First Impressions

Frank Kelly wants to make sure everyone has the potential to be an “ACE” day and night, inside and out, regardless of the cards they’ve been dealt.
Text by Jillian Lobato Photo courtesy of A.C.E. Unleashed, Inc. | July 9, 2018 | People

In most lifetimes, a person experiences at least one major bout of hopelessness that leads them to embark on some serious soul-searching. This is where motivational speaker Frank Kelly comes in to help bring back the desire needed to get back out there. An accomplished director of a Fortune 500 company, Kelly strives to instill positive attitudes in others.
As the founder of A.C.E. Unleashed, Inc. and A.C.E. Unleashed Productions, Kelly used “A.C.E.” to highlight the important points of his presentations: “A” stands for Attitude, “C” for Communication Skills and “E” for External Image, all of which will guarantee success if implemented correctly. In his speeches, he uses high-energy and incorporates music, dancing and humor to build a lasting impression on his listeners and help them to visually understand how attitude is such an influential tool in life. “In today’s culture, one must leave a stronger lasting impression that has an impact on others,” he says. Having motivated students in high schools and colleges, along with large corporations, small companies and homeless shelters, his philosophy works.
With two successful programs under his belt that secured employment for homeless men and women, Kelly most recently launched Project Vacant Streets (PVS) to provide 21 days of coaching to the homeless community in South Florida in order to help them re-engage into the workforce and rebuild their lives. Qualified candidates have a minimal to no criminal record or history of substance abuse and are enthusiastic to re-enter the workforce. He helps them through a series of “transperiences” — a term coined by Kelly to capture the emotional, professional and physical transformational experiences needed to help regain self-esteem and eventually gain employment and housing. “As we become further immersed in a recession with rising unemployment rates and dwindling job opportunities, we’ve begun to see a drastic increase in the percentage of Americans that fall victim to homelessness,” says Kelly. “On a personal level, PVS helps position the homeless back into the workforce. At a national level, the project aims to create awareness among our country’s employers and to alleviate the misconceptions often associated with our homeless community, in hopes of having American employers consider homeless candidates for positions.”
When it comes to physical appearance, Kelly knows the importance of first impressions. So much so that he earned as spot as one of Esquire’s “Best Dressed Real Men in America” in 2007. “Your combined attire and external image is what allows you to leave a positive first impression. For more information, visit