The same energy and enthusiasm Super Jacket brings to pep rallies and Friday night football games has been motivating members of Key Clubs across the north Texas.
Dillion Grisham, who will be continuing his role of Cleburne High School mascot in the 2019-20 school year, has been serving as a Key Club lieutenant governor following his election earlier this year.
He is now stepping into a new leadership role following his appointment to Convention Liaison for the Texas-Oklahoma District and will be responsible for organizing and planning the 2020 District Convention.
Grisham just wrapped up his second year as Key Club president at CHS. He began developing his leadership skills in the eighth grade at Smith Middle School, where he was president of Builder’s Club, the Kiwanis-sponsored middle school student organization.
“Dillion’s enthusiastic — he’s never met a stranger,” CHS Key Club Sponsor Melissa Greene said. “When he cares about something, he’s passionate and he runs with it. We have doubled our membership since he’s been president.”
More than 300 Key Clubs make up the Texas-Oklahoma District and under Grisham’s leadership, Cleburne has consistently ranked among the top 25 chapters, based on membership, community service hours, projects and related criteria.
At the 2019 district conference, Cleburne was named second overall among all Texas and Oklahoma chapters, and will be among the recognized delegations at the Key Club International Convention, taking place July 3-7 in Baltimore. The Cleburne chapter’s scrapbook also placed second at district, to advance to competition at the international level.
Grisham said he had big plans for the CHS chapter when he took on the presidency his freshman year.
“When I was still in the eighth grade, I was asked if I was interested in being Key Club president,” he said. “In my first year, we had 12 members. This year we were up to 55 and counting. As a board of officers in that first year, we sat down to determine what we needed to do to change things. The chapter hadn’t been active and we needed to re-establish the organization at CHS.”
Led by Super Jacket, the Cleburne established a presence for their organization on social media and adopted an ambitious plan for community service, matching projects adopted at the international level.
“We wanted to let our school see Key Club was here to serve kids,” Grisham said. “They came to our meetings, and they kept coming. We also try to do a lot of little things for CHS students. During Key Club Week we did activities involving the student body on the themes of kindness and motivation.
“I’m all about showing positivity. I was adopted by my wonderful grandmother, who I call my mom. Things have not always been easy for me, but my life is now leveling out. I hate to see kids struggling mentally, physically or emotionally. Just to see the kids I serve smile and say ‘thanks’ when I do or say something to lift them up makes me want to do more.”
Service to others has been a big part of Grisham’s plan of action for the CHS Key Club, as well as his work with fellow clubs as a district officer. He made personal visits to each of the chapters in Region 7 and offered his support to club officers to help them build membership.
In addition to growth in Cleburne’s chapter, members have upped their service initiatives. Students volunteered at the Ronald McDonald House located near Cook Children’s Medical Center and raised $1,000 for March of Dimes and UNICEF.
“I’ve been very excited about this new level of service we have going in our chapter,” Grisham said. “Our leadership team and members have bonded and we are serving. Service is the Key Club motto, and what we have achieved this year made us one of the top chapters in Region 7, which includes 20 clubs from Fort Worth to Weatherford, as well as the Texas-Oklahoma District. Receiving that recognition made us all proud and is a reflection of the commitment we made to build and improve our chapter, and the work we have put into it.”
Grisham believes his service as Super Jacket has been a contributor to what he has seen accomplished in Cleburne and in his job as a lieutenant governor.
“I feel what I have done relates to what I do as Super Jacket,” he said. “On Friday nights I am Super Jacket, exciting the crowd, and then I wake up on Saturdays as a lieutenant governor, ready to get on the road and get kids excited about Key Club.”
Grisham, who is also involved in AVID, Interact Club and will be adding National Junior Honor Society in 2019-20, is very proud to serve as the CHS mascot.
“I fell in love with Super Jacket and what he means to our school and community,” he said. “When I’m Super Jacket, the kids who come up to me are so excited and happy. It’s wonderful to watch their reactions. It warms my heart.
“I love to step outside the box and do different things and being Super Jacket lets me do that. The cheerleaders encouraged me to try out for mascot. I’m known for being excited and dramatic. It’s a lot of hard work being Super Jacket, but I wouldn’t trade it for anything.”
While Grisham is now outgoing president of the CHS Key Club following two years at the helm, his days as a worker bee for the chapter are far from over.
“I would like to see more Key Clubs in Johnson County,” he said. “We’re the only one, and I would like to change that. I’d also like to see the Texas and Oklahoma chapters work together more, as a group, to have bigger impact. I still want to help clubs build the foundation that we have.”
If anyone can get these things done, and more, it’s Super Jacket—and the young man within.
“When Dillion’s fired up, everyone is fired up,” Greene said. “When he has a plan, he gets everyone on board.”
The achievements of the CHS Key Club will be honored at the June 17 school board meeting, including the national qualifying scrapbook committee of Alex Falkingham, Grace Sitler, Taylar Bowersox and Lorena Fonseca.