Sheldon Mills is the Chair of Trustees for Stonewall, he's also interim Executive Director of Strategy and Competition at the Financial Conduct Authority.
A graduate of King's College London, Cardiff -born Sheldon was told he'd never attend the university he dreamed of by a teacher at his school, a gut punch that he shares on the one-off BBC Wales documentary, Black & Welsh, which airs on Monday, October 26.
But Sheldon's response was fearless and set him on a path of success that has seen him qualify as a solicitor, oversee the delivery of UK merger control across the entire economy and for the strategic design and implementation of the new UK State Aid regime and support Stonewall's ground-breaking partnership with UK Black Pride.
Documentary-maker Liana Stewart asks Sheldon, 44, why he went down the law route. Sheldon, who grew up in the Ely area of the Welsh capital and is Stonewall's longest-standing trustee, said that his interest was piqued as he worked in his school library when he found a box of university prospectuses.
"I said 'miss' what's this. She said we didn't need them. I spent hours opening all these boxes and reading every prospectus and the one which I really liked was A5 not A4, it was King's College, I'll never forget it.
"And I had a history class with this teacher, who shall remain nameless, and I said 'sir, I'm going to be a lawyer and I'm going to go to King's College London' and he said; 'you will never go to King's College, Sheldon.'
"I said 'yes I will,' and I did."
He added that it was that put down that has pushed him on to be a visible, black, gay role model for black boys.
"Role models shouldn’t just be movie stars or singers or athletes. They need to have role models who are politicians, lawyers, accountants, doctors and so on. Because those are the people, actually, who make up society.”
Sheldon also speaks about the embrace of Cardiff's black community and how is has helped him be the confident gay, black man he is today.
"As a gay man, I was out, I was so out it was ridiculous," he said.
"Whatever anybody says about black people and what they say about gay people - and in those days it was a lot - I was held by my black community as a gay man at 16 or 17. I had no homophobia at all."
Black & Welsh was made by Butetown's Liana Stewart and brings to the screen the experiences of what it means to be black and Welsh.
The programme weaves together a collection of emotional and engaging stories from across the nation, from Newport to Snowdonia.
Among others, Liana speaks to 19-year-old international model Laiqah Omar, YouTuber Gonth, Newport actor Alexandria Riley (The Tuckers, End of the F***ing World, In My Skin), Wales’ first Rastafarian beekeeper Phillip Henry, Gaynor Legall, the first black female city councillor in Wales, comedian Leroy Brito and a 92-year-old whose arrival in Wales predates the Empire Windrush.
The show also features eight-year-old twins Venice and Monet who proudly sing Welsh hymns and giggle when they're asked if 'everyone in Wales should speak Welsh' saying it was their 'secret language.'
In a heart-wrenching moment Liana is discussing the issue of racism in general with all contributors and the adults run through the awful insults they've encountered. Monet gets upset by the thought of the 'N-word' during the conversation, sister Venice tenderly comforts her sister as she says it's the 'naughtiest swear word in the world.'
"Does it upset you because you're black and it's not a nice world for black people?" Liane asks, as she comforts the pair. Monet nods in agreement.
Liane concludes her documentary by saying: "This has been the most important film I have ever made. I'm hoping people will hear our truth and recognise we are just as Welsh as the next person - it just so happens we're black."
Black & Welsh is on BBC Wales on Monday, October 26 at 8.30pm and you can catch it on BBC iPlayer