Broadcasting success, the Aventura Marketing Council/ Chamber of Commerce March Breakfast Meeting in partnership with Complete Athletes hosted by Atlantic Broadband recognized inspiring athletes who give back to their communities.
The event featured Miami Dolphins alumni Vernon Carey, Channing Crowder and OJ McDuffie; and Raiders alumni DeMarcus Van Dyke. Mario Smith, who played in the Canadian Football League, stood in for LA Rams quarterback Kayvon Webster, unable to attend due to an injury. Faheem Ali, Founder/President of Complete Athletes, served as emcee and presented Complete Athletes awards to panelists, who often help him on his student programs. Complete Athletes conducts programs for college prep, professional development and life skills training for student athletes.
AMC Chair Gary Pyott of Association 1st , joined by Atlantic Broadband Vice President Regan Anderson and Marketing Director Maia Mediavilla, welcomed hundreds of business and community leaders as well as young athletes gathered at the Newport Beachside Hotel. Anderson and Mediavilla shared the sentiment, “Atlantic Broadband takes pride in supporting local businesses, civic and educational organizations. We thank the AMC for this opportunity to recognize wonderful athletes for giving back.”
Ali noted, “We have to give back to those who are going to be leaders of the future. Muhammad Ali said, ‘Don’t count the days, let’s make the days count.’ These athletes are the ones that make the days count, without getting paid. They do it from their heart.”
The meeting’s next quarter focused on the athletes’ winning giving-back game plans.
The Vernon Carey Foundation creates programs designed to encourage the improvement of youth while enhancing educational, recreational and economic opportunities. Carey was the Dolphins 2008 NFL Man of the Year and 2007 Dolphins Community Service Award winner. Through his Foundation, he helps coordinate a father and son billiards tournament, father and daughter dance, golf tournament and back- to -school events. Carey explained, “I grew up in an environment where kids didn’t have a lot of options. I started this foundation with a vision of hope. I want kids to see different things.”
Channing Crowder co-founded an annual fishing tournament to make a difference in the lives of youngsters in the Boys & Girls Clubs of Broward. He also runs youth football camps and hosts holiday toy drives. “It’s all about the desire to promote the welfare of others,” Crowder said. “I was an underprivileged kid and without the Boys & Girls Clubs, that better path wouldn’t have been there, so that’s why I support them. I don’t like the word ‘can’t.’ It’s hard to save the world, it’s easy to change it. Find who you can help with what you can do well – and do it.”
OJ McDuffie created the Catch 81 Foundation, which raises funds for children’s charitable causes and is dedicated to “Changing the lives and future of our youth.” He also emcees an annual Halloween event benefitting 2-1-1 Broward, connecting callers to trained crisis specialists. “Giving back is way more important than anything we did on the football field,” McDuffie said. Emotionally remembering his late mother he recalled, “My mom said, ‘I like hearing what kind of football player you are, but I really enjoy the type of person you are.’ Keep giving back, that’s what it’s all about – show up.”
UM alum DeMarcus Van Dyke is now the Defensive Quality Control Analyst for the Hurricanes. He participated in Coach Mark Richt’s Paradise Camp for teenage recruits, taught by UM legends. He shared, “I was blessed to play sports and use that as a platform to give back and say, ‘You can get into the NFL and do the same thing I did.” Van Dyke has been inducted into the Boys & Girls Clubs of Miami Hall of Fame. He also benefited as a youth from participating in the TruSports Foundation, founded by Mario Smith.
After his football career, Smith started the TruSports Foundation to be a positive influence and mentor young athletes. Smith also spoke about Kayvon Webster’s GameChangers Foundation, providing at-risk youth with sports training, scholarships, after- school and outreach programs promoting educational advancement, fitness and overall wellness. “We give kids tools to excel in life,” he said. “TruSports Foundation is opening TRU Prep Academy for young men in grades 6 to 12. We’ll be teaching them about career development and affiliated roles such as commentator, coach or agent. We want them to see opportunities the world has for them.”
Atlantic Broadband, the nation’s ninth largest cable provider, has more than doubled its existing fiber footprint by purchasing the entire South Florida fiber network from FiberLight. Atlantic Broadband delivers topnotch TV, Internet and phone services to nearly half a million subscribers in 11 states.
Residential Gigabit Edge and business class Pro Gigabit Edge services give customers access to fast Internet speeds, and enables multiple user connectivity without interruptions. Business owners, condo boards and homeowners appreciate entertainment and communication services with flexibility and reliability from a state-of- the-art network backed by responsive, personalized service.