As a 47-year-old ex-gang member and drug dealer Leonardo lived the street life that almost cost him everything. After serving his first prison term he returned to the streets worse off than when he left only to find himself going back to prison for a very long time and realizing that the streets had lied to him all these years and there was no pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. At that point, he started seeking for the keys to success and began preparing himself for a new start. Upon release, he began trying to give back to the communities he helped destroy though ministry and speaking. He has now been able to reach out to thousands of people in prisons and schools all over the country teaching how to make better decisions and detailing the consequences of bad decision making. With topics including: gangs, drugs and violence as well as motivational topics on success and personal development Leonardo has been able to reach the youth in our communities by “keeping it real” in a manner that the youth can understand and relate to as well as educating teachers and parents about the influences these troubled kids are experiencing. Teaching self-awareness as a way to lead individuals to make better decisions. Leonardo spent over 20 years as an active gang member and over 13 years in some of Illinois most violent prisons. Having taught himself law while in prison he was able to win early release and reentered society as a very successful paralegal for the last 10 years. He has a very loving and supportive family. He owns his own home and several businesses and uses those facts to encourage the youth that success is possible no matter your past or background with positive decision making and real belief in self. He also coaches children in martial arts and volunteers his time to coach wrestlers and speak to athletic teams about planning for success in sports.