Latest Citizen Recognition Program recipient defies the odds
The City of Reno recognized Grant Denton as its most recent Citizen Recognition Program recipient at the July 31, 2019 Reno City Council meeting.
“Congratulations to Grant from all of us at the City of Reno,” Reno City Councilmember Neoma Jardon said. “His life story is one of resounding resilience and a pay-it-forward mentality, which we can all learn from.”
Denton is currently the Operations Manager for the Downtown Reno Partnership, but it’s the unique path that he’s taken to get to this point that makes his personal journey so inspirational.
Born into a broken family, Denton ultimately turned to drugs and life on the streets as an escape. A high school dropout, he made ends meet by becoming a street performer and entertainer on the Las Vegas strip.
At 24 years old, he started a family, but due to his drug addiction eventually lost everything. After being homeless for three years and facing a multi-year sentence, Denton made the decision to change his life while sitting in a jail cell.
Since his release, Denton has created a wellness program called Rise and Grind for women in recovery from substance use and mental health disorders. He is also the creator of the Karma Box Project, a community initiative which helps those who are less fortunate.
Recently, Grant has started speaking to students across the country with Think Kindness. He has found a passion for speaking to youth about the value of self-worth and the long-term ripple effect that kindness has on an individual and a community.
“Grant is one of our most important homeless advocates here in the City of Reno,” Reno Mayor Hillary Schieve said. “Ultimately it was a growth mindset and acts of kindness that brought Grant from being a homeless drug addict engaged in a life of crime, to becoming a flourishing and contributing servant to our Reno community. We are lucky to have him.”
Past City Superheroes recognized by the Reno City Council are as follows:
- Monica DuPea: Director, Nevada Youth Empowerment Project (NYEP)
- Ed Ferrell and his dog, Waldo: Renown volunteers
- Ken Krater: Chair, Operation Downtown
- Megan Rachow: Attorney (Project Safe Neighborhoods)
- Carol Reitz: Founder, JUSTin Hope Foundation
- Henry "Hank" Sosnowski: Professor, Truckee Meadows Community College
- Meredith Tanzer: Vice President of the Board of Directors for Our Center