At one point in high school, I was overwhelmed by the generosity and privilege of growing up in Old Town. The people and opportunities had given me so much, and, from a place of gratitude, I couldn’t help but begin giving back.
Growing up in Old Town, Brian remembers getting in trouble for being late to class because he was having a heart-to-heart with a classmate in the hallway. What high school student does that?! No matter if he was serving as a youth elder at his church or accompanying his mom to volunteer events, it is in Brian’s DNA always put the community first.
As Brian went off to college, he looked for a school that reflected his community-first mindset. He ended up at a school of about 4,000 students in Pennsylvania where he joined the rowing team and dove head-first into every opportunity to serve his new community. At first, his rowing mates giving him a hard time for focusing too much on community service, and he had his academic friends annoyed with him for being too focused on rowing. People just didn’t get Brian’s heart to truly serve. In the end, Brian we the most decorated and respected leader of his class on graduation day.
As much as I loved the community I served in college, whenever I would make the drive from school to home, my heart would begin to race with excitement. Attuned to the joy of coming home, I thought to myself, maybe my hometown needs my passion here. What if the city that raised me actually needs me?
He didn’t know how right he was. Completely unsure of what exactly he wanted to do, Brian resolved to come back to Old Town. He jumped from opportunity to opportunity, and all of a sudden the Goodhart Group was creating a position for him. He learned the ins and outs of residential real estate, ultimately securing his license.
I would have never guessed real estate, but I get why I ended up here now. I get to wake up every morning to study the inventory and the area and help people find a home alongside the people I call home. I love that my job allows me to remain deeply connected to the community. It doesn’t feel like I am working, simply living.
Believe it or not, Brian found a job he might keep more than a year! He even shared that his hope is to be the ‘fake mayor’ when he’s older. You know, like the older gentleman that walks around town, stopping everyone to see how they are? He doesn’t want to be like a real mayor with an agenda; he wants to be the fake mayor with a purpose, genuinely befriending every person who calls Alexandria home.
It’s easy to think as a kid that you need to go to someplace like LA or NY to really make an impact. However, I am so glad I was patient. My hope for the future of young adults in Alexandria is to take their time to really consider how deep and wide they want to impact the world, which may mean pouring back into the community that made you who you are. Staying loyal to the community comes full-circle.
Brian noticed that when high school students walk into South Block, their faces light up, and there is an energy that compels them to be part of this space. With ALX Community, the teens and young adults of Alexandria have an inspiring and supportive place to begin following their dreams and changing the world right here in Old Town.
It’s impossible to have a bad day if you work at ALX because it isn’t just a community workplace, but a workspace that cares about the community. I feel like I can represent ALX everywhere I go in the community, whether through volunteering or chamber events. ALX is not for profit; it is for people. Specifically, our people. People who call Alexandria home, regardless of if you’ve called it home for a week or for decades. People really care about you here.