In Bill’s words, Michael’s story is unlike you’ve ever heard.
Michael Franzese grew up as the son of the notorious Underboss of New York’s violent and feared Colombo crime family. At his most affluent, he generated an estimated $5 to $8 million per week from legal and illegal businesses. It was a life filled with power, luxury…and deadly violence.
Just a few years ago, mafia boss, Michael Franzese was named one of the biggest money earners the mob had seen since Al Capone, by Vanity Fair. At the age of 35, Fortune Magazine listed him as number 18 on its list of the “Fifty Most Wealthy and Powerful Mafia Bosses”, just 5 behind John Gotti. Avoiding traditional mob domains, Michael masterminded brilliant scams on the edge of the legitimate business world. From auto dealerships and union kickbacks, to financial services and the sports and entertainment industries, to a multi-billion dollar gasoline tax scheme, he earned millions in cash every week at his peak.
Michael met a beautiful dancer from Anaheim, California, named Camille Garcia, whose innocent beauty turned his world upside down. After falling in love and eventually marrying Cammy, she convinced Michael to take the rap on racketeering charges. Michael pled guilty, accepted a 10 year prison sentence and vowed to do the unthinkable – walk away from the mob. Michael Franzese is the only high ranking official of a major crime family to ever walk away, without protective custodies, and survive.
He is now a man on a mission. Determined to use the compelling experiences of his former life for the benefit of corporate executives, professional and student athletes, at-risk youth, church audiences, and for anyone seeking the inspiration to beat the odds and make positive changes in their lives, he has become a highly regarded motivator and a source of invaluable information. Franzese candidly describes how he survived dozens of grand jury appearances, 5 major racketeering indictments, 5 criminal trials, 7 years in prison and a Mafia death sentence.
Tonight’s Step: 3 – Made a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of God as we understood God