I was raised in Harlem and East Harlem in the Grant Housing projects, the Wilson Housing projects, East 100th street, and finally, in a home that housed "Exodus House," a ground-breaking residential community for drug addiction treatment. The program was founded and run by my father. Through Exodus House and my parents, I learned early lessons about courage and the possibilities of the human spirit. After college at Princeton and law school at Columbia University, I practiced law as a prosecutor and then as a public defender.
I left the law practice and started independent schools in Harlem for children who were not successful in public school. Running these schools allowed me to directly impact the school-to-prison pipeline and provide a nurturing environment for creative students who were non-traditional learners.
I went on to lead other youth nonprofits, both here and in Africa and India. Most recently, I was the executive director for Land to Learn, a garden-based education program that works in 11 schools in NY's Hudson Valley. While there, I also created a gardening and yoga program for teen boys convicted in adult court of violent crimes.
During my 15-minutes of fame, I was honored to be the recipient of the Robin Hood Foundation Hero Award and the Essence Magazine Award.
For the last six years, I've lived in the mid-Hudson Valley. I'm also a Breathwork practitioner, Reiki healer, hypnotist, yoga teacher, NLP master practitioner, and father of children ranging from 15 to 30 years of age.
My main goal is to become an ancestor worth remembering. One way I'm doing that is to work with people to heal themselves.
Hans E. Hageman