Page 11 - LifelineInaugural
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Ramon Alexander                                        DYG  seeks out those young individuals  that  have

                                                               grade point averages of 3.0 and higher and helps them
                                                               nurture  and  enhance  the skills  they already  posses
        The Distinguished Gentleman                            and add to them by teaching what it means to be an
                                                               effective leader in their schools and their community.
                                                by Charles Gee
                                                               “We at DYG believe in a thing called servant leadership.
                                                               That means that you realize that your leadership calling
                                                               is bigger than you; that the calling is significant enough
                                                               that you would sacrifice anything for the sake of your
                                                               community,” explained Alexander.

                                                               When a child attends the summer academy at one of
                                                               DYG’s chartered locations, they are expected to read
                                                               books, forge brotherhood  amongst relative strangers
                                                               like themselves, compete in debates and a host of other
        Ramon Alexander carries the demeanor of a man twice  activities all in the span of two weeks. The end result
        his age, the confidence of a lion four times his weight,  is a more “polished” young student, one that is ready
        and the wisdom of a grandfather.                       to lead and to spread his knowledge to his community.

        “I don’t know where I get it from,” said Alexander, on  “I  don’t  characterize  it  as  joy  or  fulfillment  when  I
        his vast maturity. “I have just always hung around older  see these young  men mature and  become  better
        people so the maturity just rubbed off on me.          gentlemen,” said Alexander. “I see it as purpose. It’s
                                                               my responsibility. It’s what God has put in my life to do.”
        In high school he served as class president. In college
        he served as student body president  as well as a  While many men Ramon’s age are preparing for a night
        member of  the  Board of  Trustees for  Florida  A&M  out on the town, he’s busy preparing a group kids for a
        University. By the time he reached the age of 21, he had  debate the next day. Surely, he would probably like to
        announced his candidacy to run for city commissioner.  go out and spend leisure time selfishly, but he knows
        The next year he would  begin  to aid the Mayor of  that’s not his purpose; it’s to continue to serve… as a
        Tallahassee, John Marks, by specializing in community  leader.
        and external affairs. Quite frankly, Alexander’s resume
        is too lengthy to run down. But if you were to ask him
        what accomplishments make  him most  proud surely
        one would be, The Distinguished Young Gentlemen of             DISTINGUISHED
        America also known by its acronym, DYG. It’s a non-            YOUNG GENTLEMEN
                                                                                 OF AMERICA INC.
        profit organization that helps African-American males
        in high school realize and unlock their full potential.

        “DYG  is laying the foundation to  breakdown  the
        generation of cycles in our community. We are not only
        changing  the perception of  African-American males,
        but providing them with the tools necessary to change
        the world,” said Alexander.

        When asked about prior leadership positions he has
        held, Alexander quickly shies away from the spotlight
        and places the focus back onto DYG.

        “My leadership experiences taught me that there are
        no natural born  leaders. What  we teach at  DYG  of
        America is that effective leadership  does not come
        natural, it’s an acquired skill,” said Alexander.

       LIFELINE magazine                                                                                       11
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