A native of Baltimore, MD. Derek Batttle first learned about the Certificate in Sport Sustainability and Leadership while volunteering at the Green Sport Alliance Summit. The flexibility of a curriculum offered completely online, allowed Derek to start making a difference in the community.
By January 2017 Derek and his former high school teammate, Keon Williams, had joined forces, combining their professional backgrounds and their love for football to positively impact the community. The result: Play Fresh an organization seeking to use sports as a way to educate the youth on how to live healthy and sustainable lifestyles.
Play Fresh enrolls athletes and sports as a vehicle for change, hoping to appeal socially to high school teens and adolescents. While doing so, t-shirts provided to the youth are printed using eco-friendly dyes and water bottles are reusable and BPA free. There are an abundance of organizations that host community clean ups and promote environmental awareness, however at times these organizations are not able to appeal to an audience that is not concerned with their cause. At Play Fresh participants are met on a common ground, and promote sustainability while they have the opportunity to improve their athletic skills through high level competition and coaching.
In the next five years, Derek hopes to have strengthened his working relationships and expanded his network of support with other community members and organizations. The first year of Play Fresh was spent researching and testing programs in the Baltimore area. Next year, he hopes to organize more community events and refine the communication and marketing strategies. His plan for years four and five is to continue the Play Fresh programs in Baltimore, in addition to expanding to other regions outside of the Baltimore-Washington metropolitan region.
Play Fresh has a team of diverse backgrounds which provides balance in programming, marketing, communication, and decision making.
Ena Linton- Chief Operating Officer: Ena is pursuing a master’s in public health from George Washington University and is passionate about increasing health outcomes by improving the built environment.
Keon Williams - Chief Financial Officer: Keon is currently a financial analyst for Wells Fargo. While studying finance he took a class in Labor & Environmental Economics which led to his devotion to understanding the financial factors involved with resource production.
Kristin Hanczor - Sustainability Strategist: Kristin is also a graduate from Seattle University and provides helps Play Fresh honor its commitment to operating in a way that reduces our environmental impact on the planet.
Will Prystowsky- Marketing Strategist: Will was a majored in sport management and supports Play Fresh with event planning and recruiting youth members.
At Play Fresh, we strive to use sports as a catalyst to empower young community leaders and promote environmental awareness."Derek Battle