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Posts tagged with "Cleveland Browns First and Ten Coin Toss Captain"

Maria Schneider was honored as the First and Ten Coin Toss Captain at the Browns vs. Bengals game.

The opportunity to join the team captains on the field for the official coin toss moment was presented to her for the unwavering commitment to her school, students and community.

During the month of January, Schneider began to serve as the Play60 advisor at Brecksville-Broadview Heights Middle School. As such, she helps several students earn their way to National Fuel Up to Play Leadership Summit each year.

Through Fuel Up to Play60 they create wellness initiatives and involvement for students that’s free. She helps the kids gain leadership skills and allows them to give back to their school community.

She collaborated with the STEM program to build a bike that creates energy and produces electricity to make smoothies—a healthy morning treat for kids to start their day off right.

She believes that the reward of feeling like you made a difference, and paying it forward is all it takes for her to keep going and helping others.

Schneider started volunteering in the 8th grade with the Special Olympics and at her parents’ gymnastic school assisting kids with special needs.

Years later she’s led the Brecksville-Broadview Heights high school gymnastic team to 17 state championship titles of as the assistant gymnastics coach.

Her leadership and passion for youth has garnered undeniable respect and support from the school district, administrators and students.

One cause that is near and dear to her heart is pediatric cancer. She was so moved to make a difference she started a program to raise funds for children undergoing treatment.

Nine years ago she began a program that gave students the opportunity to pay it forward. Through Flashes of Hope, she led school in helping pay it forward for Pediatric Cancer research through the Kick It program. She has spearheaded and raised over $250K.

“There’s always time,” Schneider said.

“What’s important to you?”

“What do you find value in?

These are questions that she poses to her students and to other teachers alike.

She was inspired by a little girl at her school who was undergoing treatment at University Hospitals, but when she saw what Mrs. Schneider was doing for Kick It, she wanted to pay it forward to deliver FatHeads to every kid on her floor to make sure that they felt at home and could have what every other kid had in their room.

“If you can find something, it doesn’t have to be pediatric cancer, but anything that you help raise money or awareness for, that’s a start,” Schneider said.

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At select Cleveland Browns home games one lucky Browns fan, who exhibits the message of First and Ten and shares their story with us about how they #give10, is honored at midfield as the coin toss captain of the game. When the Browns played the Saints in the first preseason game of the season, Larry Keller was that honoree.

Larry was honored for his commitment to people and community. His heart and passion for helping others is unmatched. As the 2017-18 academic school year comes around the corner, Keller will enter his 10th year as the principal of Willoughby Middle School, continuing his 27-year career in public education.

Larry’s passion to become a teacher and a coach began in high school because he was very influenced by his high school coaches and teachers. After graduating from college he started the path of public school teaching and coaching.

Larry first connected with the Browns as a volunteer at the national 7-on-7 football tournament held at the NFL Rookie Symposium. He was granted the opportunity because he serves on the executive board of the Greater Cleveland Football Coaches Association.

While he no longer actively coaches, he is still heavily involved with the players and the coaches and the scholarship program that he had part in creating for Cuyahoga county football players who attend public, private and parochial high schools.

Keller says his dad was a youth league coach when he was coming up, but it was really the great mentors early in his career in Cleveland Heights and a high school in North Carolina, who he attributes most for influencing and mentoring him in what he enjoys doing so much today.

“They taught me simple goals like ‘the most important thing is putting the kids first, developing young men of character, not just about the x’s and o’s and proper technique,’” Keller said.

It excites him when the youth are taking their playing skills to the next level and pursuing higher education in addition to becoming a leader and a teammate that others can count on.

Keller believes it’s just as important that they would become good husbands and fathers and employees and community members.

“We love the game, we love playing the game, we love coaching the game but if we leave the game, we want to make sure they have character,” said Keller. “That was instilled in me very on.”

One of the things that he’s always tried to share with others is that it’s not about me, it’s about ‘we.’

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