A message from HOBY Ohio South

The Hugh O’Brian Youth Leadership mission is to inspire and prepare young people for a life dedicated to leadership, service, and innovation. It is our duty to speak up when we see injustice in the world. Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor, George Floyd, and Desmond Franklin’s lives matter, and so do the countless other Black Americans killed through extrajudicial state and vigilante violence. HOBY Ohio South unequivocally condemns all acts of racism, hatred, violence, and injustice. 

Our program is committed to including various perspectives and creating space for reflection; we will continue to challenge our staff and ambassadors through honest conversations about privilege and inequality. We are not perfect, but we strive to better ourselves and our organization. We ask that, as members of HOBY Ohio South, you:

  • Educate yourself about systemic racism, white privilege, and implicit bias.
  • Spend time reflecting on your own biases and your ability to make change in the world.
  • Have constructive conversations with your friends and family.
  • Speak up and hold us at HOBY Ohio South accountable to our commitments. 

We encourage our ambassadors, alumni and staff to explore all the ways you can work to end racial injustice; there are some excellent resources to be found here: https://blacklivesmatters.carrd.co.

BLACK LIVES MATTER! We see you. We hear you. We mourn with you. We stand with you and we will not be silent! 

HOBY Ohio South is Going Virtual

HOBY Family,

We hope you are doing well. 

As we communicated in our last correspondence, we had set a deadline for June 1st to make a final determination regarding the direction of our 2020 seminar going forward. Unfortunately, we have not received guidance from the State of Ohio that leads us to believe we will be allowed to hold an in-person seminar for HOBY Ohio South this summer. Additionally, the guidelines from the CDC, geared towards summer day camps, are such that we do not believe we would be able to hold an in-person session safely, even if we were given the go ahead by the state. While we are disappointed that we will not be able to give everyone our customary HOBY Hugs, we are very excited to bring our leadership seminar to life in new ways. 

We have made the decision to provide our students with a Virtual HOBY for 2020 and our final seminar dates will be Saturday, July 18th and Sunday, July 19th. Our times for those days are still being determined you but you should plan for two full days of fun and engaging content – roughly seven hours per day with breaks built in. 

We will continue to reach out in the coming weeks to share updates on platforms and content and what you can expect from Virtual HOBY this year. If you have any questions or concerns in the meantime, please reach out to our HOBY Ohio South team directly (rather than our parent organization who also may be communicating with you,) as we will be able to assist you most readily. 

Thank you for your continued support for our seminar. 

(Virtual) HOBY Hugs!

Important Seminar Update

HOBY Family,

We hope this correspondence finds you doing well in these uncertain times. Over the past several weeks, the volunteers here at HOBY Ohio South and the staff at HOBY International have been working tirelessly to ensure that we are making the most responsible choices possible to maximize HOBY’s impact on the lives of tomorrow’s leaders while first and foremost protecting the safety of our ambassadors, our volunteers, and their families.

To that end, the 2020 HOBY Ohio South Leadership Seminar will no longer take place June 11–14 as previously scheduled.

At the present time, we are working instead toward an in-person seminar at Marietta College July 16–19, 2020. Our hope is that we will soon receive guidance from the State of Ohio that will help ensure that we at HOBY Ohio South and our partners at Marietta College will be able to provide a positive leadership experience—and avoid the disappointment of one more thing canceled—while keeping your student and our volunteers safe and healthy.  

However, given the continued unpredictability around the pandemic, we are planning down two tracks. Should we not feel confident that we can safely meet in person for our mid-July dates, we will transition to a two-day Virtual HOBY that will be held July 18–19. The virtual seminar would still be facilitated by the dedicated volunteers here at HOBY Ohio South with engaging keynotes, fun activities, and small-group breakout discussions. We look forward to sharing more information about the virtual curriculum should we go that route.

A final decision regarding whether we will be holding our seminar in-person July 16–19 or virtually July 18–19 will be communicated via email and at HOBYOhioSouth.org no later than June 1.

Additionally, you can find a list of FAQs regarding COVID-19 at HOBYOhioSouth.org/covid which we will continually update as the details develop.

We understand these are trying times and the situation is ever evolving. As we continue to gather information and follow the guidance from Governor DeWine and Dr. Acton, we are committed to communicating with you, quickly and transparently, any and all changes that affect the future of our seminar. 

You will receive updates about this evolving situation from HOBY International as well as directly from us. We encourage you to reach out to our team here at HOBY Ohio South with any questions or concerns you may have. Additionally, if your student can’t make the rescheduled dates, whether in-person or virtual, please let us know; we will work with you to find the best solution for your family.

Our very best wishes for you and your loved ones,

Anne Schneider & Leslie Huber
2020 Leadership Seminar Chairs
[email protected]

Katie Hanson
2020 Director of Recruitment
[email protected]

Jacob Manser
Board President
[email protected]

Target Recognized as Outstanding Donor for Ohio Youth Leadership Program

Company’s West Jefferson distribution center has contributed over $10,000


COLUMBUS, Ohio – Hugh O’Brian Youth Leadership (HOBY) Ohio South has selected Target as this year’s recipient of its Benefactor Award, which was established to recognize significant supporters of its programs.

The HOBY Ohio South Youth Leadership Seminar is a four-day seminar where nearly 200 sophomores from central and southeast Ohio gather to learn leadership and life skills through keynote presenters, guided activities, and interactive events with their peers from other school districts.

“This weekend really has a lasting impact on these kids for the rest of their lives,” said Rachel Foltz-Nash, Volunteer Co-Chair for HOBY Ohio South. Co-Chair Jacob Manser added, “the kinds of programs that they get to experience wouldn’t be possible without the great support of our private donors and philanthropic partners like Target.”

The Target T-2804 Distribution Center in West Jefferson, Ohio has gifted more than $10,300 over the past two years through the Target Community Engagement Funds Grant program. This makes them one of the largest single donors in HOBY Ohio South’s 40-year history.

The Benefactor Award will be presented to Target at the HOBY Ohio South Youth Leadership Seminar closing ceremonies on Sunday, June 9 at Marietta College in Marietta, Ohio.

About HOBY

For 60 years, Hugh O’Brian Youth Leadership (HOBY) has helped to cultivate leaders by inspiring a global community of youth and volunteers to a life dedicated to leadership, service, and innovation. HOBY programs annually provide more than 10,000 local and international high school students the opportunity to participate in unique leadership training, service learning and motivation-building experiences. HOBY also provides adults the opportunity to make a significant impact on the lives of youth by volunteering, and today more than 4,000 volunteers annually and over 500,000 alumni proudly make up the HOBY family. For further information on HOBY, visit www.hoby.org. “Like” Hugh O’Brian Youth Leadership on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/HOBY and follow the organization on Twitter via @HOBY.

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Media Contact
Ryan Beaman
Volunteer Director of Media and Public Relations
(614) 517-9545
[email protected]