Anthony Tucker (center in photo with NFL QB Josh McCown on the right) is also a coffee bean who has refused to let circumstances define his life. He grew up surrounded by drugs and gangs and for years thought his only viable future occupation was to be a drug dealer. As he got older and saw his friends join gangs, die, or go to jail he knew he wanted more for his life and future. He didn't want a life and career that destroyed lives, neighborhoods and families. He wanted to be a leader that helped others prosper. His desire and path led him to become an educator and he's now an assistant principal at a preschool in the South Bronx.
Anthony has also written two children's books:
A Rocky Start
, which teaches children how to tie a tie. He created a program at his Pre-K School that invites fathers to read to the students and also created mini libraries at playgrounds around the Bronx to encourage kids to read more.
After surviving his rough childhood, Anthony could have left his neighborhood but he decided to stay to be a role model for children. In doing so he's transforming his community like a coffee bean from the inside out.
It's easy to look around and say we don't have the resources we need to be successful. It's common for people to blame their circumstances and environment for why they haven't accomplished more. It's convenient to say that a lack of commitment from others is the reason for your lack of effort and results. But Tiawana, Anthony and other coffee beans like them demonstrate that you always have the power to create positive change.
You don't have to let your circumstances define you. You can define your circumstances. No matter how difficult the environment, you have the power to transform it.
Just like the coffee bean, the power is on the inside.
Read Jon Gordon and Damon West's
Wall Street Journal