Prison Consultant Shows Success After Prison
Sunday, June 14 through Saturday, June 20, 2015
Sunday, June 14 (Degreed)
Today I recorded the first three videos for the Earning Freedom Mastermind course that I’ll host on the Degreed platform. My time may be stretched thin, but I think that it developing this platform will be a good investment. People who access Degreed will be able to download the lesson plans and watch videos I produce to guide them through. This effort may lead to an interactive Mastermind program, one where I can teach strategies that allow participants to reach a higher potential, regardless of what challenges they face now. Breaking through challenges and into a better life begins with identifying values, setting goals, and then executing the principles of this Mastermind program each day. I’ll need to invest dozens of hours more to complete this exercise, but I think developing the program will advance the process.
Monday, June 15 (LA Probation)
Today I left my home early for a long day. The first stop was a visit to a school in Santa Ana. Keith Laszlo teaches at the school and uses the Earning Freedom program as a resource. Every few months I visit the school and share my story with the students. It’s my goal to motivate and encourage them to choose a better life, one that will lead them out of the criminal justice system and launch them onto a more successful journey. Then I visited Deco Lighting, an innovative and growing company in Commerce, California. I took a tour of the plant and felt inspired by the team of more than 100 people. They worked in unison to build LED products, and I spoke with the president about hiring formerly incarcerated individuals. Then I drove downtown to meet with a magistrate judge, a prosecutor, a public defender, and others about the value the Earning Freedom MasterMind program could offer to a diversion program known as CASA. Finally, I drove to the Beverly Hills area to meet with a lawyer who is working to produce a film or television project on my story. I didn’t return home until after 8:00 in the evening.
Tuesday, June 16 (DECO Lighting)
I drafted an article today about my tour of Deco Lighting. I’m striving to create more job opportunities for formerly incarcerated individuals. One of the founders of Deco, Ben Pouladian allowed me to tour the plant yesterday and we spoke about opportunities to offer job opportunities to formerly incarcerated individuals. Through our Earning Freedom program, individuals can learn the soft skills that employers want to see in the people they bring on board. The process is quite simple. Those who advance through our program work on an independent-study basis through our Mastermind program. Then they undertake ongoing training by listening to our podcasts that profile other formerly incarcerated individuals who emerged successfully. I intend to publish the article that I drafted in the Huffington Post. First, I’ll send the draft to Deco Lighting to see whether the team is in agreement with what I wrote.
Wednesday, June 17 (San Diego Prep)
This morning I woke early to design a poster. I wanted the poster to illustrate the amount of work that I’ve done over the decades. Carole helped me. I visited my author page at Amazon.com. The page features many of the books that I wrote, a brief biography and other content. I visited my YouTube channel and captured a screenshot from the PBS episode that features my image alongside the famous anchor Judy Woodruff. Then I wrote a brief caption that included an endorsement from a former AUSA, and placed it inside of a textbox that matched my branded colors. I sent the digital image to FedEx and a couple of hours I had my poster. I would use the poster alongside other banners I have. Together, they would announce the products and services I offer for defendants who must prepare for sentencing hearings.
Thursday, June 18 (Networking)
For the second day, I drove down to San Diego to attend a conference that the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers sponsored. The conference was specifically for attorneys who practiced white-collar law. I purchased a booth and set up all of my banners and poster. Then I sat at the booth for the entire day, talking with defense attorneys who stopped by. My goal was to meet and interact with defense attorneys who may recommend my products and services to clients they serve who face imprisonment. Hosting a booth at the conference cost me a total of about $1,400 in hard costs, plus my time. I hope to recoup the investment over the course of the next several months by finding at least a couple of clients that the attorneys may recommend.
Friday, June 19 (Judge)
Today was the final day of the NACDL conference for white collar criminal defense attorneys. I attended one of the panel discussions that interested me. It concerned sentencing. I listened to a former US Attorney, a former AUSA, a public defender, and a federal judge. Each discussed their perspectives on what steps a defendant or defense attorney could take to improve the outcomes of sentencing. From that panel, I took away the importance of the defendant’s allocution. To the extent that a defendant can articulate his remorse, the reason for his actions, what he learned from the experience, and why he will never appear before a court of law as a defendant again, he advances prospects for a lower sentencing. I provide a service to defendants that help them, so I must work hard to market the service going forward. Time will tell whether attending this conference was helpful.
Saturday, June 20 (Series with Miguel)
Today I had a busy day. As soon as I got to my office I started a podcast with Miguel Zaldivar. He served a 30-year sentence in federal prison. The podcast went well. By the time I was 20 minutes into it, I realized that I wanted to gather much more information. I asked Miguel to stay with me through a follow up. We ended up recording a series of five interviews that flow quite well. I’m going to package them and send them to Miguel. We can use them, I think, as a tool that will help more people prepare for their successful return to society. The first podcast offers insight into Miguel’s background and journey through prison. The second podcast discusses his initial return to society. The third podcast discusses the important concepts of housing, relationships, credit, and establishing a life in society after imprisonment. The fourth podcast discusses Miguel’s plans for the future. And in the fifth podcast, I suggest that Miguel join the PrisonProfessor team and that we use this service to inspire others.
Miles for week: 8.61
Miles for month: 15.05
Miles run for year: 392.19
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