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Character Loves Company: Defining the "Teachable Moments" in Sports - A Guidebook to Character Literacy Development Paperback – September 15, 2016
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About the Author
Pete Paciorek has been involved in coaching and mentoring youth through sports for the past 20 years. As a previous professional baseball player for nine years (Los Angeles Dodgers and San Diego Padres organizations), and a member of a family that has produced eight professional athletes who have been members in MLB organizations, as well as 11 collegiate student-athletes, Pete knows what it takes to succeed in the athletic arena, as well as in life. Pete has helped hundreds of amateur athletes advance their careers to the next level, as the previous head instructor for baseball at IMG Academy, as well as a collegiate head coach. However, Pete's emphasis with youth and amateur athletes has always placed character development as the highest priority. Pete holds a Master’s Degree in Organizational Communication and Leadership with an emphasis in Public Speaking (CSULA, 2006), and he is currently completing a Master’s Degree in Sport Management from the University of Florida (May, 2017). This book on the topic of character development in youth and amateur athletics is geared toward parents, coaches, administrators, sport management students, and advanced-level student-athletes who seek to better understand the many life-long values of sports. Over the past year and a half, Pete has given more than 25 grassroots-level community talks at schools and recreation centers on the need to instill more deliberate character emphasis through the vehicle of sports. Through his non-profit, Pete is active in the sports community facilitating his 8-week character development curriculum for various groups of young high school and junior high school student-athletes at local recreation centers and schools. Pete strongly believes that character development builds toughness and resiliency that will promote the future success in our youth. Discussing character with young student-athletes is his passion. Pete is an Affiliated Scholar and Athlete Development Ambassador for the University of Florida’s Sport Management program, where he has also served as a graduate research assistant.
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“Character Loves Company” is clear, concise and masterfully executed around 25 different character values. Not only does Coach Paciorek offer his own views based on a lifetime of being not only a student-athlete, professional athlete and coach, but he has also done the legwork and interviewed countess professional and amateur current and former players and coaches and has skillfully interwoven their messages into his arguments.
Perhaps, most useful are Coach Paciorek’s chapter ending guides and exercises that coaches can take to the court, the field or diamond today to help them teach the character values that are crucial to today’s student-athletes. These lessons, if taught, will last a lifetime. As a former coach and dad of an 11 year-old baseball player, I am thankful for the messages contained throughout this book and have been sharing many of them with my son, both directly and indirectly. For example, “you either win, or you learn.”
This book is a gift to the culture of sports and we would all benefit from the adoption of the messages contained within it. I plan to share it with the coaches involved with my son’s organization.
Matt Savely, Toronto
Over the last decade, the objective of youth sports seems to be transitioning from overall player development and personal growth to organizations using eager, young players as a means to an end - typically $ profit and bloating coaches’ egos. Pete’s book reminds us what sport is truly about through meaningful interviews with character leaders who have reached the pinnacle of success.
We as coaches, athletic administrators and parents of student-athletes have not only an opportunity, but the responsibility to help turn things around and this book provides the substance and the tools.
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36 year high school teaching and coaching career, I can definitely say without