Annual ambassadors signing day

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-- Atlanta Braves President to present graduates and ‘Community Champions’ custom rings symbolizing commitment to transforming lives through baseball --

June 11, 2013 (ATLANTA) – L.E.A.D., an Atlanta-based non-profit that teaches life skills through baseball, announces its 4th annual Ambassadors Signing Day, which will recognize five inner-city youth who are graduating from the L.E.A.D. program. The program will also honor ten “Community Champions,” distinguished members of the Atlanta community whose advocacy and support have significantly bolstered L.E.A.D.’s success. The ticketed event will take place on June 18, 2013 from 6pm – 8pm at Georgia Public Broadcasting, 260 14th Street NW, Atlanta, GA 30318. Sam Crenshaw, sports reporter and anchor for 11Alive News, will serve as emcee.
L.E.A.D.’s mission is to leverage the relationship between education, athletics and service to create positive outcomes for at-risk, minority youth in metro Atlanta.

Since its inception in 2007, 100 percent of LEAD Ambassadors have graduated from high school and 90 percent have received baseball scholarships to four-year colleges and universities, including Tuskegee University, Florida A&M University and Morgan State, among others.

During the event, Atlanta Braves President John Schuerholz will present honorees with personalized rings donated by Jostens, a leading national custom jewelry designer and producer. L.E.A.D. collaborated with Jostens to create the original designs, which feature a diamond inset of the organization’s signature “A” insignia.
“These rings symbolize more than baseball. They represent excellence and achievement both on and off the field,” said C.J. Stewart, co-founder, L.E.A.D. “We hope each recipient wears them with pride and ultimately inspire others to greatness.”

The following 2013 L.E.A.D. Ambassadors will be recognized:

  • Darvell Booker: Tri-Cities High School; Will attend Paine College in Augusta, GA

  • Marcus Hodge: Southwest Dekalb High School; Will attend Southern University in Baton Rouge, LA

  • Joseph McCrary: Southwest Dekalb High School; Will attend Savannah State University in Savannah, GA

  • Cedric Reed: The New Schools at Carver; Will attend Paine College in Augusta, GA

  • Cornelius Reed: The New Schools at Carver; Will attend Paine College in Augusta, GA

L.E.A.D., page 2

“Through the tireless support of our Community Champions, L.E.A.D. is better equipped to focus on connecting and transforming communities through the game of baseball,” added Kelli Stewart, co-founder and executive director, L.E.A.D. “Their efforts help the organization provide the optimal atmosphere for L.E.A.D. participants to learn, compete and have fun as they develop into future leaders.”
The 2013 L.E.A.D. “Community Champions” include:

  • Stan Conway: Majestic Realty, vice president, director of development

  • Charlie Finch: The Lovett School, assistant athletic director; LEADership council member

  • Kerwin Giles: L.E.A.D., middle school director

  • Jason Heyward: Atlanta Braves; L.E.A.D. pro player board member

  • Rendell Jackson: Atlanta Public Schools athletics, middle school program manager

  • Bill Mclellan: L.E.A.D., board chairman

  • Mike Plant: Atlanta Braves, executive vice president of business operations

  • Dave Preter: Georgia’s Own Credit Union, president

  • Tommy Thomas: Tommy’s Barber Shop, owner

  • TJ Wilson: Atlanta Police Department (retired); community coach and mentor

L.E.A.D. is an official partner of Atlanta Public Schools through the Atlanta Partners for Education (APFE). In addition to Jostens, 2013 Signing Day corporate sponsors include Georgia’s Own Credit Union, Montag & Caldwell and Georgia Public Broadcasting. To purchase tickets or for more information, visit or call (404) 662-2538.

About L.E.A.D.

Founded in 2007 by C.J. Stewart, a former MLB player and his wife Kelli, the L.E.A.D. organization (Launch, Expose, Advise, Direct) was established to develop inner city youth into college bound civically engaged student-athletes who are prepared to win at the game of life. Through comprehensive programming both on and off the field 100% of Ambassadors have graduated from high school and enrolled into college, and 90% have earned baseball scholarship opportunities. For more information visit


Kelli Stewart, (404) 662-2538,

LA Campbell, (404) 593-7145,
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