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Marty Hennessy JT Foundation
PO Box 60953
Boulder City, NV 89006
501(c)3 Non-profit Organization #C24478-2004
 
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Leadership is a constant theme and emphasis at CMC. One way CMC emphasizes leadership is through the Athenaeum Speaker Series (www.cmc.edu/mmca), which enables CMC students to dine with leaders from a wide range of fields every weeknight during the academic year. Recent speakers have included authors, activists, entrepreneurs, scientists, professors, politicians, and more. If you could invite anyone to speak at the Athenaeum, who would you choose and why? Please limit your response to no more than 300 words.

?You are an underdog, never forget that,? said Ryan Wolfington. With these words, I learned the value of a mentor. Over the past seven years. Ryan has inspired children through mentoring, education, and tennis, and I have been fortunate enough to be one of them. Not only has he shown me how to physically and mentally live a healthier lifestyle, but his words, ?You are an underdog,? have pushed me to give 100% effort and to let go of the fear of failing. I hear Ryan’s motivating speeches when I am struggling, when I feel like I’ve reached my limit. Since he believes in me, I start believing in myself, as I venture into the unknown, a place beyond my perceived boundaries. I have learned to NEVER quit. For instance, during the quarter-finals of the State Tennis Championship, my legs gave out in the middle of a point. Knots formed in my calves, knees, and quads, as pain shot through every cramping muscle in my legs. After falling multiple times, I first had to default a point and then 2 games. Did I quit? No. His words reverberated in my head, ?You can do this. You are an underdog. Do not quit. Just fight.? After writhing in pain for 30 minutes, I won the match, exemplifying leadership to my team. From this experience, not only can I take the lesson of never quitting into the rest of my life, but I now have an appreciation of the power a mentor can have.

Ryan has inspired me, with his unwavering commitment to my development, to push my limits. Mentors develop leaders. I would choose Ryan Wolfington to be a speaker at the Athenaeum, so the CMC community can experience the value of a mentor and his positive message of never quitting.


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