"As coaches, we are teachers, and we teach much more than we ever will know. The young men we come in contact with are at an age where our words and actions help shape their lives. You never know when you are giving an education, and you never know when the lesson learned will be put to work.
I believe that leaders and managers need to lead the way, and often that means going beyond talk and into action. One of my favorite sayings is, "What you do speaks so loudly I cannot hear what you say." Actions matter most."
Saban grew up in Monongah, a coal mining town in West Virginia of about 1500 residents. His father, Nick Sr., had a service station and a little Dairy Queen restaurant. Nick Sr.served the youth in the seven surrounding coal mining towns in the county by volunteering to coach and create sports teams for youngsters who would otherwise not have had a chance to participate. He also provided them with transportation to and from practices and games.
Coach Saban said one of his Dad's favorite quotes was: "No man stands as tall as he who stoops to help a child."
In 1998, during their time at Michigan State University, Nick and Terry Saban established Nick's Kids Foundation, in honor of the late Nick Saban, Sr.
Nick's Kids Foundation has distributed over $9 million to hundreds of organizations and causes. In addition to many others, the foundation has completed projects including the career tech classrooms at the Tuscaloosa County Juvenile Detention Center, the Tuscaloosa Riverwalk Playground, renovating the STTEP Building of Brewer Porch Children's Center, building 17 Habitat for Humanity homes and the Alberta School of Performing Arts playground. Nick's Kids is also a major donor of the Tuscaloosa All-Inclusive Playground, the Saban Center, the YMCA of Tuscaloosa and provides funding for organizations distributing groceries in response to COVID-19.
Coach Saban's father set the right example.
What example do you set?