New York native and current Atlanta resident Christopher Butts has an energetic passion for philanthropy and community empowerment efforts. He most recently awarded The Calvin Butts Memorial Scholarships to high school seniors around the country, who have faced various adversities.

What inspired your passion for philanthropy?

After losing my brother in 2009 to violence, our family has dedicated our lives to using Calvin’s story to create awareness and give back to high school seniors who have endured and overcome challenging circumstances during their high school journey.

Tell us about The Calvin Butts Memorial Scholarship and the Quarantine Class of 2020 Virtual Ceremony.

The Calvin Butts Memorial Scholarship was founded in 2010. We have currently handed out over fifty scholarships to deserving seniors up in Riverhead, NY. We recently handed out our first scholarship here in Georgia at Lakeside High School to one senior who is now attending KSU. Quarantine Class of 2020 is our first virtual commencement where we highlighted six seniors with the Calvin Butts Memorial Scholarship. The Quarantine 2020 program featured DJ Root Queen (famous Atlanta DJ), Commencement Speaker Nasim Al-Hakim (successful mortgage manager and author of ‘Never Have a Bad Day’), and some inspirational words from Goo Goo Atkins (celebrity stylist).

Any advice for people who are interested in philanthropy but not sure where to start?

The biggest piece of advice I can give anyone is to START. Whatever idea God has put on your heart or mind is not by coincidence so act on it. Somewhere, someone is looking for exactly what you have to offer. Next, I would say find someone who is successful in the area you are looking toward, study them and be humble enough to ask for help and ask how you can be of service to them as well. Lastly, keep your heart and intentions pure. Pray and keep God first.

To support The Calvin Butts Memorial Scholarship, click here.




All images by Paige Lutes Photography