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Staff Spotlight: Ed!

What is your role with The 84 Movement?  

I mostly work on three areas.  I am overseeing The 84 Movement’s expansion to middle school students.  I work on creating and facilitating workshops.  And I get to work directly with the Statewide Leadership Team. 

Where are you from?  

I have lived my whole life in Massachusetts.  I grew up in Mansfield, I also lived in Beverly, and I now live in Middleboro. 

What is your go-to exercise song? 

I don’t really listen to much music while exercising, which I also don’t do that much of.  I do 40 squats every time I brush my teeth, so I guess my go-to sound is the buzz of my electric toothbrush. 

What does the Statewide Leadership Team know you for?  

I think I am best known as the inventor of the hit icebreaker, Biggest-Best.  It’s basically competitive show and tell.  Someone names a category; such as “something powerful”.  Everyone is then given one minute to go find an item that would be the biggest or best item that fits the category.   After the time is up, everyone shows off their items and explains why they chose it.  The person that named the category chooses a winner.  It’s a really fun icebreaker!   

What’s your favorite 84 team memory? 

There are so many good memories on the 84 team.  I think my favorite memory is last year’s virtual Kick Butts Day: Take Down Tobacco event.  The pandemic had just started and we had been planning for an in-person event, so we had to shift our plans and pull off a virtual event, back when they were not so common as they are now.  The Statewide Leadership Team did a great job preparing and leading the event and our staff handled the behind-the-scenes tech of the virtual event.  It was amazing!  We had almost 250 people attend, and we had our first of many successful virtual events. 

How have you changed because of The 84?  

I think I have grown a lot in my time working with The 84.  One of the biggest ways that I have changed is my understanding of white supremacy culture and my complicity in it.  You can’t dismantle what you cannot see.  I have been listening and learning a lot, I am doing the work to be better personally, and then making space so that BIPOC can lead.   

What is one thing that people who know you well all know about you?  

I like to have fun and keep things light.  I turn work into games and I like to make up jokes and try and get my friends to laugh.  I also really like sharing funny stories.  I can tell you some of my most embarrassing moments so we can all laugh at them together.   

What’s one thing you hope youth in The 84 remember this year?  

I hope that the youth remember this year as a time of overcoming.  It has been a challenging year.  There have been obstacles and it wasn’t easy.  There have been dark moments and there has been loss.  But we can make it.  These will be some of the most difficult times of our lives.  We can look back on these times and find hope that we can make it through the next challenge as well.  You are strong.  You are resilient.  You might get knocked down, but you get back up.