Hoops for Hope Brings Beavercreek Community Together

With more than 900 tickets sold and over $2,000 raised, Beavercreek High School went above and beyond with their annual Service Challenge Project. Hoops for Hope took place on February 14th and benefited Project Brite Star, a local organization that has been involved in suicide prevention at Beavercreek School for about 15 years. The event included a student-filled gymnasium, a Teacher vs. Senior basketball game, a half time performance, relay races and a speech from Project Brite Star founder, Sue O’Rear and spokesperson and volunteer, Nick Maloney.

A few of us from AMF were able to stop by Hoops for Hope and the atmosphere within the Beavercreek Gymnasium was unbeatable. The stands were full of Beavercreek students, the band was in full swing and the basketball game was much more intense than we had anticipated (I have never seen a high schooler dunk on his math teacher before). Overall, it was amazing seeing the Beavercreek student body coming together in recognition of a cause that is important to their community. Here are a few shots from the event:

Hoops for Hope emphasized the importance of supporting one another, demonstrated the use of volunteering as a coping strategy and raised awareness on mental health and suicide. Beavercreek chose to benefit Project Brite Star so that the organization could continue to raise awareness of suicide prevention and offer relevant information to students within Beavercreek Schools and parents throughout the community. With over 1,000 students, faculty and staff in attendance, Hoops for Hope was an event that not only raised money for Project Brite Star but celebrated all that the organization has done for the community.

This year we have been delighted with all the hard work and mindfulness that has gone into the projects and are excited to see more finished products. Service Challenge Project deadlines are in April and the winners will be announced in the following weeks.

Did you attend the AMF Youth Leadership Seminar and have an #AMFChallenge Project in the making? We would love to see it! Email Sara at impact@munozfoundation.org to let us know how your project is going and how we can help. We can’t wait to see more completed projects!


Straight “A” Spotlight

Hey everyone, it’s the Straight “A” intern, Courtney!

It’s that time of year again! The nominations for our Straight “A” Scholarship are in full swing, but the deadline is quickly approaching.

The Straight “A” Scholarship is a great opportunity for high school students in the Tri-State area. This scholarship awards students who are pursuing Academic excellence, Athletic achievement, is Actively serving in the community while possessing a strong Ambition, a winning Attitude and the ability to overcome Adversity. Any student (freshmen, sophomores, juniors, and seniors) with a minimum of a 3.0 GPA can be nominated, but only seniors are eligible to receive the scholarship money.

We will be awarding thousands of dollars to eighteen senior finalists who will be honored at our luncheon at Jeff Ruby’s Steakhouse on Tuesday, April 16th. You do not want to miss out on this opportunity!

Let’s take a look at our Straight “A” Spotlight, where we feature past scholarship recipients, their stories and their recent successes. Here’s one of our 2018 Finalists, Ben Tobbe’s story.


“I had begun feeling pain in my lower abdomen during the summer before my junior year. I figured my pain would dissipate eventually, but it kept getting worse. I became kind of numb. It was a feeling that is so impossible to describe: I was feeling so much but also nothing at the same time. When the results from my CT scan came back, the doctors concluded that the pain was being caused by a large mass, believed to be a germ cell tumor. They wanted to bring me in for more tests the next day to see if it was malignant.

The next day, I was at the hospital waiting for a verdict. After what felt like an eternity, I was dubbed cancer-free. But there was still one problem. I still had an enormous mass in my body called a lymphatic malformation. But I wasn’t going to let it stop me from living my life.

Fighting through the pain so I can go to school was one thing, but getting myself ready to get back on the court was much tougher. After a summer of feeling out my body and fighting through days of pain where I couldn’t even walk, I took the court on November 28th for the first game of the season.

Throughout this last year I have come to realize that life will knock you down. It doesn’t matter how many times you fall, but how you many times you get back up.”

We contacted him to see what he was up to a year later, and this is what he had to say about the impact this opportunity had on his life.

“I am currently majoring in chemistry at Northern Kentucky University. College is definitely a big adjustment from high school, but I think I have started pretty well as I finished my first semester with a 4.0 GPA. I still plan on attending pharmacy school to earn my Doctor of Pharmacy degree after my undergraduate schooling.

The Anthony Muñoz Foundation and the Straight “A” Scholarship have, in my opinion, been a crucial part of my successful start to my college career. Worrying about how to pay for college is one of the biggest stressors in student has to face, but the scholarship allowed me to attend in NKU on a full scholarship (using my academic scholarship from NKU and the Straight “A” Scholarship)! I believe that lifting the weight of debt off of my shoulders allowed me to focus more on my studying and helped me achieve in all my classes.

I am very thankful for everything the Anthony Muñoz Foundation has provided for me!”

Ben is on the road to success and we can’t wait to see where this journey takes him!

Ready to nominate a deserving student? Click here.

You can find more information about the Straight “A” Scholarship opportunity at munozfoundation.orgIf you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to contact me at straighta@munozfoundation.org.  


Meet the Interns

Spring 2019 Interns!

Hello AMF supporters, friends and all! We hope the start of your 2019 has been as sweet as ice-cream! As the AMF year begins to start up again, the blog is back in action to keep you up to date and involved in all that we are up to. This spring, the Foundation has brought on five new interns to help run the show! We are each excited to start our journey with AMF and gain valuable work experience.

Kylie is a senior at Xavier University with a double-major in advertising and public relations and a minor in media studies. The Columbus native is the Programs Intern at AMF and is focusing on Whiz Kids and the Impact for Eternity Camp. Kylie was excited to join the AMF team because she wanted to gain knowledge and experience in a real-world environment. In the summer, you can find Kylie enjoying a vanilla soft-serve cone with rainbow sprinkles!

Sonny is a graduate from Xavier University where he majored in graphic design and minored in digital media. Sonny chose to come to AMF to gain experience and have the chance to help the Cincinnati community through non-profit work. As the Graphic Deign Intern, Sonny will oversee all marketing, print and digital materials. In the summer, Sonny enjoys a few scoops of Moose Tracks ice-cream on the beach in his home state of Delaware.

Cincinnati native Courtney is a senior at the University of Cincinnati with a communications major and public relations certificate. At AMF, Courtney is the Straight “A” Coordinator where she oversees awarding 18 high school seniors with scholarship opportunities. While Courtney needed an internship for graduation, she was excited to work with AMF because of the great opportunity and learning experience. When out on the town, Courtney enjoys Cookies & Cream ice-cream in a bowl with a cone on top.

As a communication major and public relations and deaf studies certificate at the University of Cincinnati, Maddie joined the AMF team to get more applicable experience in the communications field and the ability to better understand the variety of jobs. As the Hall of Fame Experience intern, Maddie oversees running the event’s silent auction. Maddie’s favorite place to enjoy Graeter’s Coconut Chocolate Chunk ice cream is straight out of the pint in her bed watching Netflix!

My name is Sara and I am a senior at Xavier University double-majoring in public relations and advertising with a minor in digital media. This spring, I will be the AMF Impact Intern focusing on Scholarship Fund, Service Challenge Projects and social media channels. The practical experience as well as the mission of AMF is what drew me to intern with the Foundation. In the summer, you’ll most likely find me enjoying Black Raspberry Chocolate Chip ice-cream at my home in Connecticut.

Make sure to stay tuned in on the blog this spring – with this group of interns and the work of AMF, big things are coming! Also, if you would like to gain experience and do work that impacts the Tri-State, make sure to contact Victoria at vknepp@munozfoundation.org to learn more about the internship opportunities! Fall 2019 is just around the corner.

See you next week!

-Sara 😊

Lakota East Gives Back

Students of Lakota East and Lakota West High Schools have taken on the initiative to kick-off their Service Challenge by uniting the two rival schools to collect toy donations through the Toys for Tots organization. To get a better understanding of this project, we talked to student leader, Grace Silverberg.

Grace and another student of Lakota East High School, Mark Krajewski came up with the idea of collecting toy donations, along with a few students from rival, Lakota West High School at the 2018 Youth Leadership Seminar in October. This was the first year Lakota East High School students could attend.

Grace shared that her counter-part Mark, showed a strong desire to collect toy donations on behalf of the Toys for Tots campaign. Mark’s wish to collect donations grew as he knew he could use resources throughout the community to do something that would benefit children this holiday season.

_“I believe I have been given so much in my life. There are kids that live 5 minutes away that are unable to receive gifts this holiday season and I want to change that.”.png

Grace and Mark rallied within their school along with members of the Student Athletic Leadership Team (SALT) to take make sure this project is a success. As a part of SALT, 40 student-athletes meet every two weeks to discuss ways to become better leaders for their teams as well as outside of sports.

On December 14th, 2018, Lakota East boys’ basketball team will be playing rival, Lakota West. Grace and Mark, along with their SALT team are asking that spectators of the game to bring a toy donation of at least $10 to donate to the Toys for Tots campaign. T-shirts will also be sold during the game to donate all proceeds to the Warren County Toys for Tots organization. To connect students of all ages through the “WE are Lakota” motto, students of Lakota East and West’s elementary and junior high schools are encouraged to bring in toy donations as well during school hours.

Lakota East and Lakota West would love to be able to fill a truck with toys to donate, but have a goal of at least 100 donations total. Grace’s expectation is that “… with the spirit of giving this holiday season, our Lakota community will give back to the children.”

To stay up to date with this Service Challenge and many more great projects, follow hashtag #AMFChallenge!

It’s Officially Service Challenge Project Season!

It is now officially AMF Service Challenge season! Students across the Tri-State area are using their motivation and inspiration from #EmpoweredCincy18 to impact their community one project at a time. Here’s a look at our first Service Challenge Projects of the season:

Cincinnati College Preparatory Academy

Cincinnati College Preparatory Academy (CCPA) hosted a “Think Pink Breast Cancer Awareness Walk.” This united the students of CCPA to raise money and participate in a walk from their school to the Cincinnati Museum Center. Students decorated signs to carry on their walk honoring all that have been affected by Breast Cancer. This event was especially important to the students of CCPA because two teachers, Ms. Debra Sellers and Ms. Ann Brinkley are both Breast Cancer Survivors. Students and staff of CCPA were encouraged to wear pink and rally together to bring awareness to those who have been affected by Breast Cancer. All money that was raised was donated to the American Cancer Society. Great job, CCPA!

Milford High School

Students of Milford High School have also started their Service Challenge project by partnering with “Wrapping Clermont Together” for this holiday season. Their goal is collect 75 baskets filled with health and beauty aids. They will be collecting donations up until December 4th, 2018 when they will be hosting a breakfast for community members to showcase their collections. At that time, they will also present the donations to the representatives from “Wrapping Clermont Together”, along with a check to The Mary Miller Foundation. We are excited to see the outcome!

Lakota East High School

Lakota East High School has also jump started their Service Challenge project by pairing with rival school, Lakota West. On December 14th, 2018 they will be hosting a toy drive to benefit Toys for Tots. This will take place during their boys’ varsity basketball game against Lakota West. They are encouraging fans to bring a toy of at least $10 value to donate to the cause. Can’t wait to see the impact this has this holiday season!

AMF Service Challenge is taking place now through Spring 2019! Did you attend #EmpoweredCincy18 and have a #AMFChallenge idea? Submit your project details and idea here!

To stay up to date with our AMF Service Challenge, follow hashtag #AMFChallenge on Twitter and Facebook!


YLS 2018 – Photo Recap

On Oct. 17, we welcomed over 1,000 high school students (from 80+ schools) to our 2018 Youth Leadership Seminar.

Our theme was all about being EMPOWERED. Students heard from six local speakers and participated in activities that focused on understanding themselves as leaders and how to then apply what they learned at the event in their schools and community.

Rather than just tell you everything that we did, we wanted to show you what our students experienced!



Anthony speaking to students.

Our six local speakers shared their stories and wisdom with our students, each with their own lessons on what it means to be EMPOWERED.

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Students worked with students from other schools in the breakout sessions to brainstorm ideas and share similarities and differences in their communities. This is when they were introduced to the AMF Service Challenge. In the challenge, schools are asked to develop project ideas that address needs in a community, whether local or international.

Some schools at the event already have potential ideas for their school projects.

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We will keep you updated as schools progress through the service challenge projects they decide to take on.

You can check out more photos from the event and learn more about what students took away from the event checking out the hashtag #EmpoweredCincy18 on our Twitter, Facebook and Instagram pages.

Thanks for checking in this week, we are already planning for next year’s YLS, we’re that excited about it!





Events Intern


YLS 2018 – Speaker Spotlight

We just can’t keep it to ourselves anymore – we love our speakers for this year’s Youth Leadership Seminar! We have an amazing and diverse lineup and their messages are sure to empower us all.


Ria DavidsonRia is the co-founder of the Dragonfly Foundation, a local organization that helps pediatric cancer patients and their families find “strength, courage and joy by providing emotional, relational and practical support”. Ria founded Dragonfly after serving as a caregiver during her mother-in-law’s battle with cancer and serving as a family support when her co-founder’s son became sick as well. Ria has over 25 years’ experience in public relations, communications management and consulting, which has helped with the growth of Dragonfly.


Nick Jackson Bio PicNick is the founder of Nick Jackson Speaks and Speakers of Love. He is a motivational speaker who has enlightened, entertained and championed the lives of over 755,000 high school and collegiate students to date. His motivational speeches are founded in the principles of loving thy neighbor and serving one’s community. He is the only keynote speaker to have presented for eight consecutive years at the Anthony Muñoz Youth Leadership Seminar.


Mike LaRosaMichael is the oldest son of company founder, Buddy LaRosa. As current CEO of LaRosa’s Pizzeria, he has been instrumental in developing the service culture within the organization, with a focus on leadership development. Before rising to the executive level, Michael was trained in all aspects of the family business, gaining a throughout understanding of the company.



Tyra PattersonTyra is currently the Community Outreach Strategy Specialist for the Ohio Innocence Project (OIP). Before joining OIP, Tyra spent 23 years in prison for murder and robbery, which were crimes she did not commit. She used her time in prison to educate herself by earning her GED, a steam engineer’s license, becoming a certified tutor and completed a paralegal training program. She now advocates on behalf of OIP and works to educate children about the importance of staying in school (she was a 6th grade drop-out) and avoiding drug use.



Joshua Reid HeadshotJoshua is a Digital and Social Media Marketing trainer, social media strategist for commercial brands and a national spokesman for General Nutrition Center (GNC). HE is the president and CEO of Drivenoptics, a full-service Digital and Social Media Marketing Agency in Cincinnati. He has worked with organizations such as Harley Davidson and the Mercedes Benz Club of America and taught courses in online marketing for companies.


Lauren WorleyLauren is currently the Chief Communications and Engagement Officer for Cincinnati Public Schools, the best performing urban school district in Ohio. Prior to working in Cincinnati, Lauren worked for NASA (yes, NASA), as Press Secretary and Senior Adviser. She also has worked for the ONE campaign, a global organization focused on eliminating extreme poverty and preventable disease. She is a fearless communicator and tireless champion for positive change.


With a lineup like this, how can the event be anything but inspiring? We can’t wait to hear each speaker’s unique story and their messages to students.

You can learn more about our Youth Leadership Seminar and see what’s coming next by checking out the hashtag #EmpoweredCincy18 on our Twitter, Facebook and Instagram pages.

Thanks for checking in this week, we can’t wait to hear from our students about what their favorite part of YLS was! Tune in next week to hear our recap.





Events Intern