National Youth Pride Services is proud to announce it’s Third Annual list of 50 Winners Who Are Helping Others Win on our national magazine RizeUp! We used our national membership of youth and young adults across the U.S. to come up with the list and we are excited to see who they are not only watching, but learning from.
What person do you look up to or has the most influence on you?
I thought about this question. The first person I thought about was Barack. His Presidency in 2008 brought a deep inspiration to me at that time. But, when I thought a little further about influence and admiration, I could only think of my Mom. This woman is built like steel and has the heart of a Mother Theresa. Single parent, raising 3 boys to be respectful, righteous men. My mom has many accomplishments, and she has bestowed those onto her boys. When I’m at a pause in my life, I have an instant reminder to keep going and keep pursuing my dreams.
Looking at your life or career goals, what are you looking to do in the long term?
You know, life is mystical. I have a deep rooted passion for law. The end goal I see is practicing criminal defense law. But, if you ask me, what am I doing now, I would tell you,” I am doing what I was brought here to do, and that’s save lives and inspire”. Working in HIV and Prevention has been the single most rewarding thing yet that I have done in my career.
Why do you think its personally important to help others?
There are so many people you come across in this world who may not speak as clearly as you, may not articulate their ideas as you, and who may not even be as fortunate as you. Not saying, that I am any more of these things than anyone else, but, I often think about people who end up in bad situations. I think about the misfortunes they had before any bad situations occurred, and if anyone or anything could have been done to prevent them. It does not sit well with me when I see people who are disadvantaged struggle, I often say, “I’m for the little guy”. I think everyone should be.
What five words best describe you?
Humble, Charismatic, Intelligent, Centered, Compassionate
What are your hobbies, what do you do for fun?
Simple! I live! Days nor hours are promised to you or I. I find fun in every day, every chance to meet someone, every day at work, every moment with family. So, just live. Nothing off the table except, jumping out a plane .(lol)
What are your thoughts on current events such as the Black Lives Matter movement or the presidential elections?
Well, both are very important events occurring right now as we speak. I think Rev. AL Sharpton said it best, the first Black President is leaving office, we need to make sure his legacy continues by electing a candidate who will build on his agenda. Without getting political, presidential elections are important but so are local elections. Hence, the black lives matter movement. Laws, policies, and incorrect governance is the fuel of the black lives matter movement. You have local municipalities across this country refusing to prosecute white men for crimes against black men. This is what it boils down to. It shouldn’t matter if it’s a boy in blue. He’s still a white man, aiming a gun, shooting to kill a black man. With every shooting, they are reminded that they are less than. People are fed up! And you know what? They have every reason to be. But, these same people MUST vote. I see the protest. My thoughts are, protest on election day – at the ballot box in your local district. Vote the policy makers out!
What advice would you give to the 16 year old who is just discovering that he is attracted to the same sex.
*PrEP, PrEP, PrEP, PrEP, PrEP!!!!!!! After we discuss PrEP, I would seriously want to hear from him. Instead of flat out giving advice, I would want to listen to him. Too often people think they have the remedy for everything. This 16 year old may know more about being 16 than I did when I was 16. I would welcome his embrace. Then, after that, PrEP, PrEP, PrEP!!!