Andre Norman AKA The Ambassador Of Hope is a motivational speaker, personal coach, trainer, social advocate, and author. He is considered to be the #1 prison success story in the world, who overcame poverty, gangs, and prison to become an International Speaker and Harvard Fellow. Norman is the author of the book Ambassador of Hope: Turning Poverty and Prison into a Purpose-Driven Life.

Where did you grow up and what was your childhood like? Did you have any particular experiences/stories that shaped your adult life?

Boston, MA.

My childhood was shaped by my father teaching me it’s ok to quit.

Riding the school buses as they were stoned.

Being placed in the dummy class for being able to read.

What is something you wish you would’ve realized earlier in your life?

That my gift of playing the trumpet was my way out.

What are bad recommendations you hear in your profession or area of expertise?

Will power is enough to fix things.

That the world will forgive you completely.

Just get a college degree and that will fix everything.

Tell me about one of the darker periods you’ve experienced in life. How you came out of it and what you learned from it?

I was being held in prison on 24-hour lockdown, I had a dream and all of my friends and family laughed at me,  I found a mentor and stuck to my plan/dream.

What is one thing that you do that you feel has been the biggest contributor to your success so far?

By far the biggest thing would be my mentors – I have over 40 of them now.

What is your morning routine?

I listen to audible books, take a walk, send my son a message at 6:00 am.

What habit or behavior that you have pursued for a few years has most improved your life?

Reflective listening, learning to listen to others has made me much better.

What are your strategies for being productive and using your time most efficiently?

Be to others that in which people are being for you. I have mentors so I mentor, I have sponsors so I sponsor others, etc. 

What book(s) have influenced your life the most? Why?

As a Man Thinketh by James Allen – taught me how to understand my thinking process.

The Autobiography of Malcolm X  – showed me that I could start out as he did and make it.

Do you have any quotes you live by or think of often?

“When quitting is not an option winning is assured”.

I became successful when I believed it, not when others did.