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demically,” he said. “But I made it through high school and moved to UGA to play football for the Bulldogs.”

It didn’t take long for Malcolm to realize he was in trouble in the classroom.

“I was a weak reader, and it was just a matter of time before it affected my grades,” he said. “I decided to approach reading like I approached football — by practicing. I practiced a lot, and I got better.” One day as he browsed the shelves of the Barnes & Noble in Athens, he asked another customer to recommend a good book to read. The stranger suggested a book she and others were reading in a book club. Malcolm’s face lit up.

He joined the woman’s book club, even though he was quite different from the other members. He was the only male. He was in college, and the women were in their forties, fifties, and sixties. And the women were white. Malcolm is African American.

“None of that mattered,” he told me. “We connected because of our passion for books and reading. It was a great experience for me and made me want to share that passion with others.” Malcolm began visiting schools and telling the kids about his own struggles with reading and his triumphs. As he approached graduation, he wrote a children’s book, The Magician’s Hat, the first in a three-book contract he signed with Scholastic Publishing. The following year, he started the Share the Magic Foundation to promote reading challenges, organize school events and provide books to kids to help them read their way to better futures.

“I’m more proud of what the Foundation has done for children than I am of my football career,” he told me. “This is my life’s work. When you give a child a book, you give them hope.”

Malcolm Mitchell has given hope to hundreds of thousands of children throughout the country. He’s another example of a good person.

I’m convinced there’s more good in the world than bad, more light than darkness, more positive than negative. We just have to look for “the good,” talk about it, and celebrate it as much as we celebrate the Braves winning the World Series last week. I’ll do my part and continue to write about the many “good people” I meet in our communities. Please do your part and focus on the good in the world, because it’s there. It’s there.

Marvin Garner displays a rocky horse.

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