Man of the Year
By Cooper Parson’20
Owen Reinhart ’20 is this year’s winner of The Roundup’s Man of the Year award. The award recognizes a Brophy student who embodies what it means to be a model individual inside and outside of the classroom.
Each year recipients are nominated by teachers, voted on by peers and ultimately chosen by The Roundup staff.
To many, Reinhart may seem like a kind and strictly athletically minded character.
While it is true that Reinhart plays both football and rugby for Brophy, even being recruited to play Football for Washington University in Saint Louis, his footprint on campus is much more far reaching.
Reinhart would first tell you that Rugby wasn’t always his calling. “I had tried a lot of other sports and didn’t like them, but there was one time when I went to a men’s Rugby game, and that’s where I fell in love with the sport.” said Reinhart.
Though Rugby has been a part of his life for 11 years, football may be what he’s best known for on campus.
“I’ve only been playing football since [going to] Brophy, I joined freshman football to make friends since I was the only one from my school to go to Brophy” Reinhart said.
“A huge reason why I enjoyed playing and continued to play was because of all the people I got to meet, you don’t lose a friend who you run sprints with all [them]summer, it’s one way to build a friendship that really lasts.”
Although Reinhart came into the sport not knowing many, he has left a lasting impression on all who he’s met in his last four years there.
“Owen Reinhart is one of the most genuine people I know,” said Campbell Helt ’20 “His work ethic is truly inspiring and motivated me to work harder for the betterment of our…team in the season. His character is unmatched and his dedication to helping others continues to amaze me.”
Though Reinhart doesn’t hold a leadership role on the team, he still manages to inspire through his drive.
He pushes himself to do the limits and doesn’t let time stand in the way of him getting to pursue his passions.
“Owen is the type of person who wants to do it all, he was doing football and Romero at the same time” said Antonio Ixehuatl ’20.
Ixehuatl has been partners with Owen this year in the sixth and seventh period service class called the Romero Project.
“I talked to him for the first time Sophomore year in football and during junior year in Honors Ignatian, but it wasn’t up until this year that I really got to know him” Ixehuatl said.
“The first time you meet him it’s this huge guy and it’s kind of intimidating, but once you get to know him you see he’s this very intelligent and funny teddy bear.”
Ixehuatl says that he and Reinhart hit it off very quickly upon being paired up with one another. They both shared an understanding and open mindset toward life.
This same mindset is what drove them to start a project they both saw as much needed on campus.
“Me and Antonio were talking one day about the site we work at for Romero and thought what if we bring a program like this to Brophy and make it a program at Loyola?” Reinhart said.
“It’s like an extension of Big Brothers to Loyola students, and we just got the approval from [Brophy Principal Mr. Bob Ryan] that it will be starting next year.”
The program is called Project Francis and it works to connect Brophy and Loyola Students more to one another.
“You can see the space in between Loyola and Brophy students, for some reason we have a hard time connecting and talking with them, that really bothered Owen and me” Ixehuatl said.
They wanted to build off of the foundation that Big Brothers had set and extend it to the academy.
“We will be recruiting Brophy students to be mentors of Loyola scholars…starting at sixth grade. Sixth and seventh graders will be paired with sophomores, juniors and seniors. Then for eighth graders, they will be paired with the Gophers. It’s probably my biggest accomplishment” Reinhart said.
The Romero Program and Project Francis aren’t the only work Reinhart does on campus.
When football ended and he found that he had extra time, Reinhart then decided to join the advocacy club, where he has been able to aid them in their work on DACA and Hope for Hospitality.
This interest in policy making and government extends beyond Brophy and has been something Reinhart has been invested in for some time.
“I really want to do something in foreign service, like in the diplomatic core. Majoring in political science is my plan right now” Reinhart said
“I’ve always been drawn to history and in the last four years I’ve become interested in foreign diplomacy and how much of an impact it has.”
This investment in foreign diplomacy drew him to a local Youth and Government program where he spends some of his limited time outside of school, competing usually in mock legislature.
“I started freshman year, and I joined the program specifically because of my interest in foreign policy” Reinhart said.
He enjoys how different it is from most of what he does extracurricularly, with it being a far cry from competing on the field in rugby or football.
Each year he attends the Conference on National Affairs which normally takes place in North Carolina.
Nearly 600 students from across the country come each year to debate their proposals.
Reinhart says he enjoys the positivity and good sportsmanship involved in the conference.
Upon leaving Brophy, Reinhart will have left an indelible mark on the community in a number of ways that I’m sure even he underestimates, being the humble person he is.
Ms. Deb Kauffman described him best in saying, “Owen easily signals his deepest and most authentic heart as he proves that he’s every kind of wonderful”.