With its 2020 theme of “Legends Never Die,” the 10th annual Boys Leadership Summit takes place March 28 on the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga campus.
Approximately 500 area middle and high school boys and their parents are expected to participate in a line-up of workshops focused on topics from the value of education to navigating social media to healthy relationships. The event is free and takes place in the UTC University Center from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m.
The summit was envisioned and first organized by a group of local men and leaders from civic, service and fraternal organizations who came together to provide an opportunity to support the development of African-American boys into successful, productive adults.
They were inspired, according to summit organizer Chris Ramsey, by author and radio personality Michael Baisden’s “1 Million Mentors” campaign presentation in Chattanooga in 2010, when Baisden issued a challenge to attendees: “What are you going to do when I leave Chattanooga?”
“Men involved with the BLS have the collective will to come together to take ownership of the problems facing our youth in our community,” Ramsey said. “There is not a lack of mentoring organizations, there is a lack of boys and men involved with the existing mentoring organizations.
“We will partner with existing, established mentoring organizations in our community to refer boys who attend the BLS and provide access to mentors who can get involved with their program.”
Saturday’s event will include free breakfast, lunch and souvenirs for all registered attendees. Prospective participants are encouraged to register early registration to enable organizers to more quickly serve those in attendance.
Pre-registration is possible at the event website: www.boysleadershipsummit.org
Participants also can register on-site on the day of the event, which also encourages participation by Hispanic boys and their parents and will have Spanish-language materials and translators available.
The full program lineup is available at the event website.