On May 31, Medford High School alum and Race Director of the Boston Marathon Dave McGillivray spoke at the McGlynn Elementary and Middle School about his new book, “Dream Big: A Story of Courage and Determination.” McGillivray not only organizes the Boston Marathon and many other road races, but he is also a motivational speaker, having delivered over 1,900 speeches to all age groups worldwide.

Principals Diane Guarino and Nick Tucci welcomed him to the school and thanked the Chamber of Commerce Citizens of the Year (COTY) for co-sponsoring the event. Dave, along with Jack Dempsey, a Media Teacher at MHS who filmed the event, and Dominic Camarra, a retired Foreign Language Teacher at MHS, have all received the Citizen of the Year Award from the Chamber.

“This is where it all started,” Dave said to begin. “I grew up in North Medford, and attended the Davenport Elementary School, the Roberts Junior High School, and graduated in 1972 from Medford High School as the valedictorian. I always say that everything I achieved in my life I learned in Medford.”

He asked the students if they run or walk. A lot of students raised their hands for both. Then he asked them if any had ever run a road race. A few of the students raised their hands. Then he asked the students if any of them would ever want to run a road race. Hands went up and Dave chose a student, Xavier, and asked him to come onto the stage.

He presented him with a medal. On the back of the medal was Dave’s home address. Dave told Xavier that once he ran a road race and received his own medal, then Xavier could mail back Dave’s medal to him. “I’ve given out about 400 medals and I’ve had 390 returned!”

Dave continued, “When I was little, I had big dreams. I wanted to be an athlete and play for the Celtics or the Red Sox. But I was little and kids would always pick me last. Even in high school, I was the last one cut from the basketball team. I felt rejected when I didn’t get picked. I mean, I never dreamed I would become the Boston Marathon Race Director. I dreamed of being Larry Bird! I’d pray to God to help me grow. While I may not have grown in height, I did grow morally, intellectually ... it is who you are on the inside that is important.”

A number of the students and teachers approached Dave to thank him for his presentation. The school gave Dave a McGlynn School t-shirt that states, “Kindness begins with me.”

In addition to Tucci, Guarino and McGlynn Middle Assistant Principal Jody Liu, also in attendance were School Committee Members Kathy Kreatz and Paul Ruseau, and State Representative Paul Donato.