Farrah Gray began contributing to his family’s financial support at the age of 6, and he made his first million by the time he was 14. His success made a lot of people change their thinking about where life in the projects of Chicago’s South Side could lead.
Setting out with an executive-size ambition to make life easier if he could, Gray made use of the most basic resources available to him — such as the rocks he found in the street.
“I started painting these oversize rocks. And I would knock on people’s doors. Knock hard. And shake people’s hand and say, ‘Hello my name is Farrah Gray.’ I said, ‘Would you like to buy this rock? It can be used as paper weights, bookends and door stoppers.’ And people would look at me and say, ‘Isn’t that the rock that was in front of my door?’ And I’d say, ‘Yes, but it’s different now.’”
Gray was 8 years old when he started his business club, called UNEEC, it stood for the Urban Neighborhood Economic Enterprise Club. Gray got local businesspeople to donate transportation and meeting space so kids from the housing projects could learn about business.
At age 12, Gray appeared on a Las Vegas talk show, “Backstage Live,” and then got a job as a co-host.
He was young but he could talk. People started calling to book him for speaking engagements worth thousands of dollars.
Gray made his first million dollars by the age of 14.
“Ask yourself three questions. First, what comes easy to me, but harder to others? The second question is, what would you do for work for years and years and never have to get paid for it? And the third question is, how can you be of service and how can you give back?” Gray advises.
Photo by ABC News.