Much of what John Paul DeJoria does today goes back almost 70 years to the moment his destitute Greek immigrant mother gave him a dime and told him to place it in the bucket of the Salvation Army woman who stood in front of a store ringing a bell.
At the time the family was living in Echo Park, near downtown Los Angeles.
His mother didn’t have money to buy Christmas presents that year, but despite her poverty she taught her children that unshared success — no matter how little — is failure.
This lesson in 1950 — when a dime was a lot of money — was the seminal influence on the success one of the wealthiest and most successful men in the world.
Fast forward almost 70 years and DeJoria has become the billionaire who founded John Paul Mitchell Systems and Patron Spirits — each multi-billion-dollar companies.
DeJoria has transformed his own success into a philanthropic machine, supporting charitable efforts such as animal welfare and homelessness, among others.
His philanthropy has led some to call him “one of the most giving men on the planet.”
Coming from very humble beginnings himself, the once homeless DeJoria has always maintained his mother’s mantra — that success unshared is failure — proving that what matters is not how much money someone makes, but rather what he or she does with it.
With decades of success and hundreds of millions in profits under his belt, he has never forgotten where he came from and donates most of his fortune to charitable initiatives.
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