I nomad around the world and make things happen.
AJ Leon is an author, designer, international entrepreneur, philanthropist, speaker, conference producer, filmmaker, investor, world traveller and the founder of Misfit.ajleon.co
Bleeding to the edges since 2008.
AJ is the Founder and Global Creative Director of Misfit, a gloriously eclectic collection of businesses and social enterprises spread across the planet. Learn more here.ajleon.co
Don’t follow well-lit paths, grab a machete and hack down your own.
AJ is the author of The Life and Times of a Remarkable Misfit, a collection of essays about living with intention, doing work that actually matters and changing the world. Get the book on Amazon.ajleon.co
No pageants, parades or names on walls. Just random, arbitrary and decisive acts of generosity peppered throughout the planet.
Since 2008, AJ has financed dozens of social, cultural and humanitarian projects and initiatives spread across the globe. In addition to commissioning many public art projects in the States, he has invested in medical programmes in Kenya, schoolhouses in Sudan, computer labs in Tanzania, water wells in Malawi, theatre outreach projects in Cuba, community health programmes in India, sustainable coffee farm initiatives in Laos, academic fellowships in England and the first Shakespeare festival in a National Park, among dozens of other projects. Additionally, every year he personally underwrites thousands of hours of design, digital, video, campaign and strategic work on behalf inadequately funded brilliant charities that cross his path as he travels the globe.
Since 2008, AJ has financed dozens of social, cultural and humanitarian projects and initiatives spread across the globe, including medical programmes in Kenya, schoolhouses in Sudan, computer labs in Tanzania, water wells in Malawi, theatre outreach projects in Cuba, community health programmes in India, sustainable coffee farm initiatives in Laos, academic fellowships in England and the first ever Shakespeare festival in a National Park.ajleon.co
Underwriting and advising unconventional entrepreneurs hell bent on changing the world.
Since 2019, AJ has invested in a diverse cadre of unorthodox changemakers spread across the planet. From founders building decentralised credit scoring defi protocols, digital detox cabins, computer vision-enabled personalised cancer treatments or bourbon brands trying to shake up Kentucky, AJ has invested in, advised and mentored entrepreneurs of every stripe from San Francisco and New York to Malta and Manila. Check out the entire visual portfolio over at Misfit Ventures.ajleon.co
Making the world a more delightfully bizarre place since 1982.
From reimagined filing cabinets and mixed media art installations in Mindanao to copper bookmarks and designing the world’s most outlandish boardroom in Fargo, AJ is always concocting a new experimental visual project. And since 2018, in his own private lab, he works with a small in-house team to develop and pursue a wide range of artistic endeavors including original art concepts and limited edition products. He’s currently working on a concept for a Cuban + Japanese speakeasy, in Lisbon.ajleon.co
Producing award winning films for outcasts, troublemakers and general riff raff around the world.
In addition to establishing a boutique independent film studio with projects in Los Angeles, New York, London and Cape Town, AJ has proudly served as Executive Producer for the award winning films Confection, New Year, Fever and Starship Impossible. He also directed the award winning animated film Death is Smoking my Cigars, a seductively illustrated depiction of the best poem you’ve never read.ajleon.co
This is not your practice Life. This is all there is.
To learn more about AJ’s ethos and personal reinvention, his interview in the Netflix documentary Minimalism is the best five minute version, his TED talk is the best 10 minute version and his interview on Dr. Chris Ryan’s Tangentially Speaking is easily the most comprehensive, stretching back to his father, a reformed cocaine dealer turned entrepreneur and his grandfather, who knew Fidel Castro at university and fled Cuba with nothing during the communist takeover in the early 1960’s.ajleon.co
Work ferociously. Travel immoderately. Dance every chance you get.
And hug like you fucking mean it.
In addition to his entrepreneurial, creative and philanthropic pursuits, AJ is also a star-crossed explorer who travels 250,000 miles per year and has visited and made friends in more than 70 countries. Among many wild and varied adventures, he has taken train journeys across North America, road trips through the deserts of Namibia, he’s rafted the Urubamba river in Peru, safaried in a mokoro across the Okavango Delta, jumped out of a plane over the deserts of Las Vegas, run marathons in Venice & Paris, danced the night away in Kampala night clubs, toured the caverns of the most revered champagne houses in Reims, DJ’d an impromptu NYE party in Shibuya, got an iPhone stolen in Cape Town, walked the Bosphorus before a coup in Istanbul, hiked a waterfall in Iceland in sneakers (bad idea), smoked his weight in Cohibas in Havana and lived in a municipal bus for almost two years that he designed himself and converted to run on vegetable oil, among many other wild adventures. He believes that above anything, traveling this world with an open heart renders cultures permeable and borders meaningless. To follow AJ on his adventures, you can catch him on the Instagram.ajleon.co