July 7, 2022

Art & Lifestyle:

Deputies Speak to Young Men About Life, Leadership

Young men

Representatives from the St. Mary’s County Sheriff’s Office recently spoke to the young men who are members of a local group called EMPOWER, which stands for Empowering Males to Build Opportunities for Developing Independence. At the Nov. 19, 2016, presentation, the speakers talked about law enforcement interactions, life decisions, and leadership.

EMPOWER is a division of the Tri-County Alumni Chapter of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority Inc. The group invited Capt. Steven Hall and Cpl. Todd Fleenor of the sheriff’s office K9 Unit to speak as part of their mission to build a better community. After speaking, Capt. Hall and Cpl. Fleenor concluded the event at the Lexington Park Library with an educational canine demonstration.

Capt. Hall focused his talk on the importance of self-image. “One of the most important things in life is your self-image. Always carry yourselves proudly with a positive self-image, and others will follow suit. Your truest friends and those who love you most will nourish this and help you along life’s path to success. Steer clear of those who entice you to do things that hurt your self-image or lessen your self-worth,” he said.

Capt. Hall also shared his “D principle” – Decisions Determine your Destiny, and recommended that the young men choose positive role models to help guide them in selecting goals for their own lives.

Capt. Hall had another D to talk about: Documents. He told the young men that everything they do and everything they’ve done is documented, “including your educational performance, your driving record, criminal history, your credit, and your social media accounts – they all document who you are as a person.” He told the young men that the people who make decisions that can influence their success in life will use these documents. “Make sure your ‘documents’ portray you in a positive light and ensure a bright and prosperous future for yourselves.”

During his speech, Cpl. Fleenor stressed the importance of education, both in school and out. He explained, “Just because you finish with school doesn’t mean you stop learning. You will continue to learn and grow throughout your life and your future careers.”

Cpl. Fleenor demonstrated the results of determination with his dog Largo, a drug-detecting and patrol dog. “K9 Largo knows that if he is successful in his job, and is determined to do a good job, he will be rewarded,” Cpl Fleenor said. “The same goes for you – if you are determined to have a successful life, you’ll do everything you can to get there, just like Largo.”

For more about Lexington Park, visit the community’s Leader member page.

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