“Success Strategist” Jonathan Edison is one of the most compelling thought leaders and Motivational Business Speakers today. As an expert in human development he delivers strategies, methods and tools filled with insight and humor that consistently move people and organizations to their highest potential. His personal Motto is “ Results DON”T LIE, people do!”
Growing up in an environment that was a prescription for failure, young John John—his grandmother’s affectionate nickname for him—faced many hardships. After exposing him to drugs and violence, his mother was removed from the household by the Department of Social Services when he was five years old. Two years later Jonathan’s father left to start a new family on another side of town. Then, his grandmother Cloraine that took on the challenge of raising him died of cancer when he was 14.
Now homeless, Jonathan was forced to take up residence in his aunt’s basement. To afford the $50.00 a month in rent and his portion of the electric bill, he worked a full-time job as a dishwasher/bus boy at Chili’s Grill and Bar in the evenings and on weekends. He graduated from high school with a 1.63 grade point average and completed his first year of college with a 0.62 GPA before dropping out completely.
Instead of becoming another statistic, Jonathan found the courage he needed within himself to rise above adversity. He enrolled in remedial classes at Wayne County Community College. In 1993, Jonathan graduated with an associate’s degree as a part of the Urban Teacher Program. In 1995 Jonathan continued his education at Wayne State University, earning a bachelor’s of science degree k-8 all subjects. In addition to his bachelors he completed his a Master’s degree in Educational Leadership and Supervision in only 3 semesters. During college, Jonathan worked as a bus attendant, waiter, gas station attendant and often slept in his car because he was homeless for a period of time so that he could hold down his jobs and attend classes.
After teaching for four years, at age 27 Jonathan became the youngest assistant principal in the history of Detroit Public Schools. In 2002, he was named Wayne County Spokesman for Success. Then, along with hundreds of other dedicated educators, Jonathan was fired. With no savings, clients or plan, in 2004 he launched Edison Speaks International, a motivational and training development company. Since then Jonathan has shared his “Strategies for Success” with over 1,000 audiences and 2 Million people, authored 10 books sold over 50,000 books all over the world and has spoken in all 50 States.
After 10 years of speaking on the Motivational circuit Jonathan decided to upgrade himself to transcend the title of Motivational Speaker and evolve into a “Success Strategist”. Currently, he is a student at Harvard University Extension School studying the Psychology of Human Performance.
He is also serves as Chairman for two National non-profits I’m Rocking These Socks Foundation which provides 1,000,000 pairs of socks a year to the homeless. John Johns Reading Foundation that works tirelessly to promote literacy amongst student’s Pre K-3
Jonathan’s two favorite quotes are by Dr. MLK jr.
“If a man has been called to be a street sweeper, he should sweep streets like Beethoven composed music, he should sweep streets like Shakespeare wrote poetry, he should sweet streets like Michael Angelo painted, he should sweep streets until all the heavens and earth should stop and pause and say here lived a street sweeper and he did his job well.”
“Life’s most pressing question is what are you doing for others”