IMPACT
06/12/2010 05:12 am ET | Updated May 25, 2011

J.D. Glass, Once Homeless Himself, Now An Advocate For The Homeless

Last year, J.D. Glass was living in the woods in Virginia, wrestling with alcoholism so severe that he was on the brink of death. When Glass reached out to a homeless shelter for help, doctors estimated that he was only days away from dying. His health forced him into the hospital, where, determined to turn his life around, Glass sobered up and reached out to long-lost family members.

The Washington Post reports that Glass has now recovered his health and is living in his own apartment. Grateful for his new chance at life, Glass is using his voice to speak for other homeless men and women in his community. When a proposed budget cut came before the county Board of Supervisors, one that would cut funding to nonprofits and local homeless shelters, Glass felt he needed to speak out. He prepared a four minute speech and attended a county meeting, so he could put into words an experience that many will never experience.

"Just the fact that he was speaking in front of the board and was coherent and sober and had put his life together, it's a moving story," [Chairman Corey] Stewart said afterward.