A World of Inspiration

“Go even bigger… start even earlier to dream big and encourage others to dream big too!”

There are so many inspiring women in this world. The ones that can inspire us the most are the women we grew up with. It could be your mother, sister, aunt or a cherished family friend. For Kim Haas, it was her grandmother who inspired her journey towards starting her own media company and being executive producer, host and creator of Afro Latino Travels with Kim Haas.

She credits her grandmother and parents for supporting, loving and instilling in her a constant belief that she could do anything she wanted to do. One of here fondest memories and biggest inspirations came from her grandmother. When Kim was 8 years old her grandmother took her on a trip to Acapulco that changed her perspective on the world. The simple act of just learning to count in Spanish hooked her for life in a love affair of languages, culture, travel and meeting new people.

“I would think, I met this incredible artist in Havana, and this incredible musician in Rio, or this wonderful gentleman in Venezuela, and they should be honored.” –

Where she is today, all roads lead back to her grandmother and this early trip together. Traveling and language were intertwined along with a love of theatre, television and film. Uniting those elements has been her ultimate dream, starting and owning her own international media company.

Kim loves owning her own business for the opportunity it gives her to think and be creative. “I feel like there are no limits on what I can do, the kinds of projects I can work on, and the control I have over my time,” she said. Kim also loves that being in business for herself means that, through her efforts, her income is unlimited as well. “I talk to others,” she added, “Who say running their own business is not in their makeup, and it does depend on the individual. For me and for my personality, it’s perfect!”

When she traveled to various parts of Latin America, she saw people who looked like she did, but when she was watching Spanish television channels, they weren’t there. That lack of representation of Afro Latinos was heartbreaking to her. “There’s a whole world of people whose stories aren’t being told and whose talents aren’t being expressed,” she said.

“I would think, I met this incredible artist in Havana, and this incredible musician in Rio, or this wonderful gentleman in Venezuela, and they should be honored. Some of the literature and vocabulary that comes from our African descendants in Latin America shouldn’t be lost. Not including them in television or not having them well represented in media is a real disservice and we all lose out. We are missing out on these stories and understanding where some of our dance, music, literature and culture comes from.”

Knowing the impact television has, she wanted to be a part of the movement to change the negative way the few black Latinos you would see were depicted and to change these stereotypes. “I had the idea,” she said, “Why should I wait for the networks to bring these shows to television. This is what I want to do and what I think we all deserve to see.”

She came up with this idea of traveling throughout Latin America and really spotlighting the incredible stories of these amazing people so we can keep the traditions alive. The fundamental need of people is to just be heard and appreciated.

Reflecting back on her career she shared the advice she would give to her younger self. Without even hesitating, she said, “To go even bigger. I would start even earlier to dream big and I try to encourage others to dream big too. With the internet, so much is information is accessible right at our fingertips, so you can find out pretty much anything you want. Know that the fear you have is normal. You just have to keep pushing through it, keeping one foot in front of the other, and seeking out help when you need to. Just don’t let it stop you.”

To find more information or to connect with Kim Haas:

Go to Travelswithkimhaas.com or email her at Haas-media.com

Linda Ruffenach

Founder / Chief Strategic Officer at Execuity. Linda is an experienced entrepreneur, skilled facilitator, and bourbon badass. Her 20+ years of C-level experience enables her to relate to the challenges business owners face every day. As the former CEO of a $100 million international enterprise, she has been through almost every stage a company can experience from fast growth, rapid decline, to complete transformation. In addition to running multiple businesses, Linda is Entrepreneur in Residence at the University of Louisville's School of Business, leading and mentoring undergrad and graduate students on their path to business ownership Linda’s superpower is turning strategy into results.