...there's a Ray.
1. Ray LeCara’s entrepreneurial pursuits started as early as high school. During lunch waves he swept the halls for money to buy comic books. He would then flip them.
2. The book that has had the greatest influence in LeCara’s adult life: Flow: The Psychology of Optimal Experience. In it, author Mihaly Csíkszentmihályi, a Hungarian psychologist, explains that “people are happiest when they are in a state of flow—a state of concentration or complete absorption with the activity at hand and the situation.” Furthermore, “both skill level and challenge level must be matched and high; if skill and challenge are low and matched, then apathy results.”
3. LeCara is an avid fan of Science Fiction, inspired at an early age by Classic Trek, the 1968 Stanley Kubrick film, 2001: A Space Odyssey, and the further writings of Arthur C. Clarke’s 2001 series. Cementing this passion and awe for the genre: Cosmos: A Personal Voyage, a thirteen-part PBS series written and hosted by Carl Sagan. Joseph Campbell’s Power of Myth, another PBS series (from 1988 with Bill Moyers), also had a profound impact on young LeCara.
4. The Forgotten Prophecy, LeCara’s first novel, was an AllBookReviews.com Featured Mystery Book of February 2007. The first of his YA science fiction titles, The Torn Timeline: Future Destiny, was picked up by the Bristol School District in Bristol, Connecticut. It was also Spinetinglers' 2008 Book of the Year Second Place Winner.
5. The author of several short stories, LeCara’s “The Scent of Juniper” was a RenPen Short Story Contest 2nd Place Winner (March 2008) and “The Awakening” was a Spinetinglers' Short Story Contest 3rd Place Winner (August 2008).
6. With his wife of 15 years, LeCara has rescued four Italian Greyhound seniors. Their ultimate goal is to create a nonprofit to financially assist other families looking to adopt IG seniors.
7. Though a college professor suggested that LeCara was not a strong candidate for the teaching program, he was later recognized as an Outstanding Student Teacher at graduation, was a successful corporate trainer repeatedly recognized for his training skills, and nominated for the 2001 Disney’s Teacher of the Year. As a mentor, certified teacher, certified trainer, and public speaker, LeCara has given over 25,000 presentations to over 20,000 people.
8. LeCara’s experience working at the corporate level reinforced the importance of effective communication skills, both verbal and written. It also informed his teaching. The goal: ensuring students had an advantage over their peers by exceeding curriculum goals in speaking and writing skills, better equipping and empowering them so they could immediately apply the skills and strategies in the real world at a young age.
9. LeCara, among his other roles, currently helps business leaders find clarity through discovering their purpose. Though King & Justus has perfected this transformational process, LeCara worked with high school juniors and seniors to do the same. Through a long-term essay assignment carefully crafted over a series of months (that included journaling, student/teacher conferences, and multiple drafts), students peeled away the layers of their character, looked inward, became vulnerable, and honestly addressed the question: “Who are you, really?” Addressing such a question, especially for young people ambivalent about their future, helped them find purpose. Students were also able to use these deep, introspective essays with their college and scholarship applications. This powerful activity would go on to become one of the inspirations for Authentic Embassy.
10. Time and again, LeCara’s experiences have proven that how one shows up in the world can and will determine his/her path. In this era of social media and isolated socialization, the art of face-to-face conversation is more important than ever before. Conversation IS the relationship. One cannot expect to be successful in life, love, or business if they cannot engage in a meaningful dialogue. As he has done for over 25 years, LeCara endeavors to be a person of value to friends old and new.