Published On: Fri, Jan 30th, 2015

Michael Milken Urges Outreach to Latino ‘Economic Giant’

Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images

Financier and philanthropist Michael Milken said the Latino community of California, and especially of the LA area, is an economic giant that more business leaders need to reach, a report said.

“The future of California is tied to the future of the Latino community in California, ” he said in an interview with Los Angeles Magazine. “If we don’t make capital available to people with ability, who deserve it, then our country is poorer”, LA Observed said.

Milken talks about being an early investor in major Latino media institutions such as Univision and Telemundo, and also says his life changed during the 1965 Watts riots when the economic disparities he saw led him to change college majors from math and physics to business, the website said.

The video is from the magazine’s Big Shots series of videos, which is typically not hard-hitting stuff but the executives, politicians and other “big shots” sometimes have interesting things to say, the report said.

The Milken Family Foundation and his other philanthropic ventures predate Milken’s 1990 criminal conviction on federal securities violations. Milken, who made $1.1 billion over four years as head of the junk bond department at Drexel Burnham Lambert Inc., pleaded guilty in 1990 to six counts of conspiracy and fraud related to illegal securities trading, according to The New York Times.

His lawyers asked the judge to consider Milken’s $360 million in charitable contributions and other acts of generosity before sentencing, according to the Los Angeles Times. Milken was sentenced to 10 years, served two, and as part of his plea bargain, agreed to pay $600 million in fines and restitution to defrauded investors, the Times reported.


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