Elevating Impact Stories: John Shepherd
Leading up to the Elevating Impact Summit on June 21, we’ve invited event speakers and panelists to engage in a storytelling project. We believe that storytelling is an essential part of effective social innovation. How can we tell stories in a way that generates interest and creates connections? How can we listen to the stories of others with the empathy needed to achieve true understanding? We hope that by sharing stories of failure, transformation and success, you’ll learn more about our speakers and the promise and challenges of social innovation.
John Shepherd answers the question, “What lessons has your work taught you?” with a story about the true value of business:
“It’s not about the money that’s made, or the cool gadgets that are created—it’s about, Does it make a difference in someone’s life? Does it make this world a better place to live in?”
John is the Founder and President of M25 Ventures, a Kingdom-focused nonprofit helping former addicts and ex-offenders achieve economic sustainability and personal growth through entrepreneurship. He is also the founder of Western Accounting Services, Inc. which developed one of the first PC-based royalty accounting software programs in the publishing industry. Western Accounting Services later merged with a computer hardware distribution business and formed Avalon Technology Group, Inc. Under John’s leadership Avalon became a leading provider of accounting software, computer hardware, and IT network services in the Portland area.
In 2002 John began volunteering as a computer teacher for the LifeChange recovery program at Union Gospel Mission. He then became the volunteer Education Director for the program and designed a four-year life skills and discipleship curriculum. He later took a full-time position at Union Gospel Mission as the Services Director for the LifeChange program, where he was responsible for staffing and designing a case management system and designing a vocational training program for residents.
John will participate in a panel on “Re-entry Redefined” at the Elevating Impact Summit on June 21.