BE Modern Man is an integrative program that honors the essence, image, and accomplishments of today’s man of color. With features of today’s leaders, executives, creatives, students, politicians, entrepreneurs, professionals, and agents of change—these men share the common thread of creating a new normal while setting the bar in tech, art, philanthropy, business, and beyond. The BE Modern Man is making a positive impact, his way, and has a story to tell.
BE MODERN MARCUS SANDIFER
Name: Marcus Sandifer
Profession: Corporate Defense Attorney
One Word that Describes you: Dreamer
What does being one of the BEMM 100 Men of Distinction mean to you?
Being one of the BEMM 100 Men of Distinction is an honor and a privilege. To be honored alongside some of the most successful, ambitious, and respected black men in the world is humbling and inspiring. This is the epitome of Black Boy Joy and I am very proud of this achievement.
What are some examples of how you have turned struggle into success?
When I decided to leave my career in corporate America and start all over as a law student, I really didn’t know what I was getting myself into. I went from homeowner to homeless living with a fraternity brother until I could figure how I would be able to pursue my dream of being a lawyer. I was broke and broken, but I was determined to succeed at law school; turning a dream into reality. Not only did I graduate from one of the best law schools in the nation, I was recognized as the most Outstanding Graduate and the Commencement Speaker.
What is an important quality you look for in your relationships with others?
What are some of the immediate projects you are working on?
I’m currently working on producing my podcast that features some of the foremost black and minority entrepreneurs in the area of technology and venture capitalism. I also have a documentary I’m preparing to film about women survivors of domestic abuse and investing in an app that brings legal services to people on demand. It’s like Uber for people in need of legal representation.
What is the best advice you have ever received?
The best advice I’ve ever received is that a person’s opinion of you isn’t real. What matters most is what you think of yourself and what you can achieve. Believe in yourself and wear your own jersey.
What advice do you have for other men who want to make a difference?
Making a difference doesn’t have to be some grand gesture that would take years to accomplish. Use the talents, gifts, and resources you currently possess and make an immediate impact in your own community.
How do you prep for an important business meeting and/or event?
Prepping for an important business meeting is just like prepping for the first date with your significant other. You have to be meticulous and thoughtful about the entire experience. You have to pick the right setting, ensure the proper parties are in attendance, select the best time of day, but most importantly do your research on the subject matter and the person you are meeting with. You should be extremely familiar with everything concerning your guest so that they know you invested time into preparing for the meeting.
What is your “Extraordinary Impact?”
Corporate lawyers are extremely busy so we don’t have a lot of downtime. However, I always make time to work in my community. For example, I work with high school black boys in the New York City Public Schools through the NYC Mayor’s Office on mentoring. I want to show these young kings that the world is theirs and never to limit themselves. Through hard work and dedication, I instill in them that they are intelligent, brilliant, and that the world is ready for them to take their rightful place.