as well as food, music, content creation and much more. “It’s partying with a purpose,” David says. “We take finance and make it fun for people to learn.”
Based in Columbus, Ohio, KTBW’s reach extends far beyond its Midwest borders with a podcast with 12,000 listeners and a YouTube channel with 4,000 subscribers. “We educate, but we’re relatable,” he says. “We focus on the working class and help people create wealth. And as entrepreneurs, we're also developing a business.” He also encourages his financial services team, which has grown from 5 to 42 agents, to recruit and build teams of their own, ensuring financial knowledge for generations to come. David and his agency provide clients with financial education and literacy, as well as an opportunity for individuals to obtain their financial licenses.
David credits his leadership skills to officiating basketball games for 12 years, as well as being a dean of intake for Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity Inc., the oldest Black fraternity in the U.S. His inspiration for financial education also stems from a personal place. After a family tragedy made him painfully aware of the importance of financial literacy and planning, he pivoted from criminal justice and got licensed in financial services. It’s been his goal ever since to ensure that all people have access to this education so that they and their families can ensure stability for the future.
David DeBerry II
Co-CEO — Keys to Black Wealth,