Legacy After The Locker Room Podcast: S2:EP19–Norris Thomas, Former NFL Athlete

Join us for S2:EP19 of the Legacy After the Locker Room Podcast as Norris Thomas, a former NFL athlete sits down with our host Kayla Bradham to discuss the importance of fatherhood.

Imagine being thirteen years old living in a homeless shelter with your family with dreams of a better life. Even bigger than that is the realization that your childhood dream of playing professional football seems to be dashed because nothing about your surroundings speaks to even wanting to dream anymore. However, Norris made a decision the first night in that Milwaukee shelter that would eventually be the guiding force for his life. He also realized that if he could make it through this situation, his story could change lives and encourage others not to just survive, but to succeed with the mastery of their own mission.

Through hard work and perseverance, Norris became a two-sport All-American and National Champion in both football and track respectively at the University of Wisconsin- La Crosse. At the conclusion of his collegiate career, Norris achieved his dream and signed a contract with the New York Football Giants and also played two seasons in the Canadian Football League. In 2012 Norris was inducted into the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse Wall of Fame.

In 1996 following his retirement from football, Norris was asked to speak at a school in Minnesota where a woman approached him and said she really enjoyed his talk. She then proceeded to ask him what his speaking fee was, keep in mind he was holding a coffee mug filled with candy as his compensation for speaking for that day. Today, he is still following through on a decision that he made at the age of thirteen, traveling nationwide as a motivational speaker. At the core of his seminars is sharing his dream, however, over the years, the message has expanded to developing the whole person while helping organizations achieve results. Norris shares the successful formula that he applied in his athletic career and into his professional career as an educator, coach, and sales professional.

Norris believes that the speaking platform is an extension of the classroom, boardroom, and field of competition. His passionate and dynamic delivery appeals to all walks of life as he inspires everyone in the room that wants to be successful to do as he did as a thirteen-year-old in a homeless shelter.

Norris Thomas joins our host Kayla Bradham on S2:EP19 of the Legacy After The Locker Room Podcast


  • 00:00 Introduction
  • 01:05 Playing Sports as a Kid
  • 05:20 Choosing Lacrosse and What It Did For Norris
  • 07:50 Why Football?
  • 14:00 Fatherhood
  • 19:00 Did It Change?
  • 33:25 Connect With Norris | Buy His Book
  • 35:20 Autograph Donation
  • 36:20 Thank Yous and Parting Words


Kelsey Donnolo

Kelsey Donnolo

Sports Philanthropy Network

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