Teo A. Babun
Teo A. Babun
Babun in January 2017
Teofilo I Babun
|Nationality||Cuban and American|
|Alma mater||Michigan Technological University|
|Occupation||Writer and Investor|
|Known for||Expertise on Cuba's infrastructure.|
|Awards||Outstanding Young Alumni from Michigan Technological University 1981
Honorary Doctorate in Letters from Miami International Seminary 1991Inducted into the Electrical and Computer Engineering Academy of MTU 2007
|Website||Outreach Aid to the Americas|
Teo A. Babun is a Cuban-American businessman and evangelical philanthropist. He is the founder of BG Consultants and Cuba-Caribbean Development Co. and also the head of Outreach Aid to the Americas (OAA) and AmericasRelief.
Babun's grandparents were born in Bethlehem. His father became a major financial supporter of the Cuban Revolution. Though born in Cuba, Babun has spent most of his childhood and life as a Cuban exile in the United States. Babun's father was tried in a 1960 Communist show trial, intended to confiscate all of his property and belongings. Before the verdict was read in his trial, he escaped to Miami with his wife. Cuban government later expelled the rest of the family to the United States when Babun was 11 years old. They were deported on June 1, 1960 via the Ignacio Agramonte International Airport. Their family home became a residence for Raul Castro, future president of Cuba after the retirement of Fidel Castro. The Cuban Government confiscated the Babun family holdings and properties consisting of a cement plant, farms, maritime, lumber/timber, minerals and other interests after their escape.
Babun lived in Florida until he attended university at Michigan Technological University (MTU), graduating in 1972 with bachelor’s degrees in electrical engineering and business engineering administration. In 2002 he received an Honorary Doctorate in Letters from Miami International Seminary (MTU). He also later received a PhD from non-accredited Vision International University. In 2007 was inducted into the Electrical Engineering and Computer Engineering Academy at MTU.
2000 return visit to Cuba
Babun returned to Cuba in October 2000, as an "official observant" to open-air Evangelical Celebrations instituted after the visit of Pope John Paul II in 1999. Following this visit Babun was asked by government officials not to return to Cuba, due to the reaction of the public to his evangelical work.
Babun began his professional career manufacturing electrical components in Wisconsin and Connecticut. He founded General Electro-Components in 1980 to manufacture electrical relays and solenoids under the brand "Line Electric", serving as president and CEO. In 1981 he developed the TO-5, then known as "The World's Smallest Solenoid." In 1987 he moved back to South Florida in order to work for his father's company, Bahamas Line shipping company. In 1990 Babun founded the Cuba Investment Fund, in order to accumulate investment funds and strategies for when the United States lifts the economic embargo they have levied on the island.
Babun is the founder and head of BG Consultants, located in Miami. He is also the founder and managing partner of the Miami consulting firm Cuba-Caribbean Development Co, a division of his Babun Group Consulting that advises companies on the potential of a future free market in Cuba. In his role with the for-profit company he has advocated for a change in Cuban-US economic relations. Babun's clients have included Baskin Robbins and Royal Caribbean Cruises.
In 1992 he founded the Babun Shipping Corporation in Miami under his holding company T. Babun Co. He was also the founder of Cuba Claims Registry Assistance LLP, a property registry for Cuban exiles to establish claims upon land and other property that was confiscated.
Ministry, Activism, and Controversies
In 1994 Babun decided to dedicate the rest of his life to humanitarian ministry in support of vulnerable persons in the region and the emerging church in Cuba. He founded Outreach Aid to the Americas, Inc. (OAA). The organization responds to the needs of the vulnerable people in the Americas Region through relief and development programs. OAA thru its faith-based initiative “EchoCuba” uses methodologies, tools, and training modules to help advance entrepreneurship, organizational skills, education, religious freedoms, and social services in Cuba.
In 2016 OAA expanded services to Central America, the Caribbean Islands, including Puerto Rico and Southern Mexico to send aid from the US to faith-based organizations and provide business development products to encourage small business creation. As the spokesperson for the organization, he has advocated for religious freedoms, small business ownership as one of the keys to creating the conditions necessary for reducing poverty  in Central America, and for more effective disaster resiliency programs  to save lives in countries affected by hurricanes.
On February 12, 2019 he was accused of being a “public enemy and a mercenary” of Cuba by Granma, Cuba’s official publication of the Central Committee of the Communist Party. He was charged with trying to create discord among Evangelical Church Leaders in Cuba by “providing them with misleading information and enticing them to commit acts of disobedience with promises of humanitarian aid.” In interviews with Radio & Television Marti, Babun defended his efforts to unify the Evangelical Church Leaders around a shared advocacy campaign to obtain greater Freedom of Religion and Belief language in a new constitution scheduled for a referendum on February 24, 2019.
Babun is the author of The Business Guide to Cuba,. The Sun-Sentinel stated that for "foreign companies - and to U.S. entrepreneurs who want the lay of the land ahead of normalized relations - Babun's book provides precious detail for strategic planning".
He also co-authored the book The Cuban Revolution: The Years of Promise with Victor Andres Triay in 2005, using photographs of the Cuban Revolution owned by Babun's father used as the primary focus of the book. José Manuel García reviewed the book in the Arizona Journal of Hispanic Cultural Studies, calling the book "an exceptionally significant contribution to Cuban history through the power of photography". Babun has also self-published the book Dealing with Your Personal Crisis, which presents Christian coping methods for personal traumas.
- "Cuba Expert Series - Interview with Dr. Teo Babun". Havana Journal. December 20, 2010. Retrieved July 8, 2013.
- David Beard (October 28, 1996). "Book: Be Ready To Pounce Pon Post-castro Cuba". Sun-Sentinel. Retrieved July 8, 2013.
- Oskar Garcia (May 10, 2007). "Scholars weigh claims over Cuban assets". USA Today. Retrieved July 8, 2013.
- "Teo A. Babun, Class of 1972". Michigan Technological University. Retrieved July 8, 2013.
- "2007 ECE Academy". Retrieved July 10, 2013.
- "Potential investors see opportunity for island in free-market economy". Fort Worth Star-Telegram. December 5, 1993. Retrieved July 8, 2013.
- "Cuba rejects U.S. storm assessment team offer". Miami Herald. September 11, 2008. Retrieved July 8, 2013.
- Charles Herman (August 3, 2006). "Cuba: Open for Business?". ABC News. Retrieved July 8, 2013.
- Doreen Hemlock (September 6, 1998). "EMBARGO GETTING A BIT WEAKER; FIRST MAJOR U.S.-CUBA MEETING THIS WEEK SEEKS TO BOOST TRADE". Sun-Sentinel. Retrieved July 8, 2013.
- Richard Lacayo (July 17, 1995). "Long-Distance Calling". Time Magazine. Retrieved July 8, 2013.
- Kevin Gale (June 23, 2003). "Cuba's economic breakdown". South Florida Business Journal. Retrieved July 8, 2013.
- "MIAMI SHIPPING FIRM FILES CHAPTER 7 BANKRUPTCY". Miami Herald. November 23, 1994. Retrieved July 8, 2013.
- Steve Harrigan (August 29, 1999). "Cuban-Americans register properties seized after revolution". CNN. Retrieved July 8, 2013.
- "Senators draw up dissident aid plan: Bill sets $100 million over four years". Washington Times. May 17, 2001. Retrieved July 8, 2013.
- Jeff Sellers (July 10, 2002). "Freedom's Wedge". Christianity Today. Retrieved July 8, 2013.
- "Cubans Learning the Value of Free Market Economy". Christian Broadcasting Network. 2011. Retrieved July 8, 2013.
- "Teo A. Babun and James F. Smith". Retrieved July 8, 2013.
- "¿Quién es Teo Babún y qué persigue contra Cuba?". Granma. February 1, 2019. Retrieved February 19, 2019.
- "Chi è Teo Babún cosa persegue contro Cuba?". Cuba Informazione. February 2, 2019. Retrieved February 19, 2019.
- "¿Por qué 'Granma' ataca a la asociación Alcance Humanitario Evangélico?". Diario de Cuba. February 13, 2019. Retrieved February 19, 2019.
- Teo Babun (January 21, 2019). "Support Cubans who demand Freedom of Religion in Cuba". Miami Herald. Retrieved February 19, 2019.
- Teo Babun (January 21, 2019). "Unmasking Cuba's Religious Deception". Miami Herald. Retrieved February 19, 2019.
- Teo Babun (March 1, 2019). "Cuba's new constitution fails to guarantee fundamental freedoms. Cubans saw through the charade". Miami Herald. Retrieved March 4, 2019.
- José Manuel García (2006). "The Cuban Revolution: Years of Promise (review)". Arizona Journal of Hispanic Cultural Studies. p. 297. Retrieved July 8, 2013.
- "Episode Detail: Teo Babun: The Cuban Revolution: Years of Promise - History on Book TV". TV Guide. Retrieved July 8, 2013.
- "Book Discussion on The Cuban Revolution: Years of Promise". Book TV. 29 January 2006. Retrieved April 19, 2015.
- Teo A. Babun Jr. (2004). Dealing with Your Personal Crisis. Babun Publishing Group. Retrieved July 8, 2013.
- Teo A. Babun Jr. (August 9, 1993). "Legalized Dollar May Not Be Saviour Of Cuban Economy". Chicago Tribune. Retrieved July 8, 2013.
- Teo Babun (March 26, 2012). "How Pope Benedict could shape religious freedom in Cuba". Washington Post. Retrieved July 8, 2013.
- Teo Babun (January 22, 2020). "Cuba stepped up its persecution of people of faith. Will it get worse in 2020?". Miami Herald. Retrieved February 4, 2020.
- Teo Babun (November 14, 2019). "Cuba viola el derecho a la libertad de religión y circulación". El Nuevo Herald. Retrieved February 4, 2020.