I had the honor of addressing the University of Nevada Reno Business School during their awards ceremony in 2011. I thought long and hard about what type of wisdom I would leave these successful students that would soon be entering the job market. The value of mentors came to mind and how mentors have played key roles in my progression. I have been fortunate enough to have several great mentors and each has been very unique. This blend of mentors in my life helped guide me to who I am today and this is what I spoke to the UNR students about that day. Finding mentors is a valuable part of anyone’s life no matter your background or age. It shows that you are willing to learn and in a world with infinite knowledge.
Not all of my mentors have come from personal contact, I have found great wisdom from mentors in books, history, sports, travel and life experiences. In the last few years since I founded the Growing Worldwide Opportunity Foundation I started to notice opportunities to support mentor programs. However, the current structure at GWOF did not allow for the organization to support these efforts. As a result, we have decided to start a separate Mentor Program for GWOF that can support grassroots mentor programs that take a unique approach to passing along wisdom and knowledge to the next generation. This is our way of thanking our mentors through extending this same act of kindness through our organization.
Our inaugural mentor project, The Parker Fox Junior Golf Program, is special to me in a number of ways. First, the game of golf was a key part of my development as a child and as an adult. I had the privilege of playing golf competitively for years and ultimately playing at the collegiate level. This game taught me many great lessons about life through the ups and downs you experience in a round of golf. Golf also taught me how to be a gentlemen and use etiquette at a very young age. I am forever grateful to the game of golf and will continue to be mentored by this game throughout my life. Second, this program is in memory of my friend Parker Fox who passed away a year and half ago. Parker and I had the opportunity to share some great experiences together on the golf course and like many other friends I built a friendship with Parker on the golf course. Parker shared the same passion for golf that many who have picked up a golf club have experienced and it makes me very happy to see this project come together. GWOF can only take a small portion of responsibility for this project, the real credit goes to the Fox family (Randy, Karen, Dustin and Jessika). They have worked hard to develop the vision and organize the right players to make this a reality. Due to the passion of this family we will get the opportunity to see other chideren benefit from the great game of golf. I have no doubt that Parker will be looking down from heaven with a smile on his face seeing these young minds grow from the experience. I could not be happier about this project and look forward to GWOF participating in many more programs that will help mentor individuals around the world to strive for excellence and advancement.