Article written by Nashua Telegraph Staff Writer, Don Himsel.
NASHUA, NH, November 8th, 2015 – Brendan Keegan remembers his defining leadership moment well.
It was his third or fourth practice as a boy playing for the Nashua Steers, said the Nashua businessman and philanthropist. His coach asked who wanted to be captain. Keegan volunteered, ready to give it a shot.
“I just jumped into the middle of the circle and started leading calisthenics. What I realized is, I liked it. I liked having a little bit more responsibility from the coach. I liked having a little bit more respect from my peers. I liked being cheerleader for my teammates and going, ‘Come on, guys, we can do this.’ ”
“I really think that was when I realized I liked to be a leader. I talk about getting bit by the leadership bug sometimes. I think that’s when it took off for me.”
Over the years, Keegan, chief of velocityHUB in Nashua, turned that moment into stints as a student government leader at Bishop Guertin High School and at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute and a successful career in business.
That moment, he said, started him down the road of developing leadership strength, and, eventually a desire and concrete plan designed to foster that same life-building skill in others.
Talking in his downtown office on Thursday, Keegan said, “I attribute that back to that simple football practice at Artillery Field.”
Keegan’s velocityHUB will host its second Victory Academy on Saturday, Nov. 14, at the St. Patrick’s Church gymnasium in conjunction with the Nashua Police Athletic League. The free program runs from 10 a.m.-1:30 p.m.
Signups for the youth leadership event are at www.Victory.Academy/PAL.
“Last year focused on what we call the Victory Foundation, which is the nine attributes of winners. This year, we are talking about the six rocks of sportsmanship.”
About 20 leadership coaches culled from youth athletics from throughout southern New Hampshire will help lead the 200 kids through a dynamic day of introspection and activities designed to foster leadership awareness and skills.
“We all have a similar vision. We all like giving back. We all like helping kids. They’re around kids and they know what’s relevant,” Keegan said.
The academy and its principals are taught in Ivy League and similar top-tier athletic departments across the country.
“The program we’re running is one that we ran for seven of the 11 NESCAC (New England Small College Athletic Conference) schools this year. We actually ran this exact program at Bowdoin, Middlebury, Amherst, Trinity, Connecticut, Bates and Tufts.”
“The concepts of sportsmanship in third grade or a senior in college, or for that matter, the Patriots, are the same,” said Keegan. “How you train it is very different.”
“What’s nice about this program is that it looks at sportsmanship from a broader perspective,” said Victory Academy Executive Director Amanda Rogers. “As a leader, what do you need to do to instill sportsmanship on your teams? It’s been impactful in that we can take concepts that can be complicated and simplify them.”
The day of the event, participants will be assigned to a team in groups of about 25. They will be tutored in leadership concepts by a coach at six different stations. Lessons are reinforced with activities and use of a “play book.” At the end of the day, participants take a pledge and receive a certificate signed by them and a parent… CONTINUE READING THE FULL ARTICLE ON NASHUATELEGRAPH.COM