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Hanging modestly across the gymnasium wall at Roger’s Park—a historical cornerstone of the community— is the Inglewood Hall of Fame with a list of the city’s local legends. Living up to the city’s legacy and nickname as the “City of Champions,” Anthony Freeman, a national Bicycle Motocross (BMX) champion, sits amongst talents such as WNBA player Lisa Leslie, supermodel Tyra Banks, music executive Suge Knight, NBA player Paul Pierce, and Los Angeles Lakers coach Byron Scott. One of the first things someone might learn about Freeman is his audacious pride for his city and devotion to his community. Born and raised during an important transitional phase for the newly racially integrated Inglewood, Anthony Freeman was amongst a passionate and confident cohort of youth who were eager to fulfill their potential as athletes, artists, and business persons. From a very young age, the bike was his amusement, his transportation, his muse, and eventually his vehicle of opportunity for further developing his skills and expanding his reach.
From 1986-1987, Freeman rode on the KHS National BMX team, competing throughout the U.S. In 1993, TEAM AXO (equipment and apparel), BEAR BICYCLES, and co-sponsors SHIMANO COMPONENTS and VANS SHOES put together a deal that would allow Freeman to focus on competitions. That same year, he won the National #1 Amateur Title in BMX and led the team to an overall National #1 Bike Shop Team title. The following year, he obtained the ABA World Cup. Cycling provided Freeman a career in the television commercial and print (multi-media) advertising industries. At age thirteen, he began a career in commercial acting and modeling. He maintained his success in the industry for two decades, booking several notable jobs as principal talent including an international, and now classic, McDonald’s commercial with mountain bike World Champion Brian Lopes. In 1998, he featured in a billboard for NIKE displayed nationally. In 2006 he filmed his forty fifth commercial as principal talent for AOL, acting the role of a Tour de France rider.
Freeman also spent time working behind the scenes, learning the business. For four years he worked as a subagent in a SAG franchised talent agency, producing a fifty percent increase in profits. He spent three years assisting casting directors and coordinating auditions for print and T.V. commercials. Additionally, he spent four years as an ambassador promoting Bear Bicycles while traveling throughout the U.S., including Canada and Holland. After retiring from BMX a decision was made to focus more on family and career. In 1999, Freeman founded Talented Enterprises, a talent development company specializing in the representation of extreme sports athletes. The company represented several talented cyclists including: Brian Lopes (GT BICYCLES), Tara Llanes (TEAM GIANT female mountain bike champion), Jamie Staff (Great Britain Olympic velodrome competitor) and Brian Smith (Mongoose mountain bike champion).
In his twenty-two years of fitness training and competing, Hall of Fame Bicyclist Anthony Freeman recognized the differences in body development, athletic performance, school performance, and esteem between the various communities he was in. He deduced that a disparity in resources was the underlying cause of these advantages and disadvantages. Some communities generally demonstrated a knowledge of quality nutrition, had access to top of the line technology & equipment, received specialized training, and came from two-parent homes. Other communities seemed to have very little awareness of nutrition, be reliant on low-performing public school systems, come from single-parent homes, and have access to outdated recreational facilities and equipment. Experiencing his parents’ active involvement with youth sports and coaching, Freeman believed that Parks & Recreations would be an opportune place to implement the resources that hadn’t been available to his community. Over the past few years, Freeman has dedicated himself full-time to his passion for fitness, health, and community building. He began coaching youth sports teams and teaching aerobics classes to adults. This led him to personal training and teaching classes in small private gyms. Still unable to fully realize his vision, Freeman aspired to broaden the scope of his services. He sought out someone whose mastery and passion is in academics and who demonstrated an interest in health and fitness.
A few years ago, Eden began training with Anthony as she set out to improve her knowledge of fitness and pursue her growing passion for health & wellness. Eden was primarily educated in academically high-ranked public schools and elite private schools that were outside of her community. Similar to Coach Freeman, Jeffries recognized the disparity in resources. For example, classrooms had smaller student to teacher ratios; there was significant parent involvement on campus; funding and donations from families allowed for the schools to update facilities, provide advanced technology and higher quality equipment; teachers expressed enthusiasm, care, and support to the students; many students received specialized tutoring and training outside of the school; parents promoted good nutrition and physical activities; parents also seemed to provide a lot of positive reinforcement and emotional support. Jeffries wanted to bridge the resource gap by bringing her experience and knowledge. The two decided to integrate their skills and resources to make a more impactful contribution to their community.