Official Website of Best Selling Author
What Will You Do When Life Taps You On The Shoulders And Whispers
“Its Your Turn Now”?
Reverend Odell Cleveland is an author who focuses his work on both the reader’s head and the reader’s heart. The three books he has authored or co-authored reflect chapters in his life that reveal lessons relevant to individuals and communities struggling to address social issues.
Each book draws upon his journey from tragedy to triumph through the power of faith and hard work. The foundational source of Odell’s work is his divorced single mother who suffered a massive stroke at the age of 25, yet walked three miles with a wooden cane in her right hand and a long metal brace strapped to her left leg to make sure Odell was not forced into a special-education class.
Rev. Odell is a man of the cloth and a man of accomplishment. A community leader. The chief administrative officer at 7,000-member Mount Zion Baptist Church.
always focusing on
Odell’s most recent book, It’s My Turn Now, uses his experience gained through building Caregiver Connect, Inc., Odell speaks to others in the “sandwich generation” with an inspirational message and practical advice that addresses the family dynamics of caregiving, with the goal of helping families navigate the rough journey of caring for their loved ones.
Odell’s first book, Pracademics and Community Change: A True Story of Nonprofit Development and Social Entrepreneurship During Welfare Reform, co-authored with Dr. Robert Wineburg, is based on Odell’s experience in establishing and growing America’s first faith-based community action agency. What started in a church side annex grew into a $100 million nonprofit organization, changing the lives of thousands. This solution-driven self-sufficiency program, assembled on the platforms of employment training and distribution of donated products, was heralded as a pioneering model by President Obama’s Office of Faith-based and Neighborhood Partnerships.
And Glenda Cleveland was “a strict yet beautiful mother,” he says. “She was a fighter, And she’s still fighting.”
But their roles have changed through the years. Glenda Cleveland is now 77, and time and a massive stroke at age 25 caught up with her.
Odell’s interest in leadership was the impetus for his second book, Born To Be a Coach. While the subject of the book focuses on basketball Coach Jerry Waters, the real lessons given in the book are about leadership. As a talented athlete for the USC-Upstate team, Odell learned that not only talent, but effective leadership is required to obtain results. He uses decades of leadership experience to draw out lessons that transcend the basketball court.
Woven throughout his work is Odell’s passion for creating common ground. His decades of experience in business and nonprofit agency leadership, as well as expertise related to addressing tough societal issues, provides him with a unique prospective to strive for mutual understanding, always focusing on positive outcomes.
Glenda Cleveland at age 24.
Courtesy of Odell