“Coach McKenzie delivers a clear and concise message that empowers his audience. In addition to mapping out a plan for success, he also engages those listening by bringing positive energy and enthusiasm to every word he speaks. I’ve heard many speakers through the years and he is certainly among the best.”
“What an inspiring man and encouraging message and example of “top leadership” and humility. I appreciated his honesty, faith, and display of character. I also enjoyed the Q&A with the players that joined him.
“We all need to hear the message of using the 86,400 seconds we have in a day for a good purpose and the influence we can have on other people’s lives by investing in people and truly caring about the person, not just the sport.
“Thanks for bringing in an excellent speaker and role model.”
“Coach McKenzie is celebrated for his ability to build winning basketball teams. The way I see it, his greatest success isn’t in what he does in basketball. At its core, what Coach is doing is building great young men – repeatedly, consistently, dramatically. He is forming great young men who distinguish themselves through academic excellence, hard work, mutual respect and a commitment to a sound set of values and principles that will guide them for the remainder of their lives. The championship trophies would not exist at all without what Coach has done to form the hearts and minds of these young men.
“It is particularly remarkable that Coach is making such a success of kids who have so much stacked against them — which is proof, in my mind, that our most neglected and broken communities are as they are not because of something inherently wrong with them, but because there aren’t enough people, like Coach, that care to make the necessary sacrifices of love, accountability, consistency and mentorship with the youngest of those communities, thereby intervening in the too-oft repeated cycle of despair, anger, violence, and poverty.
“When Coach McKenzie delivered his speech to my Rotary club, there were tears in the audience. Such is the power of his message.”
“I just wanted to make sure you understand how good of a job you are doing with your young men. They battled hard and I was very impressed with them all night long. But I wanted to pin-point something that deserves a compliment.
“At the end of the game when the two teams huddled up at half court to pray together there were some pretty cool moments. First, your guys decided to mix it up and not all stand together but intermingle with each of our guys. This was a great moment.
“Then, one of your players came over to one of our captains and gave him the opportunity to pray for the group. He was very honored to be asked to pray. We know that not all schools even allow this. So, we want to say “thank you” for allowing us to be a part of this great moment.
“Then at the end, some of your guys told our guys to stay and chanted “family” together with our guys. Your young men showed so much class and they deserve to be acknowledged for showing such good sportsmanship and class throughout the game and evening. Please let them know that we have nothing but respect for them and we wish you all the best of luck going forward in the tournament.”
Head Boys Basketball Coach
“Larry McKenzie brings a sense of urgency to the work of school change by establishing with love and vision the stakes of the work in terms of the students and families most affected by leadership and policy decisions.
“Larry couples his inspirational message with deep expertise about the work of school leadership and organizational change. Folks lucky enough to hear from Larry will emerge heartened, activated and ready to pursue the work of educational justice with a greater sense of purpose and determination.“
Katie Barrett Kramer
The School Leadership Project