Column: Mentoring's huge impact goes beyond lives of youth




While managing local utility services, Mike Martin found a new way to energize his community, and students are starting to benefit.

Martin, in his role as president of the Lebanon Kiwanis Club, recruited numerous partners to create a mentoring initiative in the local public school district. Martin persuaded, encouraged and cajoled the mayor, the school superintendent, a hospital CEO, the local United Way, the community foundation and several faith-based organizations to work together on the design of the mentoring program, the recruitment of volunteers and the delivery of mentors through the Boys and Girls Club.

In the program’s second year, 46 students are being mentored, with 25 more scheduled to start in the fall.

“What a generous human being,” said Kelly Sollman, principal of Hattie B. Stokes Elementary School, as she described Martin’s unique community leadership. “He has gone out of his way to make a difference, especially in the life of the child he is mentoring.”

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