Meet the Founder: Brett Williams

Brett Williams

Hi everyone. I’m Brett Williams, creator and founder of the Emerging Market . I wanted to take a moment to tell you a little bit about myself and about how the Emerging Market came to be.

In 2011, after spending two years in the service of the Americorps Vista program as a volunteer serving communities affected by Hurricane Katrina, I felt I’d left a lot undone. In my time with Americorps, we’d launched initiatives to improve computer literacy in adults and seniors, prepare high school students for college and make more resources available in lower socioeconomic neighborhoods. After those two years, my service ended and I sought out ways to continue what I’d started. In 2011, I was awarded the GulfSouth Youth Action Fund Grant and utilized it to leverage funding from Mobile Community Action to fund an initiative known as the Mobile ACT Prep Program.

Photo of Brett Williams after winning the Gulf South Youth Action Fund Grant from the OperationReach Inc. GulfSouth Youth Action Corps in New Orleans, LA.


The Mobile ACT Prep Program was the precursor to what is now the Emerging Market. Founded with the simple and narrow goals of better preparing parents and students for the pivotal first two years of college, the program coordinated with teachers, students, parents and counselors to recreate the experience of studying in a college setting while preparing students to take the ACT and SAT test.

I chose ACT prep of all the programs we’d started as Americorps Vista volunteers, because the program presented the most upside and room to scale my efforts. Its well established that by empowering our youth, we broaden our own futures and in lower socioeconomic communities, its especially true because very rarely do those who graduate return home.

I set out to be the face of college graduates and the impact they could have on their community. In two years that program helped 24 students enroll in college and awarded a half dozen scholarships to students to assist with tuition and books. Unfortunately, we – like many other companies – couldn’t scale to meet our desired goals and we fizzled out before we could see our graduates on the other side of their degrees.

In 2014, I decided to take a hiatus from the nonprofit sector opting to improve my understanding of the law and politics. Now, with a renewed calling and additional acumen gained from a profession in law, I’m asking again for your assistance in scaling solutions to grow and improve our community.


Brett Williams

Brett Williams
Author: Brett Williams


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