Welcome 2018-10-19T15:06:20+00:00

A Positive Alternative Outlet for Milwaukee Youth!

In 1980, at the young age of 19, Victor Barnett saw that the youth of Milwaukee were being pulled into the street life of gangs, crime, and violence. He used basketball as the tool to engage, mentor and guide youth towards an alternative path that would ensure their future success. From this vision and action, Running Rebels Community Organization was born.

WATCH US ON YOUTUBE

Running Rebels Timeline

  • 1980

    1980

    Victor Barnett saw Milwaukee gang leaders recruiting youth from the neighborhood and became concerned. In response, he utilized the sport of basketball to mentor youth in the community to keep them away from gangs, violence, and other negative influences.

  • 1980-1995

    Early Years

    For 15 years, Victor was a mentor and coach to hundreds of youth, funding his efforts by selling t-shirts out of his car. He made sure the youth were successful not only on the court, but at home, school, and in the community.

  • 1996

    Non-Profit Status

    In 1996, RRCO became a 501(c)(3) non-profit. This allowed RRCO to scale its mentoring work and interface with the child welfare system.

  • 1998

    MKE County Partnership

    In 1998, Milwaukee county engaged RRCO to provide service to youth involved in the Juvenile Justice System. These partnership programs emphasize mentorship, employment, accountability, and positive decision-making.

  • 1999

    Permanent Home

    In 1999, RRCO moved into its W. Fond du Lac location; purchasing the Lindsey Heights building in 2005. This location allowed RRCO to fill a critical gap in quality after-school programs in the area.

  • 2016

    2nd Location

    RRCO’s new location in the Harambee Neighborhood allows us to serve more youth and expand programming.

Running Rebels Our E.P.I.C. Mission

The Running Rebels Community Organization Engages the community, youth, and their families, Prevents involvement in gangs, drugs, violence, and the juvenile justice system, Intervenes and guides youth by assisting them with making positive choices, and Coaches youth through their transition into adulthood. We accomplish this through building relationships with youth and providing the resources and skills necessary for them to become thriving, connected, and contributing adult members of our community.

Running Rebels Goals

Our philosophy is to nurture the development of youths’ human potential and reduce violence, drug usage, and gang activity by:

  • Create safe after-school and summer environments for Milwaukee’s youth
  • Prepare youth for future careers and businesses
  • Improve academic performance through tutoring and mentorship
  • Avoid negative youth police contact and involvement in the corrections system
  • Provide youth with a sense of belonging and unity within their community

Running Rebels Philosophy

Our philosophy is to nurture the development of youths’ human potential and reduce violence, drug usage, and gang activity by:

• Keeping young people involved in beneficial, safe, and fun recreational and employment activities
• Encouraging each youth’s hopes and dreams while supporting youth to achieve them
• Underscoring successful academic achievement as essential for responsible adult citizenship
• Employing supportive, caring adults who inspire trust and model the values, skills, and morals that we want at-risk youth to develop

Running Rebels Staff

Victor Barnett
Executive Director & Founder

victor.barnett@runningrebels.org

Dawn Barnett
Co-Executive Director
dawn.barnett@runningrebels.org

Rolunda Dixon
Senior Director of Operations

rolunda.dixon@runningrebels.org

John Rakowski
VFZ Program Director/Development
john.rakowski@runningrebels.org

Stacey Lindsay
Director of Targeted Monitoring Programs

stacey.lindsay@runningrebels.org

Donta Holmes
Director of Mentoring & Athletics

donta.holmes@runningrebels.org

Cozette McLemore
Event Coordinator / Mentoring Assistant
cozette.mclemore@runningrebels.org

Running Rebels Annual Reports

Take a look at our annual reports.

2017 Annual Report
2016 Annual Report

Running Rebels Board of Directors

JILL M. BOYLE
BOARD CHAIR

DELBERT WILLIAMS
VICE CHAIR

VICTOR BARNETT
EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR

DAWN BARNETT
CO-EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR

GWENDOLYN HORTON
SECRETARY

CLIFTON PHELPS

CAROLYN GARSKI

ERIN MILES

BRANDI PATTERSON

FRED TABAK

MICHAEL COYNE

JESSE LEE BROWN

Donate to a positive outlet for Milwaukee youth

MAKE A DIFFERENCE!