Founded in 2015 as a not-for-profit organization, Norwayne Boxing Gym’s mission is for every at-risk kid who walks into the gym to leave physically and mentally fit, of strong character, and with a dream for the future. We do that through daily programs that teach kids to:
- Work hard and push their limits
- Study and gain technical skills
- Give their time and make a difference
- Be a role model for others
An Unbelievable Founding Story… Rocky
Inspired at the age of 13 when he went to see the movie “Rocky,” founder Jeff Styers set off on a path to learn how to become a professional boxer. First in his backyard getting beat up by just about every neighborhood kid. And later at an inner-city Detroit boxing gym where he suffered his first knockout. A defining moment. From there he went on to earn his gloves winning match after match in the amateurs, in the U.S. Marine Corps, and finally as a pro. At the pinnacle of his career, his inner voice said, “Jeff, you’re done.” And that was it. He boxed two more matches, won, gave up his sponsorships and moved on, finishing his professional career 11-0. Years later as a successful business leader in the community, it dawned on him that the skills he used in boxing where the same ones that helped him build a nationally recognized staffing and recruiting business. Let’s share that, he thought. And so, Norwayne Boxing Gym was born.
Heroic and Historic Norwayne
It was 1942, and as U.S. involvement in World War II escalated the automotive plants in this region stopped building cars and began building war planes and tanks. It was all part of the massive effort to win the battle in the Atlantic, the Pacific and just about everywhere in between. Patriotic workers flooded into town to do their part, and they needed a place to live. That’s when the U.S. National Housing Agency began building the Norwayne subdivision. In these houses that surround Norwayne Boxing Gym thousands of hard-working, dedicated families helped America win the war.
The community was originally intended to be temporary housing, but the people and the houses stayed. Norwayne is now experiencing a revitalization and renewal thanks to Norwayne Boxing Gym and other neighborhood initiatives to restore and preserve all that makes this place unlike any other. In fact, in 2013, Norwayne was recognized on the National Register of Historic Places. Today, this neighborhood’s heritage of fighting and winning lives on at Norwayne Boxing Gym, where we’re proud to call Norwayne our home and its kids, our champions.