On July 9, 1999, President Bill Clinton
walked the halls of Locke High School, one of many stops on the "TOUR
ON POVERTY." Clinton praised Mr. Roosevelt Roby, CEO of the World
Business Exchange Network for his import/export trade program.
The program was demonstrated by Keith Callahan and Steven Ramirez,
students at Locke High, who showed the President how Import/Export
trade can be conducted over the Internet. "This is great. I love
it," said Clinton to a crowd of distinguished guests such as Governor
Gray Davis, Congresswoman Juanita McDonald, County Supervisor, Yvonne
Brathwaite Burke and basketball great, Magic Johnson.
"I got it!" The President expressed delight when the students
illustrated how they had learned to middleman a deal to earn a profit.
"You mean, you can find a customer in one country and locate a supplier
in another country, put the deal together and still make the money?
Now, that's how the American Entrepreneur works."
The WBE.NET, a forerunner in the President's plan for the nation's
venture into broader based economic borders such as import/export
trade, earned Clinton's confidence that the youth at Locke High
not only took his words to heart but also put them into action.
Locke Principal, Anne Webb, said, "I wish every student could be
a part of this program! The students taking the course have already
shown marked improvement in their class work."
Clinton reflected surprise to learn from Webb that upon completion
of a transaction of trade, any capital gains will be directed to
the school's scholarship fund. "We have created all kinds of incentives
to invest in emerging markets, whether in Asia, Europe, or Latin
America. Why shouldn't we do this in the United States?," said Sanford
Weill, CEO, Citigroup. Weill, 66, is a Wall Street deal maker traveling
with Clinton on the tour.
Mr. Roby concurs. "Since 1987, our focus has been on establishing
trade routes that lead emerging communities to the global marketplace.
In answer to the President's call that all Americans get involved
in international trade, we have taken a home based business concept
utilizing the newest technology and translated it into a course
curriculum that creates jobs and teaches students to become entrepreneurs
over the Internet."
Juanita McDonald's office was instrumental in getting the LAUSD
to approve the course that attracted the attention of the President
and Governor. After the demonstration, Yvonne Burke Exclaimed, "I
can hardly believe such a wonderful program has been in place at
Locke High." Governor Gray Davis told Mr. Roby that he would give
his support in establishing more high schools with the WBE.NET Trade