Andre Norman and Giving Back

Gail Davis, 01 February 2011

Recently, GDA provided another speaker for TCJDC. His name is André Norman. André was an inmate in the United States Prison System. He was a top gang leader when he decided that to take charge of his life and apply his talents to making positive change. He tells the story of his fifteen year odyssey from gang leader to lecturer at Harvard and Tufts Universities and a featured speaker of the London Business School. Talk about taking charge of your life. He has become a youth advocate and is living proof that the extraordinary is possible.

I sometimes tell people that being in the speaking business is like being in the Wizard of Oz and getting to peak behind the curtain. André is the real deal. Whenever we book him for a paid speaking engagement, it is his preference is to come in a day early or stay a day later in order to speak at a prison, jail, or juvenile detention center as his way of giving back. He does not charge extra for doing this. Andre believes this is his responsibility and it keeps him grounded.

And while your business plans, budgets and strategy are already in place for 2011, I encourage everyone to look at the year ahead and ask how you can make a difference - whether it is on the stage or in your community. We all need each other. Here’s to a connected and blessed New Year.