Jamal Stroud, a nationally-recognized motivational speaker and community activist, will offer the keynote address at The Center for Family Justice’s annual Speaking of Men Breakfast on Nov. 4 at the Trumbull Marriott.
Stroud will highlight a morning program that is part of the nonprofit’s ongoing efforts to engage more men and boys in its efforts to end domestic and sexual violence in the six local communities it serves.
The 8:30 a.m. breakfast event will also include a special recognition of Milford resident Alan Masarek, a CFJ volunteer and co-chair of its Empower House campaign. Masarek recently finished a coast-to-coast bike ride from Portland, Ore. to Portland, Maine to support CFJ’s Empower House Project, its ambitious plans to open a new domestic violence safe house for abuse survivors sometime in 2022.
Speaking of Men is a project of CFJ’s White Ribbon Committee, a group of male community leaders who work with the nonprofit’s team to engage more men and boys in its mission to eradicate domestic and sexual violence near and far. The committee is chaired by Gary MacNamara, the former police chief in Fairfield, who now serves as Executive Vice President of Government Affairs and Public Safety at Sacred Heart University.
Stroud was selected as this year’s Speaking of Men keynote for the leadership he has demonstrated in providing mentorship to boys through his South Carolina-based nonprofit Big Homies, Lil Homies. The organization works to offer strong male mentors to boys who lack strong father figures in their lives. Stroud’s work and long-term commitment to these mentorship efforts was featured on and honored by The Ellen DeGeneres Show. In addition to his personal nonprofit, Stroud is also on the executive staff of Camp HOPE America, a network of camps across the United States which support children impacted by the trauma of abuse. CFJ operates the Elizabeth M. Pfriem Camp HOPE America-Bridgeport, which is an affiliate of this innovative and award-winning summer camp and year-long mentoring program.
“Speaking of Men is so important to advancing our work because it highlights the role men can and do play in preventing abuse,” said Debra A. Greenwood, President & CEO of The Center for Family Justice. “Since we believe the seeds of future abuse often begin with traumatic experiences during childhood, having someone as captivating as Jamal Stroud speak to the importance addressing these issues with male teenagers and younger boys is critically important.”
Greenwood also noted honoring Alan Masarek is a “wonderful way to show our Speaking of Men audience the way that men can be powerful examples and leaders in the efforts to put a stop to abuse.” Throughout his cross-country bike journey, which began in August and ended in October, Masarek highlighted the prevalence of domestic violence and the need for safe shelter for victims in many of the communities he visited. His efforts helped raise tens of thousands of dollars and awareness about CFJ’s efforts to expand its shelter capacity for victims. As a result, the new Empower House safe house will open its doors some time next year.
Tickets for the breakfast are $50 each. They can be purchased by visiting CenterforFamilyJustice.org or calling CFJ’s Development Team at 203-334-6154.