"If I could give everybody one gift, it would be complete acceptance of themselves."
Dr. Stanley Williams believes that our job as humans here on Earth is to love others. But he says, "If you can't love you, you can't love anybody else."
So for the past 40 years, this cancer researcher by day has been spending weekends building the self-esteem of children through Judo. He describes it as "aiming them for adulthood."
Over the years, hundreds of students from a variety of backgrounds have taken Dr. Williams' Judo classes at the St. Paul Skyway YMCA. Through this martial art, he teaches them courage, self-confidence, patience and peaceful resolution.
To some students, he is like a surrogate father. Others see him as a mentor, tutor or friend. And many come back to thank him. One student is still studying with him after thirty years saying there's still more to learn. But Dr. Williams says he's the one who continues learning, even though it's clear that he has indeed succeeded at his job here on Earth.
"I get as much out of this as any student I've ever had."
Designated Charity: St. Peter Claver Catholic Church--McDonough Scholarship Fund
YMCA Twin Cities