Big Shoulders — Valerie Groth, Executive Life Coach and Motivational Speaker and Workshop Facilitator at Valerie Groth LLC and Founder of the Ryan Banks Academy

 |   Adam J. Hecktman

Adam Hecktman and Valerie Groth

Anyone who has worked at a public school is impacted in dozens of ways: many of the positive, some of them negative. When you are a social worker in an inner-city school, the impact is amplified. Social Workers are there, in the schools, working to identify the needs of individual students. Anything that interferes with their learning is open game. They work with students, school staff, service providers, and whenever possible, the parents.

In inner-city schools, the needs of the students can be voluminous, and the number of students requiring assistance just as large.  This was the experience of Valerie Groth, founder of Ryan Banks Academy. She worked with many students in crisis, providing them with counseling services, often on her own, to help them deal with situations that ranged from abuse, neglect, violence, mental illness, to malnutrition and hunger.

Valerie often wondered what it would be like if you took urban students out of the circumstances that led to those situations.  She thought about what an urban boarding school program might look like.  And then came the formative moment that led her to move from thought to action.  I hope you will be as inspired by this Advisor.TV Big Shoulders interview with Valerie Groth as I was.

To contact Valerie, email her at [email protected].

Adam J. Hecktman

You may recognize Adam. He’s a regular on TV, you can hear him on the radio, he’s penned numerous articles and is the co-founder of the Chicago City Data Users Group. But some of Adam’s most important work is done behind the scenes in his role as Microsoft’s Director of Technology and Civic Engagement for Chicago. Tech giants, universities and government leaders turn to Adam for guidance on all matters technology, and he happily obliges, helping Chicago overcome challenges and capitalizing on new, exciting opportunities.