Sameson Louis, Founder & President of Economic Development for Cap-Haitien (EDCH)
Haiti has been suffering from brain drain syndrome. Haitians play a key role in every society from the Republic of Congo, to the Netherlands, from Greece, to Saudi Arabia, from Paris, to Cuba, from Quebec, to New York City. Further efforts must be made to secure those talents within Haiti. Global connectivity is the tool to use to give impetus to the country’s identity.
“More Haitian college graduates have left Haiti, per capita, than any other country in the world. When you think of the talent that Haiti has produced that benefits us and others, what we want to do is make it possible for any bright, young, ambitious Haitian to stay home and to build his or her country.” - Secretary Hillary Clinton
As a visionary and community leader, Sameson Louis strongly believes in community development and giving back. He has created opportunities for financial self-sufficiency and increased the value of physical and human capital. His childhood in the slums of Cap-Haïtien, Haiti was a preamble to a life of benevolence. The economic crises, political unrest and social injustices weighed heavily on the poor, which was, and still is, the majority of the masses in Haiti. Equality and social fairness were foreign in the Haitian vocabulary. Public amenities, such as clean water, sanitation, pavement, a sewage system, toilets and bathrooms, were few. The people were often left at the mercy of foreigners. In the midst of his dark hours, which included a difficult separation from members of his family, Louis drew on his tenacity, perseverance, resiliency, and determination and unlocked the door to his destiny of fulfilling the American Dream. In 1994, he reunited with his sister, nephew and brother-in-law in New Jersey.
Louis graduated from New Jersey City University in 2005. His directorial debut was on August 18, 2007. He directed Ala Traka, a feature-length film depicting a dysfunctional Haitian family’s twists and turns. Coaching and directing the actors enhanced his abilities and vision as a director. His experience with the film was both challenging and rewarding. He and Belga Cadet, the screenwriter, worked closely to bring the film to light. He helped the cast of non-professionals and tap into their intuition; as a result, they performed with agility and believability.
Determined to further his education, Louis earned a Master of Science in Organizational Leadership from Mercy College in August 2009. In response to the earthquake in Port-au-Prince, Haiti, he decided to return to higher education once more. As he was pursuing his MPA degree from Baruch College, he took a trip to Haiti. During that trip, he had a revelation from God to address the needs of the community. Working with community leaders and members, he spearheaded efforts to formulate and implement a comprehensive community development plan for economic stability and sustainability.
Shortly thereafter, he founded Economic Development for Cap-Haitien (EDCH), a not-for-profit 501 (c)(3) development resource organization created to revitalize Cap-Haïtien, Haiti’s second largest city, ecologically, socially, and economically.
Currently, Louis is a proud Job Opportunity Specialist. He started working for NYC Human Resources Administration in the Family Independence Department in December 2013. His job responsibilities includeproviding economic support and employment-related services to people in need, and promoting individual and family self-sufficiency. He is a public servant at heart and takes pride in servicing his clients.