Stephen Richards spent nine years in prison for selling marijuana before becoming a professor of criminal justice.
During his nine-year stint in prison, Richards had a tough wake-up call after witnessing suicides, beatings and shootings.
According to Warren St. John at the New York Times, Richards received his bachelor's degree while incarcerated and got his graduate degree from University of Wisconsin and Ph.D. from Iowa State University.
He went on to become a professor of criminal justice at University of Wisconsin–Oshkosh and published several books on criminology.
"There's been some very successful businessmen who had a previous life as a criminal behind bars, and you know, our hats are off to those individuals who managed to, you know, engage in the American dream through that process," Richards told NPR News.