Volunteer Alumni Story – John Hall

Posted in: Alumni Stories

John Hall was working in the television industry in the 1970s when an intriguing opportunity presented itself. He would have the opportunity to mentor Junior Achievement students in creating their own television show. Excited by the chance to mold young minds, John accepted the opportunity not knowing the tremendous impact it would have on the futures of the students and his own life.

John worked in Cincinnati as a producer and director of television shows for WKRC TV. His company sponsored the JA Company Program and needed advisors to work with students and mentor them in the ways of the industry.

John volunteered to oversee a group of students once a week as they learned how to create and run a television show. The students were to create 13 30-minute shows and each would have a role – director, producer, interviewer, etc. The result was a TV company called “The Tall 12 TV Company” with their television show titled “Just the Beginning”.

John was thrilled to assist the students and taught them about selling commercial spots, pricing, managing money, and having self-confidence. “When some of them started,” he recalled, “they didn’t know anything about anything. And then 10 weeks in, you could see confidence and their knowledge gain.”

The students were wildly successful in their endeavor and generated enough revenue to pay for a trip to New York City to conduct live interviews on their show with celebrities such as Big Bird and the Rockettes!

At the end of the program, his passionate group of students gained national attention as JA Company of the Year, an accolade he felt was well-deserved. “JA did so much for their ability to lead other people,” John noted.

He went on to mentor groups of students for three years, making a lasting impact on each. But to this day, he still keeps in contact with that first group of students who have grown into confident, empowered adults, some of which are business owners themselves.

“I have always appreciated the JA program and all that it stands for.” John attended a JA event in 2018 and the fond memories of his time as a JA advisor came flooding back. We are glad that we were able to make lasting memories for John and a lasting impact for his students.