Local Tween Takes Bullies Head-On

Ann Arbor native Rudy Washington has taken a stand against bullying. Find out what he's done and how you can help.

Rudy Washington, 12, has a way of standing out. Take the time in 2011 his family visited Disney’s Magic Kingdom.

“He started dancing when the floats went by,” says Starr, his mom. “Visitors are not allowed to get on the floats, but Rudy got on the parade.” Later, Disney employees invited the 6-year-old up again for the evening parade.

“He does not have a shy bone in his body. That’s when I thought, ‘OK, this kid is different,'” Starr adds.

Different is good – but it can also draw criticism. Rudy knows that side, too – and it’s why he created his nonprofit, Rudy’s Sock Drive and the No Bully Zone.

“I was bullied out of school in 2016,” he explains. “I want to share my experiences with people from around the world and say bullying is not an OK thing.”

Rudy, an Ann Arbor native whose family recently moved to Georgia, does anti-bullying presentations in schools. And in exchange, he asks the students to collect socks he then donates to homeless shelters.

Now, on Oct. 28, Rudy is hosting his first No Bully Zone Rally here in Trenton.

Geared at kids ages 6-18, it’ll feature Matt Langdon of the Hero Round Table (an international anti-bullying organization), former NFL linebacker Ian Gold, Detroit FBI division head David P. Gelios, MasterChef contestant Amanda Saad and more – all speaking on bullying prevention and awareness.

“I want kids to know that you should always be an upstander” – vs. a bystander – “and bullying is not your fault,” he says. “And, if you see bullying, you should always speak up and tell an adult.”

Amanda Rahn
Amanda Rahn
Amanda Rahn is a freelance journalist, copy editor and proud Detroiter. She is a graduate of Wayne State University’s journalism school and of the Columbia Publishing Course at Oxford University. Amanda is a lover of translated contemporary fiction, wines from Jura and her dog, Lottie.
- Advertisement -

LATEST STORIES

Wander Through Metro Detroit’s Most Beautiful Gardens

Appreciate the beauty of the season by bringing your family to these gorgeous gardens.

Memorial Day Parades and Events in Metro Detroit

Pay homage to our fallen soldiers.

Amazing Mother’s Day Gift Experiences for Metro Detroit Moms

Want to give your mom an out-of-the-box gift to show her you really care? Check out some of these cool ideas to make it a Mother’s Day experience you won’t forget.

Don’t Miss Traverse City Uncorked

Brought to you by Traverse City Uncorked.



- Advertisement -