This book was written to emphasize the importance of hip-hop and the positive impact of inspirational elementary school teachers.
The story of a young boy and his memories of going to school in Toronto. Follow a Young Maestro Fresh Wes as he finds new adventures in school and is introduced to the world of hip-hop. Wes competes in the schools writing contest against ‘Julia the Great’ and ‘Hakeem the Dream’. Nervous, but ready to compete, Wes draws inspiration from his family, his teachers, his friend and mentor DJ Greg and all that he has learned from hip-hop. He finds the power of writing and uses his voice to capture the reader. Get ready for a hip-hop journey!
Wes “Maestro” Williams is a Juno Award-winning Hip Hop artist, Tedx Presenter and a Gemini Award-nominated actor. In 2019 he became the first Hip Hop artist inducted into the Canadian Song Writer’s Hall Of Fame and his albums have reached gold and platinum status.
Released under the pseudonym of Maestro Fresh Wes, his debut album Symphony In Effect was the first Canadian Rap album to reach gold and platinum certification.
As an actor, Wes has been in several film and television productions including 8 seasons on CBC’s award winning sitcom Mr.D where he played the role of teacher/ vice-principal Paul Dwyer.
His first book, STICK TO YOUR VISION: How to Get Past the Hurdles and Haters to Get Where You Want to Be, was the recipient of the 2011 White Pine Literary Award and was also implemented in the curriculum of the Adult Learning Program at Nova Scotia Community College. Not only was the book mandatory reading for grade 10 students, but Wes also received an honorary diploma at the NSCC’s Akerley Campus for his contribution to the Province of Nova Scotia.
He has been a guest speaker for the Governor-General of Canada’s Urban Arts Forum and has also participated in round table discussions on Parliament Hill regarding the subject of race relations.
He supports several charitable organizations like Special Olympics, Covenant House, Battered Women’s Support Services and The African Aids Society. This is his second book.
Rhodora Meliton-Vanderpool has always been a strong voice advocating for teachers and students. After graduating from Western University in London, she has dedicated over twenty years teaching in Toronto. She has taught every grade from Kindergarten to Grade 8.
She has received numerous teaching awards with her colleagues, including an Exemplary Practice Award. She assisted in welcoming new teachers through the New Teacher Induction Program as a mentor and a committee member. She is an active member of the Ontario Elementary Catholic Teachers Association and has participated in committees that focus on Social and Educational Aid here in Canada and around the world.
She was selected to be part of a panel to suggest changes to the Ontario Social Studies curriculum, highlighting the importance of knowing one’s own personal and family history.
She has been an advocate for teachers and students bringing issues of equity and equality to the forefront and the importance of recognizing Culturally Responsive Pedagogy & Diversity and Inclusion. She has been a dedicated coach at school but finds time to be a Sports Mom (Hockey, Baseball and Soccer).
She values being her children’s first teacher and number one cheerleader. Stick To Your Vision: Young Maestro Goes To School is her first book.
Leon “Eklipz” Robinson is a multi-dimensional artist who utilizes a vast skill set for expression of Self.
Throughout the years a constant muse has been his connection to Hip Hop Culture. He established Hamilton’s first hip hop clothing store, The Boom Spot.
He founded Live and Direct which was an underground Hip Hop Radio show on McMaster CFMU’s 93.3 along with DJ Realistic. He also started and organized Concrete Canvas Graffiti Showcase which was a three Day Hip Hop Festival in Hamilton.
In the year 2000, he won a citywide mural contest to paint a mural at Bennetto Recreational Centre.
He has worked on numerous art-based projects with The Boys and Girls Club of Hamilton. He is the winner of a John C. Holland Arts Award. In 2010, he self-published his first art book entitled, Hip Hop Homage which is an artbook that pays respect in portrait form to 50 Pioneers and Icons of Hip Hop. This is his third book.
“Maestro’s message is strong, powerful and relatable. This book is a must read for any child who is developing their own passion and dreams.” - Gerry Dee
— COMEDIAN, ACTOR, CREATOR AND STAR OF MR. D AND HOST OF FAMILY FEUD CANADA
“An outstanding achievement from one of Canada’s most prolific artists. You are drawn into the very real and raw experience of Young Maestro. This story is fun and filled with anecdotes that every child could relate to.” - Tonya Williams
— ACTRESS AND FOUNDER/ EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR OF REELWORLD FILM FESTIVAL/ REELWORLD SCREEN INSTITUTE
“Everyone who reads this book, young or young at heart, will benefit tremendously in so many ways. Another incredible contribution from the one and only Maestro.” - Kardinal Offishall
— SENIOR DIRECTOR OF URBAN A&R AT UNIVERSAL MUSIC, CEO OF STEP AND REPEAT
“Maestro taught me how to be a student of the game while being a legend. He always had excitement for creating new projects and his first children’s book is an indication of his dedication.” - Classified
— ARTIST/PRODUCER, CEO OF HALF LIFE RECORDS
“Stick to your Vision: Young Maestro Goes to School is a powerful story that brought me back to my school days as a young black boy and the son of Trinidadian-born parents. I knew that one day, even though facing adversity, I would play in the NBA. The book reaffirms to not only kids, but also to parents and teachers that positive influence, encouragement, hard work and sacrifices can make your dream come true.” - Jamaal Magloire
— ASSISTANT COACH & COMMUNITY AMBASSADOR, TORONTO RAPTORS AND PRESIDENT OF THE JAMAAL MAGLOIRE FOUNDATION