Hunter McWilliams - Colorado Interview by Olivia Bush Nomination by Kristen McWilliams Photography by CKE Photography Issue 38 of Inspiring Teens Magazine
The Nomination: Hunter is a natural born leader on and off the baseball field. He exemplifies strength and integrity in all he does. As a young teen he started “Band of Brothers,” a Bible study fellowship and spiritual growth program for boys and their fathers...building strong relationships, accountability, and character. This program continues to impact young men today.
Photography by CKE Photography
When did you start playing baseball and what is your favorite memory on the field? My parents said my first word was “ball”! (: I started playing baseball at age 7. My favorite memory on the field is throwing my first "No Hitter" as a pitcher in 2013.
How do you lead on and off the baseball field? What are some of your leadership roles? On the field I try to lead by example; keep it positive in all situations. Build up your teammates no matter what. Be respectful to your coaches, the other coaches, your teammates, and your competitors. Use edifying language and behave with character and integrity. Be confident, but not arrogant. I share my story and my faith whenever I can encourage others. I am also leading by serving as a personal coach for several young baseball players in my community. Off the field: Along with starting Band of Brothers, I am involved in a weekly accountability group with some amazing young men/friends and often serve in a leadership role for the youth at my church, The Road at Chapel Hills.
How did you get the job as a baseball skills coach and what do you do as one? Like most, our community is filled with little league, YMCA youth and Tri lakes little league teams. Through friendships and word of mouth, my name was passed along to other parents and coaches. I was asked to come and perform a couple clinics for these teams. As a result, many of the parents hired me to be a private coach for their kids. I have had amazing coaches along the way who have taught me the very best in technique…big shout outs to Aaron Rhoades, Randall Dawson, Trevor Stewart, Eric Mason, Steve Smith and Jason Hursh. Following the lead of these talented men, I instruct kids on pitching, batting and fielding.
Photography by CKE Photography
What do you love about forming relationships with and getting to work with other kids? I enjoy building these kids up and helping them believe in themselves. It wasn’t that long ago that I was in their shoes. I know about competition, pressure, and the head games. I love teaching them not only the skills of the game, but how to be a leader on and off the field. It's important to be a team player and a team builder. Keep the dugout positive no matter what the situation is. Perform with character and skill, not arrogance. Watch your conduct, be respectful to the umpires, coaches, and other players. This is where character and integrity play a big role. If I can help mold that…what a win!
How did you get the idea to start Band of Brothers? Tell me more about it! The idea started in middle school. I knew that my friends and classmates needed community, accountability, and support in their daily walk with Christ. I’ve been blessed to grow up in a Christ centered home, where I have learned the value of all of these things. I came to my Father for help in organization. Together we decided to make it a Father/Son group knowing how important that relationship is. We met weekly in our home to pray together, learn scripture, and discuss the daily challenges that we were all facing. In one form or another this group continues to meet at my old campus. I also brought it to the next middle/high school, where they also continue in the tradition. As of now, my senior class and generation is facing many challenges…leading to desperation, isolation, despair and hopelessness. We just mourned the loss of a fellow classmate who took his own life. Along with my family, I am spearheading gatherings for faith, fellowship, and prayer in our home to meet the needs of my peers. The last meeting was incredible! My Grandfather, (a Pastor) spoke to our class, we shared and prayed together, and three of my classmates came to a saving knowledge of Christ. We will be hosting another gathering in about 2-3 weeks.
What is the hardest thing you’ve ever accomplished, and how did you do it? Honestly, the most difficult things I have accomplished/endured thus far are emotional in nature. I almost lost my younger brother to a serious heart condition, lost my little sister to a stillbirth at a young age and almost lost my Grandmother to H1N1 just over 10 years ago. It was my faith in Christ and the strength of my family that enabled all of us to weather these storms with hope. Through pain, suffering, loss, and miracles…God is good…all of the time! My Nana is a true miracle…given 0% chance of survival!
Photography by CKE Photography
What advice would you give to someone who wants to be where you are today? Work hard, put in the hours! Stay close to the Lord. Follow the example of those who are doing it best! Let your actions speak louder than your words! Always have accountability and fellowship, and never stop growing!
Where do you see yourself in 5 years/what are your plans for the future? I hope that I have had the opportunity to attain a degree in business management and play ball at a D1/D2 level University. My dream would be to make it all the way to the MLB, God willing!
What is your favorite activity or pastime that wasn’t in your nomination? I enjoy golf, hunting, love cars and spending time with friends and family.
Do you have a hidden talent? What is it? Mom is answering this one (: I can rock a dance floor and lead the crowd. The DJ at the last wedding I attended offered me a job!
If you could publicly present any topic to a group of your peers, what would it be and why? Leadership/Identity…knowing who YOU are and how God made you uniquely with a purpose. Stop comparing, use your God given skills and lead! In a world where so many get their validation through looks, fame, social media, etc…find your validation in Christ and your meaning in doing what He designed you to do!
Things on your bucket list Serve God Find the love of my life Own my dream car...2017 Camaro 2SS 1LE
Who do you find inspiring? First and foremost Christ! I also look up to the spiritual leadership and character of my father Mark. He leads by example. He works long hours, and still manages to spend time and invest in each one of his kids. I’m not blown away by fame, but I love seeing how others use it to help, encourage, and serve others ie: Tim Tebow, Sadie Robertson. Hunter will be featured in issue 38 of Inspiring Teens Magazine!