Mike Belmares II
Raleigh, North Carolina, United States
Hi, thanks for reading this. Want to know who I am?
Alrighty then, here we go- all the way from the 630 to the 919.
I grew up in the Chicago area. I have lived a little bit in a lot of the towns, but was raised mostly in Wheaton, IL a western suburb of Chicago. Go Falcons! From Wheaton I went to Deerfield, IL, a northshore burb of Chicago for college (FYI, Michael Jordan lived just a couple miles down from my college, so that's cool right?). I played colleged football for two years, but then gave that up to work full time with an organization that was having me do what I was wanted to do- Community Outreach. I worked with students and families in Libertyville, IL. I still love Da 'Ville. It's a fantastic place.
Went from North Shore Chicago "The 847," to Midland, MI "The 989" to be the area director for the YL area there. Did that for 4 years, then got hired by an Episcopal church to be their Youth an Local Outreach Director. Spent seven years of my life in a gray and cold forecast, but in that time my wife gave us 2 awesome kids, our son (JB) and daughter (Sophia).
In 2012 we decided that we still had goals and desires to pursue so somewhere in that process we were led to Raleigh "The 919." It was hard leaving a seven year routine and some of the best friends that took all of seven years to develop, but we haven't regretted one minute of our decision to be "all up in this place" called the South. I certainly don't miss the snow or the "hit you in the face like a 2x4" freezing wind.
I've worked as an Area Director, Youth Pastor, Office Coordinator, Trainer, Fundraiser, Recruiter, Marketing, Comm. Director, Coach, Teacher, I've been on several Boards, mentored Juvenile At-Risk Youth and last, but not least, full-time Husband and Father.
I love community organizations- both church affliatated and non-church affiliatated. Call it ministry, call it social justice, call it whatever you want, but however you look at it it's still about caring for people and building up communities. I've been working on a few projects myself (I always have some irons in the fire) that are all about community building and nonprofits that have been nothing short of exciting and exhausting.
Let's a have a drink or break some bread and talk about rebuilding and igniting life in the city. Shall we?
Peace be with you.