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The Power of One: Christopher R. Mann ’00

Hometown: Holliston, Mass.

Family: Wife, Rebecca (Payton) Mann '01; son, Alex (14 months old); and dog, Sadie (short for 'Sader)

What he did at Holy Cross: "I was on the track & field team, worked on the first summer orientation program and served as class president, among other activities. Each gave me an opportunity to make long-term friendships, and managing the busy schedule gave me a good head start for the workplace."

The impact Holy Cross had: "I met my wife at at Holy Cross, so I'd say that it affected me in about the biggest way possible! My experiences at Holy Cross also forced me out of my comfort zone and made me much more comfortable in my own skin. That has been critical as I have pursued more public- and people-oriented jobs in fundraising, marketing and communications."

The working life: "I work for Reebok as its director of social purpose. My team and I encourage, manage and share all of the positive ways in which Reebok is using its expertise, people and resources to have a positive impact on society. An example is BOKS (Build Our Kids Success), an initiative of the Reebok Foundation that gets elementary school children active and moving before school, priming their brains for learning throughout the day."

Memorable Holy Cross moments: "Two spring break trips to Tallahassee, Fla., building houses for Habitat for Humanity are among my favorites. Getting to know each other during the 24-hour drives, days on the worksite and nights having fun while helping to build a home for a family in need was amazing."

Why he stays connected to Holy Cross: "I am consistently impressed by how connected alumni are to the College and how much they look out for and help fellow graduates. John Hayes '91 connected me with Cynthia O'Brien '93, leading to my first interview at The Jimmy Fund and starting me on my career path, and I've tried to do the same for others as a result."

Why he believes in Holy Cross: "The liberal arts education I received at Holy Cross enables me to approach issues holistically and make a clear, persuasive case for my point of view. The concept of being 'men and women for others' also resonated and helped send me on my career path. I love seeing fellow Crusaders making a difference in their chosen profession and being a part of that tradition."

Why he gives to Holy Cross: "It would be hard to overstate the impact Holy Cross had on me. Considering the quality of the education and the type of students the College helps produce, I feel very good about my investment and the ability to give others an opportunity similar to the one that I had."   ■