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Purpose 360 episode 125: Andre Norman

Ambassador of Hope with Andre Norman


Andre Norman’s early life put him on a path to prison. He worked his way up to being one of the top leaders in the Massachusetts prison system and, when presented with the opportunity to be Number One, he had an epiphany that he was the King of Nowhere.

Thus began his educational journey. Norman took classes to receive his GED, studied law to reduce his sentence, and, when he finally got out, became committed to transforming the prison system and the lives of those within it. He and his team even went to the Lee Correctional Institute shortly after it was faced with the worst riot in America’s prison system in 25 years. After their work concluded, there were zero fights, staff assaults, or use of force or weapons. No longer a King of Nowhere, Norman became an Ambassador of Hope.

Norman is a living example of how purpose can be a powerful journey. Regardless of what stage you are at (as either a company or as an individual), Norman’s story serves as a guide: recognizing a need to change, committing and acting, encouraging others to join, and refreshing purpose so it remains relevant and leads to new opportunities.

Resources + Links:

  • (00:00) – Welcome to Purpose 360
  • (00:12) – Andre Norman
  • (03:27) – By the Numbers
  • (05:52) – Growing Up
  • (11:52) – The Trumpet
  • (16:12) – The Epiphany
  • (19:22) – Bubble of Chaos
  • (21:22) – Finding a New Purpose
  • (23:36) – Helping People
  • (24:54) – Parole
  • (29:22) – When Your Mentor’s Jealous
  • (30:33) – Academy of Hope
  • (34:36) – Demons Catch Up
  • (39:17) – Current Purpose
  • (41:34) – Advice
  • (46:18) – Engaging at the Corporate Level
  • (47:07) – Son and Dad
  • (48:31) – Wrap Up

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Business is an unlikely hero: a force for good working to solve society's most pressing challenges, while boosting bottom line. This is social purpose at work. And it's a dynamic journey.

Purpose 360 is a masterclass in unlocking the potential of social purpose to ignite business and social impact. We illuminate the growing impacts of purpose, from engaging employees and fostering deeper consumer loyalty to inspiring product innovation and increasing market share.