Columbus, Ga (WRBL) – Malcolm Mitchell’s career is defined by a dedicated passion for reading, and sharing it with kids of all ages. This week he stopped by the Brookstone School to read a back he wrote called “The Magician’s Hat.” Mitchell is also known for his incredible football career. He was a star wide receiver for the Georgia Bulldogs, and helped the New England Patriots win Super Bowl LI. These days he’s locked in on his mission to promote the importance of reading.
“I’ve seen the world from many different perspectives. I’ve seen it as a kid who struggled financially growing up in a low income environment and I’ve seen it from the opposite side of being an NFL athlete with plenty of opportunities. The single most important a human being can do to empower their life is reading proficiently,” said Mitchell.
The former Dawg’s love and passion for reading is a world away from where he started. 8 years ago, CBS News Reporter Steve Hartman profiled Malcolm while he attended UGA. He struggled to read even in college. That changed when he joined a book club of older women. He looked like a fish out of water, he stuck with it and remained determined to become a better reader. That work led to a new perspective about books.
“That I could pick up a book on any topic. Learn that information and apply it to accomplish any goal that I set in mind. To me there’s nothing more magical than that,” said Mitchell.
That was the inspiration behind his children’s book “The Magician’s Hat.” One person who was so proud to see Malcolm’s progress was someone who saw him way before he joined that book club. Malcolm’s former high school head football coach & current Brookstone head football coach Rance Gillespie.
“As a coach they say the greatest thing about the profession is the ability to influence kids in your program. Every once in a while one of them influences you. And certainly Malcolm has done that for me,” said Gillespie.
Malcom isn’t done writing his own story, but he took some time to look at how this current chapter of his life is different from the ones before.
“I think Malcolm Mitchell the football player didn’t fully understand life. He was wrapped up into what society was telling him. I think Malcolm as the author, or the person who’s been able to step away from football understands things outside of superficial possessions,” said Mitchell.
Malcolm says he’s still in contact with some of the women in the book club he joined in Athens. In fact some of them are now board members of his foundation. To buy a copy of “The Magician’s Hat” you can head to Malcolm’s website here