EXCITING, PASSIONATE, REAL.
A native to Imperial, Nebraska, Mike has been speaking professionally for the last 5 years and has been a youth outreach worker for over 10 years. He is the founder and executive director of a 501c3 non-profit in THE BAY and its offshoot, Skate For Change (SFC), both of which have begun to receive national acclaim and support from the likes of Red Bull and State Farm. This past summer, Mike also embarked on his second annual mission of skateboarding across the entire state of Nebraska to raise money for these causes.
Today, Mike spends his days expanding the scope of these ventures. Currently, he is finishing up construction on a 28,000 square-foot facility in Lincoln that will serve as the headquarters for THE BAY and SFC, containing an indoor skatepark, a coffee shop, an art gallery, and a concert venue for local youth to utilize until as late as 2 A.M. on the weekends. Mike has also been traveling the region with his skateboard in tow to help spread SFC to cities like Omaha, Kansas City, Chicago, Cleveland, and the rest of the country. His aim is to one day spread this concept to skateboarders across the world.
Mike is an expert at communicating with kids and encouraging them to make good decisions that lead them to follow their dreams. Mike will come to your school and speak truth and encouragement to your students – he has already made a difference for thousands of students, parents, and administrators across the country!
Mike Smith has been a full-time advocate and resource for homeless and runaway youth for the last two years. He meets them under bridges, in abandoned buildings and while they are train hopping. He works hard to help them get into a stable, safe, and consistent living situation.
Mike understands making poor decisions can get you into a tough spot. He knows about hard circumstances that sometimes influence bad choices. Mike uses these lessons to inspire young people to believe in themselves, to dream bigger and run hard to reach them.
The founder of Bay 198, one of the country’s only nonprofit skateparks, Mike doesn’t just talk about changing lives – he lives it. To raise awareness for troubled youth and funds to help provide them a safe productive outlet, he slept under a bridge for 27 straight nights (many frigid) last winter, and skated more than 430 miles across the state in June 2011.
He is a former All-American college basketball player and avid surfer, snowboarder and skateboarder with more than a decade of experience working with young people. Mike is an expert at relating to young people and communication a message of inspiration and hope that they won’t forget. Students from all walks of life will easily relate to Mike’s message and will be inspired to become the change in their community.