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Robert Louis Shepard
The Shepard Institute (TSI), LLC |
Robert Louis Shepard, PhD is a motivational writer and speaker who mentors people to help them identify their enthusiasm, then use their capabilities minus all potential limitations to add value to their personal lives, to the organizations they serve, and ultimately to the global community. He is described as a lightning rod of inspiration and a true pioneer based on how he forged new paths in his chosen profession and opened doors for others. His motto is, ”It’s more productive to focus on your capabilities than on your limitations.”
In 2013 Dr. Shepard published his first book, his autobiography “Fulfilling My Destiny, Step By Step.” Breaking down barrier after barrier and stereotype after stereotype, Dr. Shepard has been referred to as a cultural icon that has lived a memorable life and now cheerfully relates his well-learned lessons and experiences in his book and through his speeches. He not only demonstrates an impressive industriousness and work ethic from an early age but also displays unyielding moral fiber, ensuring to the best of his ability that God and family guides his decision making process.
Some readers have commented that his book is a definite must-read for America’s children, for those caught in a web of absolute despair, and for individuals who seek to make a difference in their communities. Others agree that the book contains humor, sorrow, stress, and joy any reader will appreciate. Dr. Shepard believes every person dreaming of a productive life must learn that hard work, strong values, love of family and friends, and courage and faith in God are the ingredients for them achieving their dream. He holds firmly to the position that when all of these qualities are working together in a person's life, they are worth more than silver and fine gold. In 2016, his voice was added to the TED Talk global community of speakers who share "Ideas Worth Spreading."
Dr. Shepard earned degrees in chemistry starting with a B.S. degree from Saint Augustine’s College (now University) in 1969, and M.S. and Ph.D. degrees from Howard University in 1971 and 1973 respectively. His specialty at the graduate level was Physical Organic Chemistry with a focus on Mass Spectroscopy. In addition to within the U.S., he has traveled internationally to engage in research collaborations and present his research work in Scotland, England, France, Germany, Austria, Italy, China, and Africa. He serves on several advisory boards, a member of various societies and organizations, a past Sigma Xi Distinguished Lecturer and has received numerous awards and honors including the 21st Century Trailblazer Award from the City Council of Jackson Mississippi.
While heading the Science and Engineering Alliance, Inc. (known as SEA), his work to create access and open doors of opportunity for faculty and students at HBCUs lead him to become a chief negotiator for inclusion of HBCUs in the federal government’s multi-billion dollars-a-year research enterprise. After serving SEA for nearly a quarter of a century and the organization exceeding its mission, he closed SEA in 2013 and formed The Shepard Institute (TSI), LLC that same year.
After a 47-year separation from his alto sax, in 2011 Dr. Shepard picked back up his sax and is having fun becoming reacquainted with how to make music. He is a member of Alpha Phi Alpha fraternity. A native of Garner, North Carolina, he now enjoys life moving between Maryland and North Carolina. He and his wife Alzonia are the proud parents of three adult children, Shawn (+),Robin (+, +, +), and Pamela, and three grandchildren, Ryan, Stefani, and Nina Grace.