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The City of New Orleans

Mayor Mitchell J. Landrieu

Character Counts! NORDC athletics programs build character.

Character Counts! Educator John Forenti to Presented a 2-day Workshop "Pursuing Victory With Honor Presentation" for NORDC Staff

• Exploring the potential of sport beyond the won/lost percentage
• Examining the role of the coach in the development of character in athlete
• Gaining an understanding of the difference between gamesmanship and sportsmanship
• The Six Core Ethical Values that define the essence of character in the competitive athletes
• Pursuing Victory with Honor implementation strategies and tactics

John Forenti, a former Tulare County Teacher of the Year, is one of Josephson Institute’s most distinguished speakers and faculty members. Certified to lead our seminars in three disciplines – character development, sportsmanship, and workplace ethics – he has given training sessions to more than 3,000 educators, parents, and community members since 1996.

Character Counts! Overview  

NORDC youth programs foster character development, family, and personal growth, in part by instilling lessons from Character Counts!, the most widely implemented approach to character education.  The program was created by the Josephson Institute Center for Youth Ethics. 

Character Counts! provides training for coaches to help them promote sportsmanship and foster good character through Teaching, Enforcing, Advocating and Modeling (TEAM) the Six Pillars of Character: trustworthiness, respect, responsibility, fairness, caring and citizenship.

Each week focuses on one of 6 Pillars of Character.  Every practice begins with a three minute discussion about the importance of character, the pillar of the week and how to base behavior and decisions based on character.  The young players are also given cards with the 6 Pillars of Character and steps to making better decisions. 

NORDC’s implementation of the Character Counts! program is generously supported by Chevron.

Learn more about Character Counts at   

Resources for Parents

Character education begins at home by encourging young people to think independently and do the right thing. For information, resources and techniques to you support character education, click here.

Character Counts! Materials 

Cards are distributed to the youth with the 6 Pillars of Character and steps to making better decisions.  Those steps are:

1.  Stop and Think
2.  Clarify Goals
3.  Determine Facts
4.  Develop  Options
5.  Consider Consequences
6.  Choose
7.  Monitor and Modify 

The Six Pillars of Character:

Trustworthiness  Be honest • Don’t deceive, cheat, or steal • Be reliable — do what you say you’ll do • Have the courage to do the right thing • Build a good reputation • Be loyal — stand by your family, friends, and country

Respect Treat others with respect; follow the Golden Rule • Be tolerant and accepting of differences • Use good manners, not bad language • Be considerate of the feelings of others • Don’t threaten, hit or hurt anyone • Deal peacefully with anger, insults, and disagreements

Responsibility Do what you are supposed to do • Plan ahead • Persevere: keep on trying! • Always do your best • Use self-control • Be self-disciplined • Think before you act — consider the consequences • Be accountable for your words, actions, and attitudes • Set a good example for others

Fairness Play by the rules • Take turns and share • Be open-minded; listen to others • Don’t take advantage of others • Don’t blame others carelessly • Treat all people fairly

Caring Be kind • Be compassionate and show you care • Express gratitude • Forgive others • Help people in need

Citizenship Do your share to make your school and community better • Cooperate • Get involved in community affairs • Stay informed; vote • Be a good neighbor • Obey laws and rules • Respect authority • Protect the environment • Volunteer

Learn more about Character Counts at



Character Counts! 2014 Basketball Season

Many thanks to the Pelicans and Chevron for supporting NORDC Basketball and our Character Counts Champs!

NORDC Basketball Players Recognized at the April 16 Pelicans Game Each week during the 2014 basketball season, players from each NORDC team were recognized for exhibiting good character traits as part of the Character Counts Program. Four of those players were recognized at the 4-16-14 Pelicans game: Paul Brown from Harrell Playground, Gabriel Henry from Kenilworth Playground, Taylor Kees from Cut Off, and Kyron Peters from Harrell Playground.

The kids got basketballs on the court, and then Dell Demps sent gift bags over to their seats. The kids were the envy of the section. At the end, the Pelicans won, the kids won, and so did NORDC!

At half-time, Chevron’s “Teaming Up for NORDC” video was played on the Jumbotron, and then the announcer said:

The New Orleans Recreation Development Commission instills character through athletics, in part by participating in the national Character Counts program, created by the Josephson Institute Center for Youth Ethics.  The program provides training for coaches to help them promote sportsmanship and foster good character through teaching, enforcing, advocating and modeling the Six Pillars of Character, which are: Trustworthiness, Respect, Responsibility, Fairness, Caring and Citizenship.

Each week during basketball season, players from each team were recognized for exhibiting good character traits.  Four of those players are here with us tonight.  Please welcome Paul Brown from Harrell Playground, Gabriel Henry from Kenilworth Playground, Taylor Kees from Cut-Off, and Kyron Peters from Harrell Playground.

At center court with our honorees are Sakari Morrison from Chevron and Keith J. Wright from NORDC. NORDC wants to thank the New Orleans Pelicans and Chevron for their support of a great basketball season! 

See more photos here.







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Last updated: 10/14/2014 2:10:57 PM

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