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John and Dr. Denitra Griffin are Co-Founders of the largest black-owned security firm in the United States, AGB (Always Giving Back) Investigative Services. John is the CEO of the AGB Investigative Services and Dr. Griffin is the President. John and Dr. Griffin founded AGB Investigative Services in 2001. They offer expertise in all aspects of security, including physical and cyber. Their mission is to eliminate economic inequities by delivering training and smart services to protect your people, property, and data.

Dr. Griffin is also the CEO and Founder of the AGB Foundation where they give out business internships and college scholarships to young people.

They also own and run The AGB Institute which provides training for people seeking to better themselves as professionals and enhance their life skills. They offer various courses related to security training, business security, professional development, and administrative support.

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Here’s a glimpse of what you’ll learn:

  • John and Dr. Denitra Griffin talk about the people who inspired them growing up and how it shaped their lives
  • Finding the balance between giving your family a good life and instilling a culture of hard work and giving back
  • John shares the dilemma he had between keeping job security and going full time with running their firm, AGB
  • Dr. Griffin and John talk about their roles at AGB and their process for hiring people to help grow their business
  • John talks about use cases of how AGB trainings are used to protect their clients
  • How has the AGB offerings evolved from being an investigative agency to offering all-round security services?
  • Inside AGB’s employee growth: the inspiring stories of Willie Odom and RaJah Welcome
  • John and Dr. Griffin share some of their favorite quotes and books
  • What is the AGB Foundation and what do they do?

In this episode…

John and Dr. Denitra Griffin’s story isn’t your usual grass to grace story. From growing up in the projects for John and with Dr. Griffin wondering at an early age about the possibilities available for her, they knew that they wanted to have the capacity to help other people. This power couple has made it their life’s work to make sure other people from marginalized communities get a chance to be better.

The couple runs a solid, full-service security business that began as a side hustle to become a standout company supporting over a thousand employees and their families. Dr. Griffin and John have picked up many lessons along the way and were happy to sit down with Dr. Jeremy Weisz to unpack some of it.

Listen to John and Dr. Denitra Griffin’, owners of the largest black-owned security firm, AGB Investigative Services, on this episode of Inspired Insider as they share their inspiring story with Dr. Jeremy Weisz. They’ll be talking about the growth of their company and how their offerings have evolved over time, some remarkable stories of their trainings applied in action, the employee growth opportunities in their firm, and what the AGB Foundation is all about.

Resources Mentioned in this episode

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Sponsor for this episode

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Rise25 was cofounded by Dr. Jeremy Weisz and John Corcoran.


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Episode Transcript

Jeremy Weisz

Dr. Jeremy Weisz here, Founder of where I talk with inspirational entrepreneurs and leaders check out past episodes. You know, some of my favorites are so many the the Founder of Atari came on. And Chris Voss came on if you haven’t heard anyone out there has another book Never Split the Difference. He’s an Ex-FBI hostage negotiator, which is specific to this interview talking about security. And you know, he basically talks about his stories negotiating with terrorists. hostage situations, it was crazy. I’m also check out with Chris Ategeka, one of my favorite interviews of all time, founder of two nonprofits to for profits, he grew up in Uganda, seven years old, he became an orphan because both his parents died of AIDS, being the oldest of five children, and he became head of the household. And there’s just so many amazing stories of him actually winning a scholarship to come to the US. He speaks nine languages and ended up getting his PhD at Berkeley. And so check out that episode with Chris Ategeka, just really inspiring. And before I talk about today’s guests, who are all you know, equally inspiring. This episode is brought to you by Rise25, which I co-founded with my business partner, John Corcoran. And what we do is Rise25, we help businesses give to their best relationships and connect to their dream 100 partnerships and give to their relationships in their network by helping you run your podcast. And that’s what we do. Because, you know, I have John and Dr. G, you know, Dr. Griffin here, the number one thing in my life is relationships, hands down. And so I’m always looking at ways to give to my relationships and the thought leadership. So if any of you out there have thought about starting a podcast, that’s what we do. And we’re the easy button for people go to And check it out. And before introducing today’s guest, I want to just a big thank you to two people Lindley White, has over 25 years of experience in corporate communications. And she actually began her career in the White House, she introduced me to Shaunte Robinson, who connected with me these amazing people. Shaunte, if you don’t know, is VP of Commercial Banking for JPMorgan Chase, and in the bank’s Midwest lead for diversity inclusion, and she helps drive innovative programs and pathways. And she helps middle sized companies with a variety of financial services. So if you have questions, you can check her out. And today without further ado, we have co-founders of the largest black owned security firm in the nation, really, John, Dr. G, I think of it when I think of your story. You know, it’s it’s true, amazing story of from single mother homes to starting in a basement over 1000 employees staff to a multi million dollar complex that you serve, and you educate your staff and help other businesses and for people that don’t know who you are AGB investigative was founded as an investigative firm in 2001, by the husband and wife team in front of me, Dr. Denitra and John Griffin, their mission is to eliminate economic inequities, by delivering training in smart services by protecting your people, your property and your data. And they expanded their business to provide a suite of security options, which we’ll talk about, because it’s interesting how you expand a service, right and going physical and cyber security and private investigation and the education training, which I talked about. And you know, this is not a proper introduction without talking about what AGB stands for, which is always giving back and they have a foundation that offers business internships, college scholarships to young people, their services include all of the things I mentioned. So thank you both for joining me.

John Griffin

Thank you. Thank you, sir.

Jeremy Weisz

You know, there’s so many places we could start with this. And I like to start in the beginning because, you know, humble beginnings are always inspiring, and I listened to the episode you guys did with each other, and talked about some of those, those humble beginnings and not having a, like a role model following a pathway. Right. And so talk about, you know, each of your growing up, like from a young age, what did you each one to be from a young age?

Dr. Denitra Griffin

Well, I’ve I, you know, share publicly that when I was growing up my, my point of reference was my mother, um, and whatever she did, or whatever she demonstrated, I was enamored with, with her position, and I wanted to be like my mom. And so at that time, my mom was a bank teller. So I clearly remember having to do an assignment for school. What do you want to be when you grow up and A bank teller was my desire. But as I grew older, um, you know, and kind of went outside the perimeter of my community, which included my school, my church, and my friends, my neighbors, I saw that there were other professions and other people that I can inspire, to grow and model myself after. But at a very young age, my mother was my point of reference who she was who I want it to be. And that’s why it’s so important that we provide access and opportunities to, you know, the underserved or marginalized communities, because you clearly can probably only dream as big as what’s in front of you.

John Griffin

Totally with me. My mom and dad divorced when I was five years old. So my dad’s been part of my life. He’s a great guy, I love him. But my point of reference was really my uncles and my granddad, who we live with. And those were the gentlemen who kind of helped me shape me in terms of protection, because we grew up as more Robert Taylor. ChA Project that was raised in Inglewood. And it’s always been my uncles, and my, and my grandfather, who was the protectors examples, will beat the bad guys up for me. No, and make sure I straight and narrow. My father is a great man. He’s always been a part. But you know, he had married marry my stepmom who I love dearly, and starting a family. So those are my examples.