Thomas ‘T.J.’ Loftin is today’s most prolific speaker on gentrification and economics. As at-risk communities, threatened by gentrification and corporate expansion become increasingly gentrified across the United States, small business owners and long-time residents become displaced. T.J. Loftin has released a book to equip individuals in these communities with strategies and solutions to stop or monetize gentrification in their neighborhoods.Over a decade ago, T.J. Loftin exposed the Antelope Valley, California Section 8 scandal and advocated for area residents. Soon after, Loftin was among the first to bring attention to the gentrification of South Los Angeles and how the two were connected.
Loftin was first to recognize the hidden agenda behind the proposed project to expand Silicone Valley that would have corporations setting up in the Black neighborhoods to create the new Silicone Beach. A project that would uproot residents from the entire area of South Los Angeles and ultimately force millions of Black families out of Southern California. T.J. Loftin recognized these initiatives in their infancy as a national agenda to dismantle Black communities. A seasoned investor, he predicted this move would potentially have a domino effect that would uproot families, disrupt businesses, and endanger homeownership nationally.
Thomas ‘T.J.’ Loftin is a celebrity car builder, namely one of the pioneers of the Lowrider automotive brand made popular in the early 1990s by music videos, movies, television shows, commercials, and gaming software. Loftin is a multidisciplinary entrepreneur with holdings in real estate, land development, construction, manufacturing, inventor, and property management. Over the years, T.J. has also acquired multiple brick-and-mortar businesses in Los Angeles.At the time, Loftin owned property in Palmdale, CA. The sudden increase in Section 8 vouchers to the Palmdale area, all relocating from the Jordan Down Housing Projects and other South Los Angeles public housing developments, alerted Loftin and roused his suspicions. After investigating, T.J. immediately notified his community at large of the threats they would soon be facing from corporations and billionaire titans, like Elon Musk, CEO and chief investor of Tesla Motors, SpaceX, Solar City, and The Boring Company that recently moved into LA County.
He began organizing and calling out the injustices as they occurred. T.J. became a business adviser to the world-renowned herbalist and holistic healer, Dr. Sebi for years prior to his death. Dr. Sebi himself brought it to his attention that what was happening in South Los Angeles was a mere microcosm of what was occurring globally. (Side note: Prior to the rapper’s untimely death, Nipsey Hussle began filming a documentary on the late, Honduran herbalist, Dr. Sebi. Later, actor, entertainer, and television host Nick Cannon committed to completing the project.) Dr. Sebi advised T.J. to travel the world to teach others the steps he had taken in his battle against gentrification in Leimert Park and South Los Angeles, which caught the attention of Al Jazeera’s News.
Inspired by Dr. Sebi to share this information with as many communities as possible, T.J. Loftin set out. He became an adviser to the Compton and Inglewood school districts, recommending changes in the curriculum that would prepare students for jobs and entrepreneurship opportunities that would soon be available due to large corporations moving in and new construction projects. From there, he went on a national tour of speaking engagements, twenty-four (24) states and then published the blueprint to fighting corporate expansion and gentrification in underserved, at-risk communities here in the United States and abroad.
As our nation’s foremost expert on gentrification and real estate, T.J. Loftin continues to tour the U.S., speaking and offering seminars to educate community leaders, activists, homeowners, and business owners worldwide, using strategies and solutions outlined in his book. The revised edition of Monetizing Gentrification: Building Black Ownership is an update of his 2018 best-selling guide. Newly released with updated content, it is available exclusively on his website, www.tjloftin.com