Gentlemen by Choice Community Development Corporation (GBC) is a national nonprofit organization founded in 2014 in Las Vegas, Nevada by two educators, Richard Jack III and Antanus Pullum. These two gentlemen were brought together by a common belief that many young males from underserved communities were deficient in social and emotional skills. This lack of development was evident in student choices, behaviors and attitudes that impeded academic achievement. Together, they believed that deliberately addressing the social and emotional needs of male youth would lead to academic achievement.
Determined to make a difference, the founders assumed the challenge of mentoring 12 middle school aged males at a local community center. By providing a new style of mentoring in an open forum, they achieved success with the youth which provided the motivation needed to expand the program into a local at-risk elementary school in an underserved community where they worked. The program was designed to focus on four key areas; leadership, image (dress and appearance), financial management and etiquette training (L.I.F.E.). Lessons include foundational information on leadership, effective communication practices, public speaking, the importance of politeness, eye contact, impact of public image and proper dinning idiosyncrasies. Local public servants, community leaders and business professionals served as subject experts partner with GBC to deliver content; exposing youth to real life experiences. The curriculum-based lessons and hands on experiences encouraged retention. The curriculum aligns with social and emotional learning competences.
Richard Jack III (Top) and Antanus Pallum (Lower)
Historically, GBC has targeted young males from underserved communities. GBC serves as both a prevention and intervention model, using evidence-based and nationally recognized best practices. Program implementation has started as early as third grade. In less than three (3) years, the program expanded from 12 mentees to 50 mentees in Clark County, Nevada. In December 2015, GBC was awarded 501(c) 3 non-profit status. The program expanded in 2016, establishing chapters (programs) in Hawaii and Washington, serving an additional 55 mentees and their families. A year later in 2017, GBC added another location and three (3) more chapters, to include expanding the program to include a young ladies chapter.
GBC was founded on three (3) basic principles: Commitment, Discipline and Consistency. GBC’s commitment to a professional approach in executing its mission, the discipline to follow up and follow through and the consistency of high-level evidence-base services has been the catalyst to rapid growth and continued success.
"If you can fill the unforgiving minute with sixty seconds worth the distance run. Yours is the earth and that is within in. And which is more, you'll be a man my son!"
"If" By Ruyard Kipling