The Other American Dream: How a Gay Immigrant Fought to Live His Truth and Found Success

"I grew up in a place where I was not meant to exist—a place where my identity as a gay male was contrary to Middle Eastern culture, standards and faith. I grew up in a home filled with dysfunction and strife. I carried the weight of all of that on my shoulders, . . . but if you carry a weight constantly, eventually you become stronger." —Harma Hartouni

Harma Hartouni was born into an Armenian Orthodox Christian family in Los Angeles, but when he was 1 month old, his family moved to Iran, where he was raised. While there, he was involved in an accident, breaking both legs and requiring a 12-month recovery. When he moved back to Los Angeles, he came out as a gay man. Today, he is a self-made entrepreneur, owner of a real estate company with hundreds of agents and more than $1 billion in sales volume in 2019. He is married and lives in Los Angeles with his husband (an executive at Disney), three children, three dogs and two turtles.

Join us for an in-depth conversation with Hartouni to discuss his life, troubles and perseverance, and success, which he reveals in his new book Getting Back Up: A Story of Resilience, Self-Acceptance and Success.


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Image - Harma Hartouni
Harma Hartouni
Entrepreneur; Author, Getting Back Up: A Story of Resilience, Self-Acceptance and Success
Image - Michelle Meow
Michelle Meow
Producer and Host, "The Michelle Meow Show," KBCW/KPIX TV and Podcast; Member, Commonwealth Club Board of Governors; Twitter @msmichellemeow—Co-Host
Image - John Zipperer
John Zipperer
Producer and Host, Week to Week Political Roundtable; Vice President of Media & Editorial, The Commonwealth Club—Co-Host