Biography

Andre Norman is the reason to believe in second chances. He grew up in a challenging situation witnessing domestic violence, was a victim of the Boston Busing Crisis, and was fatherless by the first grade. Raised by a single mom with six kids, Andre’s mom did her best to keep things afloat, leaving Andre with too much idle time.

At his new elementary school, it was discovered that Andre was illiterate. The Administrators placed Andre in what was effectively known as the “dummy class.” That is until Mrs. Oliver intervened in third grade.

It wasn’t until Andre started middle school that he fully understood his family was poor. He was tormented by the other students for wearing dirty clothes and receiving free lunch. Quitting school was not an option, so Andre began working for the marijuana dealers in the local park.

While in high school Andre went full-time into gang life. He was arrested and received a 100-year prison sentence.

When Andre entered the prison, he double-downed on gang life, following in the footsteps of the wrong path that so many had walked before him. Andre rose the ranks of the prison gang.

Andre was placed in solitary confinement for 2.5 years. It was during this time that he had an epiphany. Realizing that he was the King of Nowhere, Andre crafted a plan to go from solitary confinement to Harvard University. Over the next eight years, Andre worked 20-hour days to make this plan a reality. Teaching himself how to read and write. His transformation included studying the law and attending anger management classes. Mentors became a key part of his transformation.

Winning his appeal and armed with a GED, Andre walked out of prison in 1999 after serving 14 years of a 100-year prison sentence. 

Within 90 minutes of his release, Andre went from the prison to the parole office to the juvenile center, talking to a room full of young black boys about why they were locked up.

Turning his experiences into programs he created the Violence Interrupters & Proven Risk Youth model. Andre was a contributor to the White House Office of Faith-Based and Community Initiatives, created by President George W. Bush. He went on to become one of the nation’s leading experts in gang and prison violence intervention.

In 2018 Andre was called on to create a program after one of the most deadly prison riots in American History.

From working with child soldiers in Monrovia, Liberia, to suburban families throughout America on the opioid crisis. Andre’s talents have turned trauma into triumphs.

Since 2001, Norman has been working with the London Business School Executive Education Department, for clients including Prudential Insurance (UK), Bovis Lend Lease, (AUS), Deutsche Bank (Germany), British Petroleum, UK), Ericsson (Sweden), DANONE (France), KPMG and more.

In 2016, Andre received a fellowship to Harvard Law School for his help ending the protest in Ferguson, Missouri.

Today, Andre Norman is a sought-after advisor for companies dealing with social justice issues, community engagement & leadership. Also helping city and state governing officials experiencing violence in their jurisdiction. On top of his successful advising business, he is one of the most impactful international speakers. He collaborates with various notable organizations.

  • United Nations
  • Genius Network
  • Department of Corrections
  • Entrepreneurs Organization
  • Young Presidents Organization
  • Chief Executives for Corporate Purpose

In 2020, Andre released his first of two books titled, Ambassador of Hope: Turning Poverty and Prison into a Purpose-Driven Life, which continues to spark the conversation that if Andre can achieve all that he has with such odds against him, then what is truly holding anyone
back?

His focus on inclusion and making an impact is why he has been selected as an advisor to several corporations and a Board of Director member.

In 2021 he made history when the prison system that he was sentenced to, hired him to design a program and mentor other inmates where he once lived. Yet again proving that the impossible is possible with Andre Norman.

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Andre is one of the most impactful speakers I’ve ever seen. I’ve seen him speak live 3 times now – and each time I’m left speechless and standing to applaud. He once left an entire room of CEOs crying, his impact was so strong.
– Cameron Herold, Founder of COO Alliance and Author of Double Double

Booksby Andre Norman

Ambassador of Hope: Turning Poverty and Prison into a Purpose-Driven Life

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