Honoring a humble champion, in front of a packed ballroom!

The Walla Walla Valley Chamber of Commerce hosted their 137th Annual Community Awards last week, and one of Community Resilience Initiative's trainers-- Tony McGuire-- was recognized for his service to our community. As an instructor of basic carpentry at the local Washington State Penitentiary, Tony is so much more than that- he is a mentor, champion, communicator and lifelong learner of what makes us human together. His gift to the world is his ability to share the insights of the transformative power he discovered through the Adverse Childhood Experiences Study, Epigenetics, Brain development and the Resilience literature, when he first found CRI.  His ability to share his personal journey whether to inmates or in presentations to the statewide community college and the Department of Corrections systems, or while perched on the edge of a desk speaking to a MSW student class or on the floor with fifth graders at a local elementary school-  he has the gift of speaking from the heart and painting the vision of hope, mastery, and healing. His favorite line is, "Will I be your chaos or your calm?" His response to the award was one of gratitude and humility, thanking those in his life who supported his journey and hold him close. I was honored to be invited to sit with his family and friends and share his award. As another recipient said, "It's the people who make the place [we call home]", I can attest that Tony is one of those people who make Walla Walla the special community it is. And oh, by the way, did I mention he is a volunteer fire fighter, emergency ski patrol, rec league coach, husband, dad to two fabulous teens, and son of an amazing Mom? Congratulations, Tony, for the recognition by the Chamber and your communityTony McGuire award

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