Shawn Harper and his five siblings were raised by their single mother in Columbus, Ohio. Greeted daily by the hard knock life, he learned to survive the trenches of a rough, impoverished south side neighborhood. However, Shawn’s environment was not the only challenge he faced as a child. He also lives with four disabilities, including dyslexia and a speech impediment.
Teachers sneered at Shawn, blatantly telling him he was not “college material.” Despite suffering from his disabilities, a debilitating stutter and lack of support at school, he was determined to fit in and began playing football in high school. During his senior year, the coach at North Iowa Community College was looking for athletes who had potential, so Shawn’s high school coach recommended him. He graduated 154th (last) in his class, did not receive scholarships to assist him financially, and there were no guarantees for Shawn – but just having an opportunity at the junior college was all he needed to explode and change his entire life forever.
Shawn’s dream began at North Iowa Community College. While playing football for the junior college, he envisioned himself playing in the National Football League (NFL). For inspiration, he placed three letters above his headboard, “NFL”, and he continued to apply himself to his studies. Shawn was then recruited by Indiana University (IU). Having a successful football career at IU and graduating with honors, Shawn was drafted to the NFL and his dream became his reality.
Shawn played for several NFL teams for seven years, including the Indianapolis Colts, and is currently CEO of American Services and Protection in Columbus, Ohio. He is an internationally acclaimed motivational speaker who shares the wisdom he gained from his life experiences. Shawn uses his “no excuses” philosophy to motivate millions of students, executives, and CEOs. Rising to fame in the NFL and serving as a life coach, successful business owner and worldwide motivational speaker, Shawn is living proof that “a set-back is a set-up for a comeback.“