Life of a Brave: Alder Meets The Braves
by: William Reynolds and Ed Crowe
During Fall orientation for the 2022-2023 school year, the St. John Bosco High School senior class had a once in a lifetime opportunity to speak with members of Alder, an organization featuring a diverse collection of motivational speakers from various professional fields.
Principal Dr. Kris Anderson got the idea to collaborate with Alder when he met with Bosco parent, Mr. Kyle Cox. As a member of Alder, Mr. Cox possesses connections with dozens of successful entrepreneurs, doctors, lawyers and professional athletes who were willing to come and share their stories with the senior class.
Their stories were shared in the course of a panel discussion. The main focus of the discussion was the three principles of self, family and community. Alder believes that in order to help your family, you must first fix yourself, and in order to help your community, you must first fix your family. You cannot go to the next step without completing the previous step. If the steps are not followed in order, the goal will be harder to obtain.
“I felt proud to see our senior class, the leaders of our school, were engaged, asking great questions and giving thorough responses. I am just proud of the seniors that rose to the occasion,” said Dr. Anderson.
With every guest speaker came a story of perseverance. Their main focus was on how hard work and dedication can take someone a long way and how the choices they made impacted where they are today.
Mr. Cox, one of the most impactful speakers that led the event, unveiled his treacherous journey. When he was younger, he struggled to mature. To help him shape up, he enlisted in the Navy to attain leadership, discipline and hard work. After six years as a satellite technician, he was honorably discharged and began to set foot on a career of marketing strategy as well as marketing development. He then created his business TCG, a men footwear and lifestyle brand who are making a Bosco exclusive shoe for the school.
However, Cox was not the only one of Alder presenters who displayed perseverance.
Nancy Gale was one of the more inspirational speakers from the symposium. She told her story about how she made a living from being an entrepreneur in the world of fashion design. But she also went through a despairing time in her life following the murder of her mother in a home invasion. In the end, she used this tragedy and made something good out of it. She decided to start an organization called Ambition in memorial of her mother, which is a nonprofit organization that helps young entrepreneurs achieve their goals.
Another prominent speaker was Ryan Hollins, who offered his experience of persistence as a child growing up in the projects. Hollins became an NBA journeyman who played for nine teams in his career. But at the beginning of his childhood, he grew up in the worst of the worst environments and brought himself up on his own, falling in love with basketball from a very early age. After ten seasons of professional ball, he decided to retire and pursue a career in broadcasting so that he can still stay close to the sport he knows and loves.
After the panel spoke, the seniors went into small groups and conversed more personally at a table with two representatives from Alder. Everyone spoke about their life experiences and answered some ice breaker questions. The leaders talked to the seniors about the vast number of opportunities they have available to them as young men.
“I thought that the whole experience was one I will never forget because I learned so much about all of the potential opportunities that await me within the next couple of years from my two Alder mentors,” said senior Paxton Allison.
Dr. Anderson has confirmed that Alder will be making another guest appearance to next year’s senior class. They plan on having smaller discussions that are more specifically tailored to our six academic pathways.