DALLAS - September 13, 2017 - It was standing room only at the Barack Obama Male Leadership Academy (BOMLA), as the 400 student population filled every seat in the auditorium. Principal Michael Bland greeted his students and introduced the day’s guest speaker, Anthony Sampson, President of the 100 Black Men of Greater Dallas/Ft. Worth and CEO, Sampson Financial Services, Inc. /Sampson Allstate Insurance agency.
Sampson, strode to the podium, knowing that he was on a mission to impact the hearts and minds of this large group of 6th - 12th graders. His first words were, “Believe. Achieve. Succeed.” If you want success, you have to believe that you can achieve it, then work like crazy to succeed at it. No shortcuts, no secret sauce formulas.
As the room stilled, Sampson walked the auditorium, looking students directly in their eyes, saying, “Boldly ask yourself, ‘Who am I? What are my opportunities?’” Once you start to find answers, Sampson said it will become clear that, “You will need education to live your career and education is at the center of it all.”
Sampson had the young men’s attention as he related this roadmap of success to his own life. “I knew I wanted to be a success but I didn’t stop there. What did success look like for me?” He explained that it would resonate in your “swag”. It would show in every aspect of your life, from how you dress, to how you speak, to how you act. “You already know this,” he said as he looked over the impressive group wearing blazers, slacks, and ties. “Your overall philosophy of life is already shining,” he said.
His final bit of advice was to commit to action every day. Education is the foundation for your success, he said. “Education will allow you to achieve your goals. And don’t forget your community and giving back.”
He said, “Dream with your eyes open! Write it down. Plan and execute, then revise, plan again, and execute.”
Principal Bland saw the fire in his students’ eyes and knew they were hooked. “They related because his message of, ‘Dreams + Goals = Reality.’ ties directly to our mission which is to develop young men into impactful leaders through the development of their intellectual, moral,
physical, social and emotional skills for the global society of tomorrow. And they listened; his words resonated with our young men because they are key components to becoming an impactful leader,” he said. He continued, “I’m excited about the opportunity for our students to learn from leaders that they can relate to. Mr. Sampson and The 100 are actively reaching back to our young people today by speaking to them in effort to encourage, inspire, and support them in their quest to become successful leaders. We look forward to continuing our partnership with The 100 Black Men of Greater DFW. This partnership may well set the standard for all of our mentoring programs to follow.”