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firstname.lastname@example.orgWRONG LANES HAVE RIGHT TURNS
by Michael PhillipsA WaterBrook Hardcover / On sale January 25, 2022
“Michael Phillips is like a son to me. He has become a voice of hope for this generation. Having overcome profound challenges, he now speaks for the forgotten children of our society with honesty and power.
His story will touch your heart, make you think, and inspire you to act until we can say together that ‘all the children are well.’”—Bishop T. D. Jakes, chairman of the board for T.D. Jakes Foundation, bestselling author and award-winning filmmaker, and senior pastor of the Potter’s House
Michael Phillips was almost just another statistic. After getting arrested at age 18, the once-promising student was facing the possibility of 30 years in prison. But because of a miraculous turn of events, that wasn’t the end of his story.
With striking vulnerability, Phillips—now a pastor, thought leader, modern education expert, and the chief engagement and fulfillment officer for the T.D. Jakes Foundation—details how flaws in our education system at a pivotal time in his life turned his promising potential toward high-stakes crime and how one simple choice brought him a second chance in his book, WRONG LANES HAVE RIGHT TURNS: A Pardoned Man’s Escape from the School-to-Prison Pipeline and What We Can Do to Dismantle It
(on sale 1/25/22, WaterBrook).
Phillips’ second chance came as he stood before a judge and was given a choice: serve a decades-long prison sentence if found guilty or attend a college program for adjudicated youth. He chose education, and with that one decision, not only did the trajectory of his life change, but his life mission was born—to help change the system that results in so many young Black men like himself going straight from school to prison.
Through his unforgettable story—and his extensive experience as a pastor and education advocate for “at-promise” youth—Phillips highlights our modern crisis of education and incarceration. For example, 38% of the prison population is Black, yet Black people represent only 13% of the total American population. He also notes that from 1989 to 2013, the U.S. spent six times more on jails than on higher education and, in some states, builds more prisons than schools.
Phillips writes, “If our budgets reflect our belief systems, then it is evident that we have lost hope in human potential and have divested from individual purpose.” He goes on to offer practical principles for reform, including the one thing anyone can start doing now: empowering kids to embrace their God-given purpose and worth.Wrong Lanes Have Right Turns
is more than just an inspiring story: it illuminates the power that advocacy, resources, and opportunities have in transforming children’s lives and their eventual adulthood, and in ultimately being who God created them to be.
“I have driven down many wrong lanes in my life,” Phillips writes. “I have also made some very important right turns. But now I am making another turn, and I’m hoping that you will join me… Any
of us can change the world of a child or a classroom for the better, right where we are.” In an interview, Phillips can speak about:
- His powerful story of escaping the school-to-prison pipeline
- His testimony of abandoning faith after a series of losses and how a second chance at college drew him back to God and his pastoral calling
- Educators and their crucial role in children’s success or failure
- Mass incarceration statistics and how the education system contributes to it
- Why individual action is essential for structural change, and the steps that individuals can take to reform education and dismantle the school-to-prison pipeline
- The 5-Key Model for reintegrating previously incarcerated individuals into society
- Despite his background, his son graduated from Harvard University; when the judge gave Michael a second chance, he gave his future generations a second chance, too
For more information, visit www.waterbrookmultnomah.com. ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Michael Phillips
is passionate about helping people live a better life. His determination to drive social change with lasting transformational benefits to society has led him to become an innovator and thought leader in social entrepreneurship and education. He is the founder of LifePrep and currently serves as the chief engagement and fulfillment officer for the T.D. Jakes Foundation.
As an author and inspirational speaker, Phillips has become a champion for children and families around the world. He is the chairman of 50CAN and serves as a board member of KuriosEd. His powerful story and message of collateral hope has transformed many lives and helped to revitalize communities. Michael Phillips and his wife, Dr. Anita Phillips, reside in Dallas, Texas. For more information, visit www.MichaelPhillips.info.