My Story, Hello World!
An Introduction by Michael Carrington, MBA
An important goal of mine is to continuously expand my ‘reference group’, I am looking for high-performing entrepreneurs around the globe who resonate with conscious capitalism. To that end, I want to provide you with a bit of context of who I am and what I am working on.
I was born in Miami, Florida, where my younger years were spent growing up in a house of 4 other rock-star family members. Growing up in Miami was an interesting and diversity-rich experience; Caribbean and Latin American culture has a huge influence on just about everything in the region from food, to business introductions, to the educational curriculum, and even the traffic (seriously!). As much as my heart will call me to Miami every now and then, I knew – even from an early age - that to better understand how to value-add to the lives of others, I would eventually have to leave the city and explore the world. Early life for me in Miami involved many different activities, hobbies, and interests – my mother exposed me to different curricular and extra-curricular activities – hoping that one would ‘stick’. Between the 3rd and 6th grades I briefly took up Tae Kwon Do (to this day I still have a love for the martial arts), American Red Cross swimming lessons (completing level 5 competency [out of 6-levels]), piano lessons, acting lessons, and middle school soccer. In 1992, and at the age of 4, my Montessori elementary school exposed me to the wonders of the Macintosh LC II computer, this exposure of daily work and exploration on the ‘Mac’ sparked a science and technology interest in me that I will not realize until much later in youth.
Not included in my formal exposure to activities was my deep, then-unrealized, passion for science and technology. In 6th grade I started selling candy (I would buy bulk bags and sell the individual pieces for a profit) and home-made braded key-chains in school and at church. My profits would fund my Estes model rocketry interest. My model rocketry interest was a VERY clandestine operation since my parents did not want me to ‘play’ with rockets, fireworks, etc. as a hobby; it was a struggle to really dive deep into my early curiosity of rocketry science. I remember getting in trouble because I purchased a model rocket and because no-one was available to supervise my launch, I launched it myself. When it was found out that no-one supervised my launch I was not allowed to pursue rocketry again. I also loved to “take-shit-apart” as a kid. When my electronics no longer worked (usually the result of a dead battery but other times not) I would habitually find a screwdriver, or relevant tool, and open up the (always unplugged) toy or gadget. This early curiosity was pivotal to my exploration of the technological world around me and vital to my desire in exploring STEM subjects.
I often changed schools from elementary through to the end of middle school due to developmental challenges. My parents noticed that I struggled with ‘fitting-in’ as a result of the multiple school changes and to help keep me focused they enrolled me in violin lessons at 11 years old. By the time I reached high school, I learned to embrace the struggle so I capitalized on it by learning how to socialize and connect to diverse groups of people. From Grade 9-12 I attended an exclusive public arts high school in Miami called New World School of the Arts (NWSA). The school requires incoming students to audition in their respective art field – my art field was music performance with orchestral violin being my specific path. This was a tremendous achievement for me and I attribute my experience there as the catalyst of growth in my adult years. NWSA challenged my creative muscle and academic prowess; I “paid attention” in my honors biology, chemistry, and physics classes; as a result, I formed a lasting affinity to science and technical-thinking despite not majoring in a science field in college. Ancillary to my creative concentrations at NWSA I began looking forward to my professional interests and became involved in volunteering, political, and economic groups. In 2005 I saved up to join a group of national high school students and traveled to Washington, DC where I participated in debate teams and mock trials.
High school graduation in 2006 led me to the University of Central Florida (UCF) in the same year. While at UCF I met a number of mentors who guided me with exposure to behavioral psychology, international business, and entrepreneurship. I started volunteering with a sustainability group (IDEAS For Us) and found out how I wanted to play the ‘long-game’ of my life. Exposure to technology-, resource-, and environmental-sustainability formed the base of my social entrepreneurial ethos and it was just what I was looking for as an avenue of expression for me. I graduated UCF and started working in the international market as a brand and marketing expert. During that experience I had the pleasure of working physically in Fiji, Australia, Mexico, Hawaii, Vanuatu, and New Caledonia in the field of B2B branding, marketing and marketing data science. On numerous occasions I’ve spoken on stage with crowds of over 300 people and facilitated client-business interactions in the luxury goods and merchandising industry.
This brings us to ‘present day’. I am a 29 year old global strategy consultant, sustainable real estate redeveloper, technology expert, and serial entrepreneur. I have consulted for a Fortune 500 company leading a team in developing VBA data-aggregation code, and addressed executives of mining and fintech companies in Perth at the American Chamber of Commerce in Australia (AmCham) on the subject of investment in the Aboriginal business sector. My current passion-project involves the implementation and development of a mobile app with my team. I continue to run real estate acquisitions and redevelopment throughout the United States and Australian markets. There are incredible opportunities for the integration of lasting sustainable technologies in the real estate sector – while doing so without eschewing profit. My redevelopment company routinely partners with VCs and private investors that focus on evidence based (analytically-backed) sustainable growth trends.
When I was much younger I remember a family mentor of mine telling me “trust and loyalty are the real currency – without those two things, it will be hard out there in the world”. I internalized those words. To this day I remember those words and because of that I really care about the relationships that are built and I continually look for ways to provide value to people around me.