Rich Bishop will hold seminars for local area teens about anti-bullying. For information e-mail

Bullying is no longer considered “just the mean kid” on the playground. Recent statistics reveal that bullying is a crime that is not going away anytime soon. There are more than 160,000 children that miss school every day out of fear of being bullied.

The internationally known John Maxwell Team is offering free leadership training for youth organizations to address bullying and character development to teens and parents throughout Hillsborough County.
Partnering with local schools and youth organizations, certified John Maxwell Team speakers teach participants on four key topics including: bullying, learning to fail forward to success, developing a positive self-image and developing strong personal character.

 “Students will learn how to stand-up and be counted, help others who are being bullied and be strong,” said Rich Bishop, one of the evening’s speakers and president of Bishop Coaching in Hillsborough County. 
Unfortunately, bullying has evolved from the school-yard to cyberspace and can encompass every age group. John Maxwell’s seminars teach three ways to deal with bullying in a positive, affirming way: Stand Up – Be confident in your own value, Lift Up – Use your influence to help others and Pick Up Help others who are being bullied by picking them up.

According to Bishop, who has been teaching with the John Maxwell team since August, “We are also going to go over character traits for success for teens.”

Bishop, a Ruskin resident, attended a John Maxwell seminar and was so moved by the experience, he decided to join the team. “I realized that this would be an opportunity to merge my passion for teaching with helping others,” said Bishop.

The seminar is aimed for teens ages 14-18. For information contact or

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Kelly Wise Valdes
Kelly Wise Valdes has been writing for the Osprey Observer since 2008. She graduated in 1989 from Florida Southern College with a B.S. in Communications and enjoys writing and traveling. She currently resides in northern Hillsborough County with her husband, David. When not traveling and writing, Kelly and her husband enjoy spending time with their five grown children (as well as their grandchildren) that still keep them very busy.