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alphonso mayo

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Learn more about Alphonso Mayo's mission to
help underprivileged youth in the
Baltimore metro area.
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The Promise tells the incredible true story of Alphonso Mayo, a young American African born in 1987, amid the crack epidemic, to an addict mother who abandoned him in a drug house when he was six months old. Thankfully, his uncle and aunt came to his rescue, and he spent the rest of his childhood in a home filled with drugs and violence. At the age of five, Alphonso witnessed his first murder, and a year later, he lost his first friend to gun violence. Throughout childhood, he suffered physical abuse and witnessed many of his family members wasting away from drugs and alcohol.

His relationship with his father was fierce, with beatings and psychological games taking place when his father was out of prison. Alphonso, surrounded by violence in his school, home, and on the streets, became violent himself. By thirteen, he had been suspended from school over 100 times, primarily for fighting. His overwhelming suspensions meant he was unable to read or write. He was eventually diagnosed with a severe learning disability, and it seemed his path in life was predetermined: he would become a violent criminal like the men in his community and his father.

Despite these crippling setbacks, The Promise is a story of triumph and hope. With the help of unlikely teachers, including a drug kingpin, a football coach, a grandmother, and a vigilante cop, Alphonso was able to turn his life around. At fourteen, he began the difficult task of learning to read and control his violent impulses. He eventually graduated high school and college and was able to come to terms with his past. Today, Alphonso helps other kids escape similar childhoods. His perspective on life in Baltimore provides invaluable lessons for anyone seeking to understand America's troubled race relations, inner-city poverty, the war on drugs, and our broken police culture. Furthermore, The Promise is a powerful portrait of one of America's most impoverished black communities and our nation's failure to care for at-risk children.


Awards and Recognitions

- 2023 Healing City Baltimore Unsung Hero Lifetime Impact Award 
- 2022 Young Alumni Award at Stevenson University
- 2020 Baltipreneurs Accelerator Program
- 2020 Baltimore Young Leaders Professional Development Program
- 2019 Leadership Open Society Fellowship
- 2019 Leadership in Residence Fellowship CBMA
- 2019 Champion in Life Award     
- 2018 Baltimore Homecoming Hero
- 2018 Practitioner Leadership Institute  Fellowship
- 2018 Inspiring Voices Awards
- 2014 Dorothy Stang Award, Graduation    
- 2014 The National Society of Leadership and Success Spring

Mayo's Mission

Alphonso Mayo is on a mission to impact the lives of millions of people around the world. He is dedicated to empowering individuals, especially the youth, to unlock their full potential and achieve their dreams.

Through his powerful motivational speeches, engaging self-development and leadership workshops, and insightful life lessons, Alphonso inspires people to take charge of their lives and pursue their passions relentlessly. His goal is to create a ripple effect of positive change, inspiring millions to live their best lives and make a difference in the world.

" When we accept the person God has called us to be, we all deeply desired to have someone like that when we were younger. "