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Meet Jatali Bellanton, founder of Kids Who Bank

Photo courtesy of Shareif Ziyadet

Rolling out sat down with Jatali Bellanton, mother and finance professional, to talk about her mission, vision and values.

Please inform our readers a little bit about yourself and how you ended up in a career in finance.

I worked professionally in finance for 13 and a half years in investment banking and forensic accounting in both the U.K. and American markets. This came about because as a child I watched my mother struggle with her finances. She gambled a lot and essentially lived to borrow. I hated it, so in turn, with the help of my dad, I became financially stable.

Tell us about your organization, Kids Who Bank.

Kids Who Bank stemmed from my desire to pass on my financial knowledge to my son and other youth in a fun, story-formatted way. Now it is an organization that teaches both youth and adults financial literacy worldwide. It also has a finance curriculum which has gone into 217 schools nationwide, including 15 colleges.

That’s amazing. This is so important for Black people, especially because we tend to have a bad relationship with money. That was one of the reasons I expanded my entertainment law practice to include estate planning. Entertainment professionals were making all of this money and blowing it. In your experience, what’s a recurring issue you see within the entertainment industry as it relates to finances?

For me, the top three issues are — people who are living beyond their means, not having sufficient insurance or employing estate planning tools, and investing without doing the proper research.

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