Saturday, March 15, 2014

Lance Constantine: The Building of a Legacy


At just 25 years old, first and foremost Lance Constantine is a motivational speaker, which he has been doing for over five years. It has been his passion to have a "voice for the voiceless" as well as training others to do what he does through Speakers University (Speakers Academy), which he founded back in March 2012. Although the business was established in 2012, the idea of ‘Speakers University’ started in late 2011.

His message to his students and audience members is “I AM REVOLUTION.”  This is also the title of his book, which he describes as an “empowerment tool written in a poetic format.” Through these poems in the book “one can discover identity, true purpose, and also the restoration of what it looks like to operate as a righteous nation.”

From speaking with Constantine it is evident that he is really striving to do something great, which he equates it to being a part of his DNA.

While growing up he had a lot of contributors along the way, which he gives credit as helping him to be the man that he is today. A significant part of Constantine’s life has been Marco Constantine, his father. His dad diligently spoke to him about the family lineage, the power of his last name and its legacy left by his forefathers. The name “Constantine means to be firm in purpose” and his family is very purpose-driven, including his grandfather who was the very first councillor in his region (during the 1940s, 1950s). He had helped people in the community of St. Elizabeth area down in Jamaica.

Overall leadership is very important in his family. In fact, his uncle bought a book for Lance in New York (the last edition) and it accounts for the history of the Constantine family going back to the 10th century. Lance is trying to carry on the legacy of his forefathers.

Lance also accredits his mentor Johnnie Williams III (brother to former Toronto Raptors Jerome “Junkyard Dog” Williams) who was like a big brother to Lance (although Lance also has an older brother). It was very encouraging that “someone of that calibre” saw something in Lance when he was on a guest panel a few years back.

He also looks up to the way his Pastor Orim Meikle carries himself. Constantine finds that he mainly works with a lot of young males, which parallels to the fact that he had a lot of male figures in his life. Constantine having mentors growing up “springboards” back to him giving to the community through his powerful speaking.

Not everyone who writes can speak well and vice versa, but Lance has managed to conquer both. “I love to write, especially poetry,” he says, but he also enjoys writing stories and fables. In college he averaged a 92% in his English classes.

Lance Constantine

Lance Constantine preparing for his Speakers University seminar

Lance in action

Constantine speaking to a group of the young leaders of tomorrow

One of his poems, “I Am Revolution” entitled after the book, was written in 30 seconds in 2009 when he suddenly awoke in the middle of the night. Within two months he wrote a total of 70 pieces. He notes that he works off of inspiration.
“If I am inspired I can get a lot done.” His first book, “I Am Revolution” is also an audio book. The book comes with the audio, which includes sound affects that he jokingly calls the “Cineplex sound.”

After writing his poems in 2009, he was able to release the book in August 2012 through self-publication. It took time because he wanted to get it right, with the right team of editors and illustrators behind him. He also found a printer company that was recommended to him by others he has worked with. He released his book the same time he did a conference in Ottawa.

Writing and printing a book are great achievements in and of itself, but there are other parts of publishing a book that are quintessential to its success. One of which is distribution. “Distribution is key,” he says, which currently his books are mainly being distributed through his audiences, but he is working on other channels to get the book out there.

Constantine highly recommends getting exposure through media outlets, especially daytime TV shows on Rogers, Omni, CityTV etc. “Or if you already have a good following, [have] a media outlet come [out] to cover you [and help] to get the book out there.”

He also encourages authors to accompany their book(s) around a community initiative and to put a purpose behind their book. “Change the paradigm of the concept of releasing books,” he advises.

For a lasting legacy as a writer he wants his “words to […] ignite a sense of purpose through them […] so that they can carry on the speed of change in their generation.” He wants his audience, students and readers to become the change agent and to become a trailblazer and that they will be inspired in the mind to think differently.

As a speaker and just an overall human being he desires to “reconnect and build a generation through God [and] to inspire people into purpose. [To] inspire a historical move [so] that they can become history changers in their time [and] so that they can aspire to be different. It’s almost like becoming green circles in a orange world […] they stand out [because] there is something unique in them.”

Currently his book, “I Am Revolution” is available at Accents Bookstore (locally in Toronto).

You can find Lance on:
Twitter: @_LConstantine
Facebook: Lance Constantine

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