WHERE IT ALL STARTED.
The vision began with one woman, Betty Taufoou. Betty was a single mother whose unconditional love, passion, hard work, and dedication to T [LEMO Founder] and his sister, Trina, became the inspiration for the LEMO Foundation. Growing up, they faced many hardships. Still, Betty found a way to provide her kids with opportunities to be successful, and her commitment to strong values, high-quality education, and creating a better life for her children became the founding principles of the LEMO Foundation.
Inspired by Betty’s commitment to family, T & his wife, Ali, founded The LEMO Foundation to honor her legacy. On September 11, 2008, Ali and T opened their modest two-bedroom apartment to create opportunities for under-served student-athletes to pursue their dreams of a better life. Ali & T turned their dining room into an academic resource center with two desktop computers, converted their family room into a bedroom helping young student-athletes that needed a warm place to sleep, and utilized the hills surrounding their apartment and local tracks as their workout facility. 100% committed, mind, body, and soul!
LEMO is short for Liahona Motu, meaning Rock & Compass. The rock is a symbol of security and confidence, and the compass is a guiding light for student athletes in their pursuit of self discovery. Founded on the principles of photosynthesis and guided by the philosophy of giving back, The LEMO Foundation is ultimately a cycle that energizes and fuels the hearts and minds of student athletes. Their lives alone are part of our ecosystem, our home, our story. It is the basis of why we do what we do. We are the rock and compass, firm in our promise to pay it forward and unwavering in our desire to influence the lives of student-athletes.
IT'S BIGGER THAN US.
Leadership, Ecosystem, Motivation and Ownership.
The students that LEMO touches learn to appreciate teamwork and collaboration, while also striving to be leaders that set good examples for others to follow. We can be superstars, playmakers and leaders, but we must all realize that we are part of a larger organic whole in which everyone benefits from the productivity, talent pooling, synergies and efficiencies that come with cooperation, support, cross-pollination and positive competition. This is the ecosystem concept. In order to be a leader and contribute effectively to the ecosystem, one must be a self-starter. Motivation is the key to finding your passion and then going out and galvanizing the world with it. With this power comes responsibility and one must take ownership for cause and effect, learn from his or her mistakes and bounce back better and stronger when adversity, challenges and obstacles push forth their life lessons.