Personality: Ellery D. Lundy
Spotlight on founder and president of Broken Men Foundation and Youth Academy
4/7/2022, 11 p.m.
For the last seven years, Ellery Dean Lundy has strived, in his own words, “to make broken youth better men.”
The Richmond native and retired Richmond deputy sheriff founded the Broken Men Foundation and Youth Academy in 2014 to do just that. He and others serve as mentors to youths ages 10 to 17 through a 16-week program that covers a variety of topics aimed at developing social skills, self-esteem, academic achievement and problem solving.
“We want to teach men through our program how to take back the community and to lead in a positive way,” Mr. Lundy says. “We want to extend our hands to the youth and raise boys to become men.”
Now in the midst of a pandemic that has taken a toll on mental and emotional health, Mr. Lundy and others are continuing to provide an outlet for growth to Richmond’s youths.
Through the program, youths also learn responsibility, citizenship and community involvement, with the hope that it will help them to be better people and steer them away from the kind of poor relationships and lack of guidance that led them to the foundation.
“That hurt and pain may have caused them to become stagnant and disconnected with life’s situations,” says Mr. Lundy of the kinds of conflicts that typically lead young boys to the foundation.
“Men have a tendency not to communicate. We act out in different fashions, sometimes resulting in domestic violence, becoming abusive parents or worse.
“Men have to understand they aren’t alone in this journey, and it is OK to talk about the past and move forward,” he says.
Mr. Lundy’s efforts to aid the community through mentorship led him to become certified in crisis intervention and in the Father Hood Initiative program for fragile families through the Virginia Department of Social Services. He also has coached various sports, from girls’ basketball to football. He also has officiated games, from Little League to semi-pro sports.
One of the major concerns for Broken Men Foundation is to find a new larger location for their work. Securing funding, investors and adding more community partners are a major part of his strategy to attain the goal.
For now though, the foundation and Mr. Lundy continue their work. Already, more than 100 youths have gone through the program, with many going on to college or jobs.
Outreach and fundraising programs are slated for April 30 and May 7, with a fishing trip planned for youths currently in the program prior to their graduation ceremony on June 9.
Mr. Lundy’s advice for the boys and men he meets are universal in its call for self-awareness, openness and commitment—a fitting lesson for those needing a better path in life.
“Finish what you start and if you don’t listen you will listen,” Mr. Lundy says. “Be humble or be humbled.”
Meet a mentor and builder of boys to strong men and this week’s Personality, Ellery Dean Lundy:
No. 1 volunteer position: Founder and president of Broken Men Foundation and Youth Academy and mentor from 2014 to present.
Occupation: Retired Richmond deputy sheriff, 1994 to 2019.
Date and place of birth: Dec. 28 in Richmond.
Where I live now: Richmond.
Education: Graduated From George Wythe High School; some college, J. Sargeant Reynolds and John Tyler Community colleges.
Family: Wife, mother, two daughters, one son, two grandsons and two brothers.
The Broken Men Foundation: Assists with boys who have had bad relationships or need a little guidance in making the right decisions. That hurt and pain may have caused them to become stagnant and disconnected with life’s situations.
Men have a tendency not to communicate. We act out in different fashions, sometimes resulting in domestic violence, becoming abusive parents or worse. Men have to understand they aren’t alone in this journey, and it is OK to talk about the past and move forward.
We strive to make broken youth better men by doing the following:
- Give them the emotional support they need to overcome their past.
- Teach them basic life skills and life lessons.
- Empower them to be more productive citizens and leaders.
- Provide them with a family of support.
We want to teach men through our program how to take back the community and to lead in a positive way.
Mission: We want to extend our hands to the youths and raise boys to become men.
When and why founded: Founded in February 2014 based upon the needs of men and young men needing to have a safe haven to express themselves.
How the name was chosen: Understanding just because you have been broken doesn’t mean you have to stay broken. Let people know that everyone deals with something in life and that we’re better together.
No. 1 goal or project: Find a larger stand-alone building, a new location to create an engagement center for the development of our youths for the future.
Strategy for achieving goals: Saving, investing and creating more community partners and, of course, looking for the right location.
The Broken Men Foundation’s No. 1 challenge: Not having enough space to accommodate all of our young men and funding.
How I plan to meet it: Applying for grants and talking with investors.
The Broken Men Foundation serves: Men of all ages and boys ages 10 to 17.
The Broken Men Foundation partners with: Johnson Charities, Reconciliation Church, Fobbs Quality Signs, Cain’s Power Washing, 4 Lady’s Lashes, Project Give Back to The Community, RVAwoodfirepizza and Walker Studios.
Best advice I give to Black boys and men today: Finish what you start; if you don’t listen, you will listen; and be humble or be humbled.
The Broken Men Foundation Youth Academy is: The Academy specializes in mentoring young men between the ages of 10 to 17. The program offers a 16-week curriculum covering a variety of topics aimed at better understanding adolescent behavior to allow our mentors to teach conflict resolution. Our organization is deeply rooted in academic achievement, the establishment of social skills, self-esteem, responsibility, citizenship and community involvement.
Upcoming events: Registration for our upcoming outreach program and fundraiser fish fry on April 30 and May 7 from 11a.m. to 2 p.m. at Reconciliation Church of God, 630 E. 16th St. We also have a fishing trip to Virginia Beach for the young men for the completion of the program on June 4, and a graduation ceremony 6:30 to 8 p.m. June 9 at the Richmond Police Academy.
A perfect day for me is: Knowing that my family, our young men and mentors are good, as well as having another day to live is always great.
What I am learning about myself during the pandemic: Simply resilient.
Something I love to do that most people would never imagine: Feeding the birds and watching the different species enjoy the food in the backyard.
Quote that inspires me: If there is no struggle, there is no progress.
My friends describe me as: Loving, funny, fair and firm.
At the top of my “to-do” list is: Make sure to take a nice vacation.
Best late-night snack: Butter popcorn.
Best thing my parents ever taught me: My mom, Lydia Lundy, taught me to make sure that you listen to people before you respond and to be caring. Also, make sure that you stand up for yourself when you have to and that no one is more important than you. Strive to be the best that you can be.
Person who influenced me the most: My mom, Lydia Lundy.
Book that influenced me the most: “A Hand to Guide Me” by Denzel Washington.
What I’m reading now: “The Hill We Climb” by Amanda Gorman.
Next goal: Finding a larger facility.