Leslie was inspired to set up Inspire You to help young, gifted people with meaningful support, education, training and inspiration, and to honour the memory of his son Jamel.

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Leslie is a great role model that young people identify with.

He says:“my success as an elite sportsman and businessman comes from the same place: I love what I do, it is not a job or a task – it is my vocation. I have clear vision, ability to focus under pressure and I am committed to prepare meticulously for success.”

Entrepreneurial drive and a passion for helping people have motivated Leslie all his life. Now his company Higher Level World is a social enterprise specialising in the provision of supported accommodation, training and tailored development programmes for people aged 16 to 25, with disruptive behaviour patterns despite ample intelligence. The company gives them the support to transition successfully to independent living.

By the age of 18, due to Leslie's talent and focus, he was representing Great Britain in Karate and winning gold medals. National and international titles include English, British, Dutch, European, Commonwealth and Olympic cups. For 15 years, Leslie competed and coached nationally and internationally. He is currently coaching the world Karate champion, Jordan Thoma, in training for the 2020 Olympics.

Before establishing Higher Level World, Leslie worked with housing associations to help troubled and disadvantaged young people and ex-offenders.

When the Higher Level World business model became a national success, Leslie was invited to the Department of Trade and Industry DTI 2002. Leslie advised the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry on how to support business growth of ethnic minority entrepreneurs and stategies for regeneration in deprived areas nationwide. He chaired the Ethnic Minority Business Forum (EMBF) national Leadership and Workforce Development committee for several years. He also helped to organise the conference prior to the 2012 Olympics to consider how businesses nationwide would benefit from the London games.

Leslie's vision for helping young people achieve their goals and feel empowered was also the motivating factor for becoming one of the founders of the National Youth Enterprise Awards.

Read about Jane Noble Knight

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With grateful thanks to our sponsors

With grateful thanks to our sponsors