Antonio first entered the foster care system as an infant. A few years later her grandmother was granted custody but he was removed because due to his grandmother’s health issues. He went back into foster care and moved around between foster and group homes before being placed with his godparents. Today Antonio is still in foster care with his foster parents. The most difficult challenge he faced in foster care was physically being part of a family but on the inside feeling alone. One day Antonio wants to own his own gym and dedicate his life to giving back to his community. He thinks it’s crucial to supply the gifts of life that supportive adults have instilled within him. Although it is very difficult knowing nothing about his father and dealing with his mother coming in and out of his life Antonio continues to push forward towards success day by day. Antonio takes pride in being able to help his grandmother with her medical issues, maintaining high grades and excelling immensely in football. Football has not only been a healthy coping mechanism but has helped him work constructively with authority figures and respect his elders. Although his experience in foster care was not easy by any means it was still a positive journey because “It taught me the foundation of life, which is learning what it takes to build a solid family.”

Team(s) or Cohort(s)
2009 Outstanding Young Leaders