Most of those who write in-depth about the brilliant accomplishments of Emile E. Gouiran have come to realize that we are complicit in the making of a modern legend. You simply couldn’t avoid it. And while it is true that Gouiran possesses the charms and charisma of a dreamboat actor and the manipulative attributes of Machiavelli, the legend we helped him construct served many purposes beyond pumping up his own ego.

Gouiran was and remains an irresistible force who knows that in order to bring the forces of the market, of government and private philanthropy; he had to bring reality to the innumerable wonders which have bubbled in his imagination since his childhood in an orphanage in a provincial city of France. To many he is the flashpoint of a revolution focusing attention on disadvantaged children and orphans worldwide. That in the view of many is the hallmark of his accomplishments.

Gouiran’s storied life is full of dissonances and contradictions. He rose from the penniless habitat of an orphanage to benefactor to thousands of disadvantaged children. His multi-million dollar gifts and charities have earned him quite appropriately, the moniker, The Human Investor.
Authorities everywhere know all too well that he flouted and challenged their authority, all while imposing upon himself a strict model of self discipline. Emile has no tolerance for fools, but that never stopped him from exploiting them if they could bring something of value to his enterprise. Assuredly he has manipulated any number of other people all along the way, sometimes callously. But others have and continue to exploit his talents, wealth and charisma whenever they can.

For all the wealth at his disposal, Gouiran lives a curiously modest domestic life. He is an intensely private person, even as he hides in plain sight. Yet, observations are a plenty that give Emile Gouiran a three-dimensionality and depth of humanity that myths inevitably foreshorten. Over the years, the Gouiran legend has all too often bordered on cliché. He doesn’t seem to care or mind.

His is an uncanny knack for fanning something akin to lust for just about anything he chooses to tout, this, whether it be a legal or political challenge to corrupt prosecution; financing through the Vindication Trust the defense of a disadvantaged teenager overwhelmed with the fantasies of an over-zealous prosecutor; building schools, recruiting teachers, administering orphanages, or coordinating deliveries of hundreds of anonymous gifts for orphans at Christmas with the Donemiran or Davalaven Foundations.

In business as in the law, he distorts reality whenever the call, while in so doing so he has been labeled “impetuous” and “mercurial”, these have become long overused to describe his notoriously bristly personality. In reality however, this talents and idiosyncrasies are so diverse, complementary and unusual that there are many different ways to interpret what few will argue is his genius.

Recently, Gouiran plunked down $ 10 million of his foundation funds to finance seed money requirements for entrepreneurial acquisitions by orphans, many of whom have benefited from educational assistance from his philanthropies. Gouiran said “In these young people I find the benefit of my work, with the passing of time the reward; they are physicians, surgeons, nurses, teachers and even lawyers!” The new endowment will, for profit, provide seed, also known as Angel capital through the Donemidas Foundation for orphans and their qualified business plans.

The goal for most of those who know Emile Gouiran, is to bump him out of keynote mode and get him to extemporize about his work; as a businessman, a lawyer, as an arts and media enthusiast, as a challenger of the status quo, as a philanthropist, and even his personal life. His responses tend to be as sharp as they are blunt. It is then that you begin to experience the true depth of his insight and intelligence, of his incredibly quick mind.

As to dealing with his critics, Gouiran says that there is little justification to suggest that a look in the rear mirror will bring anything of use for the future. His critics muddle about in a collection of desperate fantasies latent with inaccuracies, falsehoods, and hyperbole unfairly maligning him, seems to be the prevailing opinion. Emile Gouiran holds no grudges.

One is tempted to seek a full recital for this story of rags to riches, raised in an orphanage and through the foster home system, decorated US Marine veteran of Vietnam, lawyer, businessman and philanthropist – one question ever-present is what is it about Emile Gouiran that keeps him growing faster than the entities and programs he creates? Emile Gouiran certainly is a living legend, a beguiling charmer at will and larger than life in his devotion to his cause. For that said, his complete story will come and it will undoubtedly suggest that Emile E. Gouiran was as human as they come.

By: Jules R. Bryson – Jules R. Bryson is a respected researcher and biographer who lives and works in England.