Orion Jean

TIME Kid Of The Year

  • Topics:
  • Motivation & Inspiration
  • Parenting & Family
  • Professional Development
  • Audiences:
  • Grade K-5 Students
  • Teachers & Staff
  • Fundraisers

Fee: $5K-10K

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2021 TIME Kid Of The Year
Collected 500K Books for Charity
Seen on Ellen, Good Morning America, CBS Evening News
Author of “Race to Kindness” (HarperCollins)

Orion Jean is a young man on a mission, sharing the gift of reading with hundreds of thousands of kids. He may be only 13 years old, but the number on his mind is 500,000.

That’s how many books the Texas boy hopes will be donated by the end of the month.

“I want to be able to share my love of literacy with as many people as possible,” he told CBS News.

In 2020, Jean won a student kindness contest where he displayed his own campaign of compassion. “Kindness is a virtue we can all possess. If we are willing to,” he said. “So why not start today? Because right now, it’s what we need more than ever.”

Jean told CBS News that winning that content “was really just the catalyst for something much bigger. It started out as an idea, but here we are today, the race to kindness was born.”

With his $500 prize, Jean donated toys to a Dallas Children’s Hospital. Next, through food drives and partnering with a relief group, he helped collect 100,000 meals for Texas families.

Now, his focus is books for children who may not have them at home.

“It’s all about my moral duty to help people,” he said. “You know, it’s my responsibility to be able to see these people who need help and know that I have the resources to help them.”

Deep thoughts from a boy who has yet to start the sixth grade.

“I hope that the impact that I have had is enough to keep people continuing to race to kindness and continuing to join me in this marathon because it’s not a sprint,” Jean said. “It’s not a one-time thing; it’s not a three-time thing. It’s something that can hopefully be continued on for years and years to come.”

An ambitious goal from a child whose heart just might be as big as he is.


“Orion Jean is leading the next generation with greatness and KINDNESS, and he is a great reminder that Head Start staff and educators have monumental impacts on how the the future think and act. We couldn't have asked for a better keynote to start off this monumental week!”
National Head Start Association
“Fifth-grader is on a race to spread kindness.”
The Washington Post
“Orion Jean, is an 11-year-old boy with a huge heart, is changing the lives of kids across the country.”
CBS Evening News

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