Will Shields grew up in the humble hometown of Lawton, Oklahoma. He loved playing sports at Lawton High School and found himself drawn to football. Will spoke on the coaches and teammates who impacted his life as a young man.

During his high school football career, his team attended a camp led by a few alumni from his high school who had been drafted into the NFL. Will found in his team the ability to find bits and pieces of things that are wholesome, then worked to build it together.

This football camp allowed him to show his skills and helped him learn that there is a bigger world beyond his hometown community. Will's eyes were opened with the opportunity he had to play college football-- an opportunity he never thought he had. He had always held onto a dream or hope for his future.

Will was recruited to play as a defensive linebacker for the Nebraska Cornhuskers. He was coached by Tom Osborn who taught him a valuable life lesson. Coach Osborn taught that it did not matter what position one individual played as everyone is equally important. Even if someone is receiving the accolades from a certain play or game, without the work and dedication of everyone else, the one does not matter.

After playing for the Huskers, Will was recruited to play for the Kansas City Chiefs. This allowed him many opportunities to experience the world. He learned that in order to get, you must give first. Doing the best for yourself and others will help everything else to fall into place. However, in order to better understand what the community needs to grow, one must be willing to listen. With everything going on in the United States, we need to learn how to rise as one and fill the gap of

future aspirations.

"That's why we love the mantra for this year: one team, one vision, one goal; to make sure that you can rise as one and not a bunch of individuals trying to fight for whatever your little piece of the pie might be. Just realize that there is enough for everyone to build off of to make it stronger for the future." - Will Shields

Will expressed his insight of how each each business, each owner has something they can give in order to make the community better. As a community, we can build a cohesive unit as a way to overcome any challenges we face (i.e. floods, COVID-19, etc.)

Will wrapped up his inspiring story by asking the Kearney community the following questions:

"What can I do to make part of our community better?

What can I do to help my neighbor and friends?

What can I do to become one with others who are like me to help us all rise as one?

Because we can't do it by ourselves. We all need help. We all need to support each other."

"One team. One Vision. One Goal. Rise As One."

Thank you, Will Shields, we are extremely grateful for you vision and interest in helping business succeed.

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