Brandon P. Fleming
Assistant Coach of Debate
Brandon P. Fleming’s story of struggle, success, and service has inspired millions around the world. An at-risk youth and college dropout turned award-winning educator, Fleming is Assistant Debate Coach at Harvard University and Founder/CEO of the Harvard Diversity Project. Fleming was recruited to join the Harvard debate faculty at the age of 26. Harvard later approved Fleming’s proposal to establish a new department within the university system called the Harvard Diversity Project – an unprecedented pipeline program that the Harvard Debate Council adopted as its subsidiary. Fleming now leads an executive staff and board that has raised a million dollars to enroll over 100 students of color into Harvard’s international summer debate residency on full scholarship. Fleming recruits underserved youth with no prior debate experience who he then trains to compete against hundreds of elite debaters from over 25 different countries around the world. For three consecutive years, since the program’s inception in 2017, every cohort trained by Fleming has won the international competition, with one group achieving an unprecedented undefeated record as global champions. News of the achievement instantly went viral and broke national headlines, being featured on CNN, ESPN, Good Morning America, and many more. The organization has gained the financial backing of Fortune 100 companies such as The Coca-Cola Company, UPS, Chick-fil-A, and many more. Fleming has established a groundbreaking organization that is pipelining Black youth into Ivy League and elite colleges & universities. His students have now matriculated to Harvard, Yale, Stanford, and others alike on full scholarship. Fleming’s story, erudition, and achievements have enabled him to use his voice to inspire and impact lives in places ranging from federal prisons to global platforms such as the United Nations General Assembly. In 2020, The Root Magazine named Fleming one of the top 100 most influential African-Americans in the United States and Forbes Magazine named Fleming to the Forbes 30 Under 30 list.
Fleming has received numerous awards for his work in education and social entrepreneurship. The Georgia Center for Nonprofits selected Fleming as a 2016 recipient of the Georgia ’30 Under 30′ award for emerging nonprofit leaders. In 2017, Fleming was inducted into Outstanding Atlanta – an annual award for 10 of Atlanta’s most accomplished leaders. In 2018, Fleming was inducted into LEAD Atlanta – Atlanta’s premier network of emerging leaders. In 2018, Fleming was also honored by Power 30 Under 30 and selected by the Atlanta Regional Commission as one of 50 community leaders to join the Regional Leadership Institute. Also, in 2018, Fleming was among the 50 world leaders selected by the Schusterman Foundation to converge in Israel for a global leadership program. Atlanta Tribune also recognized Brandon as an Atlanta Gamechanger in the 2018 edition of Who’s Who in Black Atlanta. In 2019, Fleming received an honorary resolution from the Georgia House of Representatives, as well as a community leadership recognition from the Atlanta Hawks and Crown Royal. He was also named the 2019 Modern Man of Distinction by Black Enterprise. He received the Education Advocate Award from Urban League of Greater Atlanta, was featured on the cover of Georgia Trend Magazine as a 40 Under 40 inductee and was featured on the cover of Simply Buckhead Magazine as one of Atlanta’s Rising Stars. Notably, Fleming made history as an elected speaker for the inaugural International Day of Education at the United Nations General Assembly and was named to the 2020 Forbes 30 Under 30 list. In 2020, The Root Magazine also recognized Fleming as one of the top 100 influential African-Americans in the United States.