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Hampton is Boys and Girls Club’s latest Leader of the Month

St. Elmo’s Shellie Hampton, 14, is being recognized for his leadership skills by the Boys and Girls Club of Alton Park. He is the October Leader of the Month and was officially recognized Nov. 1.

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Alton Park Boys and Girls Club program manager Michael Burton, left, is a mentor to Boys and Girls Club Leader of the Month Shellie Hampton, a mentor in his own right.

“I was shocked that I won Leader of the Month because I had good competition,” said Shellie. “I was so surprised, excited and happy.”

Alton Park Boys and Girls Club program manager Michael Burton said Shellie’s constant involvement in the club and overall character helped him get the award.

When did you first step foot on the Boys and Girls Club campus?

I started coming here in fifth grade as a student at Battle Academy. [He is now a freshman at Tyner High School.] I first came here with my cousin. It’s been so fun, so I just kept coming back. All the programs here are full of opportunities to benefit you in life from fitness to education.”

What is your routine at the Boys and Girls Club?

When I come here I talk to the staff for a few minutes at the front desk, then I go play basketball, then I play chess with Mike or help him with snacks for the kids. Then I play ping pong or pool and then I go to the computer lab to play games.

How do you serve in a leadership role at the Boys and Girls Club?

When kids need help on homework, I assist them. They look up to me and we play basketball.

How do you define being a good leader?

Being a good leader is not just being strict. You have to play with the kids. You don’t come at them all mean; you have to be cool and nice too.

What has Boys and Girls Club done for you?

Boys and Girls Club has done a lot for me. The staff caring for me shows me how to care for others.

What are your hobbies?

I like playing ping pong, video games and playing school sports: baseball, basketball, wrestling and soccer. Mr. Mike [at Boys and Girls Club] teaches me how to play chess and I teach the younger kids how to play chess too.

What are your future plans?

I want to go to the University of Tennessee at Knox ville. [His sister, Danielle Hampton, is a current student at UTK.] I want to study zoology and become a veterinarian. I like different types of animals. I like learning about their characteristics and habits.

Would you like to encourage others to come to Boys and Girls Club? Why?

I would encourage others to come to Boys and Girls Club and learn to be a leader too. If it was not for Boys and Girls Club I would not be where I am today. They saw something in me. It made me happy. The people here believe in me and that’s encouraging. I can do a lot more because of my mentors here.

Do you feel like the Boys and Girls Club helps keep you on track?

I would rather be here than out doing something that I should not do. I’m doing something that’s good here and it benefits me in life. You may play basketball at the Boys and Girls Club. Then you may play basketball at Tyner and get a basketball scholarship to play in college. Then you might end up playing in the NBA one day, all because people at the Boys and Girls Club taught you to shoot better and how to handle the ball better.

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