Up Close and personal with Kemal Brown
Passion, confidence, and vision - that life philosophy drove 26-year-old Kemal Brown to shape his destiny of being the founder and chief executive officer of Digita Global Marketing and Accume International.
Upon meeting Brown, you could immediately sense a regal, understated dignity and charm. Yet, in his former years, Brown was a shy boy who wanted to become a pilot. Surprisingly, he has now become a force to be reckoned with.
Born in St Andrew, Brown migrated at the age of 10 to the United States, where he became an honour student at Miami Norland Senior High School. After completing high school, Brown returned to Jamaica to pursue a double major in political science and international relations at the University of the West Indies (UWI). In three years, he attained his bachelor's degree and received a scholarship to do his master's degree while he lectured in his department.
Even though Brown is an overachiever, he admits that in university, he was not a fan of classes or books but after the tragedy of losing his best friend, Brown became an executor with no time to waste.
"It was a turning point in my life. Since his friend's death, I feel like I'm living for two and I had to go in overdrive," Brown expressed.
Determined to Win
Brown went on to share with Flair that after the tragedy, he finished his master's degree and got a job at the Institute for Gender Development Studies (IGDS) - UWI as a research assistant. Brown had developed a new attitude towards work. Books became his best friend and he was set on leaving a legacy by impacting the world.
"Your perception of life determines your reality and your perception is your attitude. I developed a 'can-do' attitude that led me to great things in life. Opportunities come from your abilities. You have to own your abilities so that you can add additional value to others and this will allow you to realise the dreams and aspirations you want. Life is about impacting people and that is one of my goals," Brown shared.
While working at IGDS, Brown was also a lecturer at the University College of the Caribbean and a producer, radio presenter and marketing officer at Nationwide 90FM. In 2014, another opportunity presented itself and Brown started working at Leahcim Semaj Company Limited as a solutions officer.
Journey to His Dreams
One could say Brown had it all but he was far from his destiny. Going down memory lane, Brown told Flair how he arrived at his dreams - being an entrepreneur and changing lives through motivational speaking.
At four years old, Brown visited a metalwork shop with his father - who is also a businessman and saw some engine bearings that resembled marbles. Being a bit of a marble fan, Brown asked the owner if he could get them at the end of each week so he could sell them at his school. With this, Brown took them to school and made $US70 by the beginning of that summer. This marked the beginning of his entrepreneurial journey.
During university, Brown developed two businesses he called his 'hustles'- KLB Gizmos and Electronics and Nova Tech, that paid for his studies. Each represented his love for technology and entrepreneurship.
In January of this year, Brown launched Digita, a digital media marketing company that continues to live up to its purpose of building brands.
"Entrepreneurship is me but inspiring is my purpose," Brown said.
While lecturing, Brown realised that he liked motivating and inspiring his students more than teaching them about politics and other governance related themes. This led him to create Accume International that would help him inspire nations and individuals to greatness.
With his love for motivational speaking, Brown became a member of Global Shapers Community that allowed him to make a contribution to his community. He has also trained executives in speeches and motivated at seminars, workshops and Jamaica Employers' Federation conference.
When asked where he gets his determination and influence from, Brown explained "My mother is a great influence in my life. She is a phenomenal woman and taught me sound lessons about life. She taught me the importance of having purpose and grounded me in core values. She was a visionary and my dad was the executor."
Brown who plans on taking his Digita to greater heights is determined to be better than the person he was yesterday. He continues to pursue excellence and is happy that he made a change.
"I wanted to change. I wanted to be different. I think all change comes from desire. Who we are today is a succession of steps we have taken every single day. People like to wait until New Year's revolutions to make a change but right now, a minute from now is a change, you have to activate that desire and act on it," Brown advised.