top of page





Necessity over popularity is his mantra. While the average person dreams of fame and celebrity status, Deonte Bridges casts his ambitions much higher - choosing to be neither average nor popular.


At an early age, Gates Millennium Scholar and Morehouse College alumnus Deonte Bridges decided to take a route that many of his peers often chose to steer away from and fully dedicated himself to academics. This mentality, along with a strong work ethic, earned Deonte the esteemed title of valedictorian for the historical Booker T. Washington High School’s graduating class of 2010.  In fact, he was the first black male valedictorian from the high school in more than a decade. In addition to securing the top spot in his graduating class, Deonte also managed to earn more than $1 million dollars in scholarship offers.


However, the road to success wasn’t an easy one for the now 32-year-old. His acquaintance with grief and adversity began early on with the untimely passing of his elder brother Maurice. Shortly after, another devastating blow was delivered with his mother’s diagnosis of leukemia. Then adding to the overwhelming stress, at age 15, Deonte was robbed at gunpoint less than one minute away from the front door of his home. Nevertheless, despite the paranoia of a near-death experience; the pain of missing his older brother; and the uncertainty of his mother’s prognosis, Deonte still maintained superior academic success – and this is why so many people have been encouraged and inspired by his journey.


Since delivering his high school commencement address in 2010, the name Deonte Bridges has become a popular one. His graduation speech took the Internet by storm and has been viewed by millions of people all over the world – even to places as far as Africa and Europe. As a result, Deonte has made appearances on national television shows such as CNN Live and Fox & Friends, has been a guest on BBC Radio and V-103’s Frank and Wanda Morning Show, has graced the pages of the Atlanta Journal Constitution and Essence Magazine, and has had celebrities such as P. Diddy; Tyrese; and Kevin Hart acknowledge his efforts by sharing his story with their respective fan bases.


Currently, Deonte is an assistant principal at a local charter school in Atlanta where he works tirelessly to ensure school readiness; improve academic achievement; inspire civic leadership; encourage personal accountability; and promote resiliency among people of all ages. Nowadays, he is highly sought-after public speaker and educator who is on a mission to use his voice and experiences to engage, educate, and empower people all around the world.

bottom of page