Former Redskin Ken Harvey Leads By Example

Glenn Franco SimmonsAnalyst INovember 13, 2016

Four-time Pro Bowl linebacker Ken Harvey hopes his example of determined play and a moral barometer will help in his new position as the Washington Redskins’ director of responsibility.

Harvey will also direct the Washington Redskins Charitable Foundation that seeks to match worthwhile programs with community needs that include youth development, community service, health and wellness, and literacy.

One thing that is missed in remembering Harvey’s successful NFL career is the fine man he has continued to become after the NFL. It’s a regular “roads-to-riches” story that warms one’s heart. Harvey, blessed with God-given athleticism, earned his way into the NFL by working hard, persevering, sacrificing and committing himself to playing his heart out.

One of the attributes that I most respect Harvey for is his perseverance that enabled this high school dropout to be graduated from U.C. Berkeley. More than all that, however, is the fact that Harvey has taken his success on the field and in college by parlaying it into a career as a children’s author and philanthropist.

On’s profile of him, it says that Harvey “is a study in faith, hope and perseverance.” “Ken’s two sons initially inspired Ken to write children’s stories about how people of different ethnic origins and races can get along and work together,” Amazon states.

In his book titled “When Chocolate Milk Moved In,” Harvey took that inspiration and wrote a book about residents in a “… magical refrigerator {who} live peacefully together until a newcomer arrives in the ’fridge. But the Odor Boys, always sniffing for trouble, suggest maybe there is something wrong with the new arrival because he looks different.

Now it’s up to the wise Icicle Pops to teach their friends a valuable lesson about love and diversity.” That book is part of Harvey’s “Life in the Fridge” series. If you have children, it might be worth taking a look at because tolerance is something that all children should be taught.

Harvey is also a powerful and popular motivational speaker. As featured on JAKA (Journey After Knowledge = Action), “… Ken encourages and empowers others to realize ... their abilities and talents. His “can-do” attitude and zest for life {are} a true inspiration to those who have a chance to hear him speak.

“Ken utilizes his years in the NFL and subsequent successes in life as an author, businessman, husband and father as a platform to speak on leadership, motivation and teamwork,” JAKA states, noting that his clients have included the Pentagon and NASA.

Just reading about his story is inspirational, even though I’ve never had the pleasure to hear him speak. Let’s hope his tenure with the Redskins will help any players who are on the edge of making mistakes and getting in trouble. If this week is any indication, the Redskins can really use him.