By Jamila Cross
Kedan Crosby is a natural athlete. Gifted and grounded, he has spent the last four years with his alma mater Fatima College in the execution of the college’s Developmental Football programme as one of the youth coaches in the U13/Form 1 Division.
Graduating from Fatima in 2003, he went on to become a standout US Collegiate player at the University of Rhode Island where he graduated with his BA in Business Communication in 2009, and is currently employed with Nestlé Caribbean as the demand and supply planner for the Infant Nutrition Business. Kedan is the eldest of three sons. His parents Andre and Karen Crosby have been pillars of strength, hard work, ambition, happiness and success and are the driving force behind all that he has achieved thus far.
“Without their constant support and belief in me, nothing would be possible and it is for this reason that I truly believe you can never underestimate the importance of a strong support system in your life.”
Kedan’s parents always tell the story of taking him on a trip to Margarita where they recount having to buy a football for him in every store they visited. He came back to Trinidad with a suitcase of footballs and so the love affair with sport began.
As a young man, cricket and basketball had some of his attention, but football always reigned supreme and he played the game, at every opportunity, becoming a certified ‘ball junkie’. At the age of four, he stated that he could “name the entire Strike Squad team and what numbers they would wear”.
How did you make the transition from secondary school to the US?
“During my final year at Fatima, I was chosen to represent a Secondary Schools’ Select Team in the first College Showcase held in Barbados. After the tournament, I was bombarded with scholarship offers from a number of top schools in the US, all offering me full athletic scholarships. I chose the University of Rhode Island, and I have never regretted that choice. My time spent in the US was definitely one of the best experiences in my life; we won back-to-back Atlantic 10 championships, and I even scored in the championship games.”
How did you become involved with Fatima College as a coach?
“Some years ago, a former teammate and I, also now a coach at the school, were watching the team play, and we started to reminisce about our playing days and how much the game has changed given our experiences playing competitively locally as well as abroad. We discussed coming back to coach.
Around the same time the Fatima Old Boys’ Association (FOBA) had identified Hayden Martin (former Fatima footballer & former St Mary’s teacher & head coach) as the person they would have liked to take over to implement his coaching philosophies and experience. One thing led to the next. Some former players started to talk and we were selected by Martin to assist and help implement the successful programme at the college in the coaching capacity.”
How has mentoring young athletes impacted your life?
“Under the tutelage of Martin (Technical Director), the coaches have implemented one of the best youth programmes in the country amassing a total of 18 titles/trophies in the process since 2015.
The ultimate objective of the programme is to produce well-rounded student-athletes in an effectively functioning team, with players that are unhindered by technical and tactical shortcomings. All of the coaches involved are former student athletes that would have represented the school over the years at both national & international levels so the commitment and passion for the school, the football, and the boys are key attributes that we all share.”
How do you balance your career, family and contribution?
“My relationship with sport from a very early age has helped to craft my outlook on life as well as instilled in me a certain level of dedication, loyalty, and discipline that I have been able to mirror in every aspect of my life whether it be personal or professional relationships. It has allowed me to be balanced and deal with any sort of adversity or difficult situation.”
Kedan for your contribution, commitment, and passion we salute you and wish you continued success as you continue to have a tremendous impact, influencing players on and off the field.
Jamila Cross is a triathlete, former professional footballer for Sevilla FC women’s Club Spain, and mother of three boys Tishad, Akim and Santiago. She is the founder of the Mariama Foundation, a registered non-profit organisation raising the storytelling bar for the Caribbean’s female athletes.