It is my great privilege and honor to have been asked to be one of the judges for this fantastic event.
I have lived with BCM for 35 years and have done everything to my best ability and do my best to never let BCM hold me back in whatever I am trying to accomplish. One of these things was art.
Since I can remember, I have loved to draw, paint, sculpt, and create in every other medium I could get my hands on. Growing up with this can be difficult, but anything in life that is truly worth it is difficult. That is what makes these things so worth it.
Hearing someone tell me that something I drew was actually good, was the most uplifting thing I could have hoped for.It fed the fire inside to create, which only grew as I aged.
I was accepted into a class that just 50 students from each grade in each district was accepted into for three years from third to fifth grade, continued with art all the way through high school where I was lucky enough to be voted « Most Artistic » in my Senior class and had my artwork put on our Senior class shirts. On through college painting was my main focus.
I do not get to draw as much anymore as I would like, but have three great kids who all love to draw. My oldest would like to be a graphic artist and work with creating video games one day.
My need to create has not stopped though. I do my best to continue to never be held back. I am now a foreman for a swimming pool company where I am able to put my artistic love into creating areas for families to spend time together and enjoy life.
I also grew up with an extreme love of sports, in particular football. I played the game for 8 years, even minor league (semi-pro without being paid) after school, all while living with BCM.
I don’t play anymore but have blended my love for creating and football into a job, writing about it for one of the largest Fantasy Football websites in the industry. I currently have over 110 published articles. I create my own data visualizations for my articles. A beautifully designed spreadsheet or graph is my artistic expression now. I never could have imagined that I would be getting paid in the football industry.
Many had doubts about my ability to succeed, but again, never let those hold YOU back in whatever YOU choose to strive for. Life is worth living to the fullest. You deserve everything anyone else does.
I will close with my two favorite quotes:
« Disability lies in the eyes of the observer. » Vala Afshar
« Good, better, best. Never let it rest. ‘Til your good is better, and your better best, » St. Jerome, via my Grandfather, who lived his entire life with BCM –over 80 years of it!