While making a name for himself on the football field, TJ Finley has never forgotten his higher calling, serving those around him to make a difference in this world . The 2020 LSU quarterback commit is dedicated to making his hometown of Ponchatoula, Louisiana a better place for all who live there. Let's take a look into another side of TJ that transcends the football field.
“The police department was a key place I wanted to assist with, because I feel like I can be the bridge that connects teenagers and the police,” said TJ. “My goal is to bridge the gap between police and teenagers by showing both sides that there is good in everyone. With me helping teenagers, they see a real-life example on how the communications between police and teenagers can be done.”
Another organization very important to TJ’s heart is, DCS Family Health Clinic. Every year, DCS Family Health Clinic and other community sponsors hosts, Wheels of Christmas. This event blesses over 100 children from single parents households with brand new bikes for Christmas. “DCS is owned and operated by both of my parents, and I am looking forward to celebrating our third annual bike giveaway this year. I love seeing the smiles on the kids faces!”
“I also volunteer with, Helping Hands Ministry, a community that distributes food to those in need. My basketball team and I were granted the opportunity to help provide food for well over one hundred families in the city of Ponchatoula that were in need of food during Thanksgiving.”
Finley knows to whom much is given, much is expected, and he wants to use the gifts he has been given to their fullest potential. “I’ve realized that God has given me a talent like no other in being able to play the quarterback position. Therefore, I want to use that ability to create a platform that reaches others and gives them hope to reach their goals in life. I want to help them understand how each individual has a different gift from God. Being only 17, the age range I am reaching is 12-19 year olds, and I believe that they will understand and relate more to things coming from a person their age better than if an adult was telling them and teaching them.”
TJ’s grandmother, the late Rebecca Finley, was a Pastor in Monroe, Louisiana. TJ’s father, David Finley recalls how she served the people with an amazing heart. “I see that same heart in TJ,” said David. “If she was alive today she would be so proud to see TJ as a young teenager doing what he is for people in need.”