Tacoma, WA,
13
September
2016
|
03:00 PM
America/Chicago

Turning Stumbling Blocks into Stepping Stones

Clinton Taylor turned his life around, now helping others do the same

Clinton Taylor was a typical teen until his single mom lost her job. Then, he made choices that put him on a path to self-destruction. Luckily, his mom and other adults stepped up. They helped him make better choices and to take a brighter path.

The oldest of three children, Clinton was raised in a single parent home by his mother. His childhood was spent in some of the poorest, gang-infested neighborhoods in north and northeast Portland, Oregon. This was during the height of the crack epidemic in the early 1980’s.

For years, Clinton managed to avoid joining neighborhood gangs. The one thing he couldn’t avoid, was the heavy influence of street life.

After graduating from high school, Clinton found himself falling into a life of drugs and crime. At the urging of his mother, 19-year-old Clinton joined the United States Army. A few years later, he was in Iraq serving on the front lines in Operation Desert Storm.

Honorably discharged from the military, after five years serving his country, Clinton soon found himself back on the same streets in the same neighborhoods.

“I struggled for years to overcome my battles with drugs, alcohol, and crime,” Clinton shared. “The life I chose caught up with me; I was sent to prison for seven years.”

Once released, Clinton decided to turn his life around. He enrolled in college. He now has three degrees: an Associate’s Degree in General Studies, a Bachelor’s of Science Degree in Human Development and Family Studies, and a Masters of Art Degree in Organizational Leadership.

In 2006, Clinton started his own motivational speaking and training business. Right State of Mind is an organization dedicated to helping others overcome barriers and obstacles in their personal and professional life. Clinton has led training sessions and presentations at all levels of education, drug/alcohol facilities, correctional institutions, and Fortune 500 companies across the country.

Clinton has also written successful training curriculums for life skills programs and workforce development programs. His programs have helped thousands of young people and adults enter education, employment and job programs. These programs, in turn, are putting young adults on the path to economic stability and positive contributions to their communities.

Currently, Clinton is the Program Manager in Tacoma and Seattle, WA, for Financial Beginnings, a nonprofit that empowers Pacific Northwest youth and adults to take control of their financial futures with State Farm support.

Clinton has successfully re-integrated himself into society. He has proven anyone can turn their life’s stumbling blocks into stepping stones.

“I believe the greatest tragedy in life is not the mistakes you make or how many times life knocks you down.” Clinton adds, “I believe the great travesty is to live your entire life and get to the end not knowing why you lived, and never discovering your purpose in life.”