Never Far From Home: Bruce Jackson’s Journey from the Projects to Microsoft
Bruce Jackson wants his story not to be unique. Unfortunately for thousands of kids growing up in urban poverty the way out seems impossible to find. But Bruce gives hope and opens up possibilities by sharing his story of growing up in the projects in Brooklyn, NY to becoming the attorney for Hip Hop legends and landing as the Associate General Counsel at Microsoft. He gives the blueprint in his new book Never Far From Home: My Journey from Brooklyn to Hip Hop, Microsoft, and the Law. UrbanFaith contributor Maina Mwaura sits down with Bruce Jackson, Esq. to discuss his journey and the inspiration he has to help make his story more common through his work. More on the book is below.
Microsoft’s associate general counsel shares this story that is “as nuanced as it is hopeful” (Hakeem Jeffries, House Minority Leader) about his rise from childhood poverty in pre-gentrified New York City to a stellar career at the top of the technology and music industries in this stirring true story of grit and perseverance. For fans of Indra Nooyi’s My Life in Full and Viola Davis’s Finding Me.
As an accomplished Microsoft executive, Bruce Jackson handles billions of dollars of commerce as its associate general counsel while he plays a crucial role in the company’s corporate diversity efforts. But few of his colleagues can understand the weight he carries with him to the office each day. He kept his past hidden from sight as he ascended the corporate ladder but shares it in full for the first time here.
Born in Crown Heights, Brooklyn, Jackson moved to Manhattan’s Amsterdam housing projects as a child, where he had already been falsely accused and arrested for robbery by the age of ten. At the age of fifteen, he witnessed the homicide of his close friend. Taken in by the criminal justice system, seduced by a burgeoning drug trade, and burdened by a fractured, impoverished home life, Jackson stood on the edge of failure. But he was saved by an offer. That offer set him on a better path, off the streets and eventually on the way to Georgetown Law, but not without hard knocks along the way.
But even as he racked up professional accomplishments, Jackson is still haunted by the unchanged world outside his office.
From public housing to working for Microsoft’s president, Brad Smith, and its founder, Bill Gates, to advising some of the biggest stars in music, Bruce Jackson’s Never Far from Home reveals the ups and downs of an incredible journey, how he overcame many obstacles and the valuable lessons learned along the way.