Founded on Humble Principles with Big Goals

The Male Mogul Initiative began with Walter Mendenhall and five young men in a church basement on the West Side of Chicago. The gathering was predicated upon discussion of how youths of color could best fulfill their potential and lead their marginalized communities to better futures. 

Walter, a former NFL running back and Chicago native, started the organization after meeting a young man on Chicago’s West Side who was bright, athletic, and academically gifted. 

This individual also sold drugs to support himself and his family. He was on a dangerous path despite all of his exceptional qualities, a path familiar to all too many young men of color in Chicago. 

This left a significant impression on our Founder and inspired the action that led Walter and those five boys to that church basement. Today, the Male Mogul Initiative has mentored thousands of young men from the South and West Side Neighborhoods of Chicago.

Making a Difference through Mentorship

The Male Mogul Initiative is dedicated to empowering young men of color just like this. Guiding and mentoring Black and Brown youth who have the tools necessary to be successful. Showing them that they have the qualities to BE successful, and teaching them exactly HOW they can be.  

We help young men understand that they can be great, and then we show them how. Our goal is to build generations of exceptional leaders and role models from Chicago’s less-resourced neighborhoods. 

And that’s exactly who our mentors are: role models and examples of success from those same neighborhoods so that our program participants can see for themselves what their own success could look like.

Our Partners