Growing up in a family of eight children, with five younger sisters, I knew that I had to do everything in my power to set a positive example. I became the first in my immediate family to graduate from a four-year university. Nothing made me more proud on graduation day than hearing my sisters say they wanted to be just like me. The Shoelace Foundation will extend the reach far beyond my family. This amazing organization and the goal’s we’ve set forth will allow me to help impact the lives of our future leaders.
I was exposed to the act of giving back early. Because my lineage traces back to Haiti, one of the poorest countries in the world, I know what poverty looks like in the utmost form. My parents instilled goodwill in me at an early age. As a child, my parents would never let me throw old clothes away. Instead, they would have me gather my old t-shirts, jeans, and even sneakers and send them to Haiti, even if they were run-down. This was profound to me, that my old belongings could be used to help someone less fortunate. With those teachings, I vowed to one day give back on a large scale if I was ever in the position to. The Shoelace Foundation has given me the opportunity to see my vision through.
Giving has always been a matter of course for me. Having lived in Downtown Los Angeles, I was exposed to one of the largest stables of homelessness in the country. It truly brings me joy to bring joy to the less fortunate.
Growing up in a large family, we learned the importance of giving. I’ve made it my mission to be a role model for my family and those who look to me for guidance. The mission and goals of this wonderful foundation are in line with my own. Raising my children and coaching little league football has taught me a valuable lesson about giving back to the youth.