connection is one thing, but a business partnership must be mutually beneficial. Wade, who grew up in Chicago, liked the fact that FCB's team was based in his hometown, and that they were eager to work with his Wade's World Foundation, a nonprofit organization that promotes education for school children and youth.
In 2012, Wade asked FCB to design a t-shirt based on a slogan he coined: "Team No Sleep." After the Heat won the league title that year, Wade and his entourage wore FCB's Team No Sleep shirts at the NBA Championship celebration at LIV Nightclub in Miami Beach. "We had no idea he was going to wear it the day they won a championship," says Johnnie. "It went worldwide overnight."
"We're so excited for Johnnie. He's so passionate, bright, and focused," says Adithi Chandrashekar, Development Associate at NFTE's Chicago office. "He's a great example of how entrepreneurship can take a young person who doesn't know what kind of thumbprint they're going to leave on the world, and help them focus on how to make their dream a reality."
Maintaining a strong connection with his roots is important to Johnnie, who's happy to give back to his community.
"I still live in
in Chicago, which is one of the roughest neighborhoods in the country," he says. "We know the huge issue that Chicago has faced as a city with violence and things like that. We're still very much entrenched in those things, so it's an easier connection to the kids who are living through it every day. We say, 'Hey, we're doing work with Dwayne Wade and all these amazing people, but you guys can easily be doing this as well'."