Todd Belcore

Todd Belcore

Lawyer / Professor

Northwestern University School of Law

Chicago, IL USA

No one thought that the kid waiting tables was going to become a law school professor doing work at the White House. But you just have to keep pushing harder and higher.


By Roadtrip Nation

Todd Belcore


My road in life took a while to figure out.
Grew up with a single mother who struggled financially, and a brother who was a paraplegic.
Even in their situation, his mom was always giving back to the community; he always knew that he wanted to find a profession where he could help people, too.
Says "despite having a low-income background, his mom fought for him to get a high-income education."
He went to the University of Michigan at Ann Arbor for his undergraduate studies; at the time, he wanted to be a doctor.
Got involved with the NAACP-- realized that while he could help some people as a doctor, he could potentially change the world if he went into law and policy.
While in law school, he realized that he wanted to go into public interest work, specifically, which is pro bono work for people who can't afford legal help.
He had to work multiple jobs to pay for school; says classmates made fun of him for working all the time and wearing hand-me-down clothes.
But he says that living in poverty, couch-surfing, and waiting tables helped put his life in perspective, and prepared him to take on any challenge.
Keep following my journey


High School
Sociology, General
University of Michigan-Ann Arbor
Northwestern University


Lawyer / Professor

I'm an attorney focused on ensuring that former offenders are not unjustly denied employment or occupational licenses.

Career Roadmap

My work combines:
My work combines:
Non-Profit Organizations
Helping People

Day to Day

As a professor, I prepare lessons on and teach classes in law centered around 1) negotiations, and 2) eradicating the New Jim Crow via litigation and policy advocacy. As a lawyer, I focus on litigating, organizing, educating, and crafting legislation to ensure that individuals with criminal records are not unjustly denied employment or occupational licenses.

Advice for Getting Started

Here's the first step for everyone

Every day, ask yourself, "What do I need to do today?" Work on what you can and tackle the rest the next day. Always hold yourself accountable.

Recommended Education

My career is related to what I studied. I'd recommend the path I took:



The Noise I Shed

From Society in General:

"Don't do this or that..."

Challenges I Overcame

Family Stress

Interviewed By

Ready to Rise

Ready to Rise

Confronting systemic barriers to success