May 3, 2012
Senior football player Al-Rilwan Adeyemi (Santa Monica, CA) has received the Dr. Evelyn Kirkley Award for Leadership at the 7th Annual USD United Front Multicultural Center Diversity Banquet.
The Dr. Evelyn Kirkley Award for Leadership is given to a student who led an organization as a member of an executive board and through their leadership capacity led initiatives that contributed to the development of leadership in others.
Adeyemi has been a four-year member of the Student Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC), representing USD Football at the meetings. He has worked as an Assistant Student Manager for USD Equipment Services while maintaining a 3.0 in his major, Political Science. Adeyemi completed the Toastmasters public speaking program, and he used his skills to give presentations to local children. At Sunset View Elementary, Adeyemi spoke about bullying and its causes and effects. At Mann Middle School, he talked about his experience of being a first generation college student.
Through SAAC, Adeyemi has participated in many community service activities, including Shop with a Jock, Light the Night for Leukemia and Lymphoma Research, and he has participated in the local MLK Day Parade as well as the Linda Vista Multicultural Parade. Adeyemi has also participated in the Autism Tree Project for the past three years, which has been one of Football's own team community service initiatives. Adeyemi helped to organize the Annual Winter Wonderland holiday event, designed to increase community awareness of autism and promote education. He also coordinated many campus visits with the organization. Over the years many children with autism have visited campus to watch football games. Here they were able to see their mentors play their sport and then get a chance to meet and greet the players after the game.
Adeyemi has also excelled on the field, garnering many athletics honors as well as academic honors. In 2010, Adeyemi became the youngest team captain of the USD Football team in school history, a role he reprised for his senior campaign in 2011. He is the all-time school leader in career interceptions, a member of the 2010 and 2011 All-PFL First Team, he was the USD Rookie of the Year in 2008, a San Diego Hall of Champions Athlete of the Month in 2008, and he was the PFL Freshman Defensive Player of the Year in 2008. He was also on the PFL Academic Honor Roll in Fall 2011.