“I had the great fortune of having Mr. Cook as both a teacher and a coach. In addition to being extremely knowledgeable about health and wellness issues, Coach Cook was always passionate about promoting healthy lifestyles among his students and athletes. His guidance helped me improve not only as a runner and a student, but as a person. He encouraged everyone around him to strive for more, and in doing so, helped a lot of people achieve extraordinary goals. Coach Cook, through the achievement of his life-long dream of hiking the Appalachian Trail, is living proof that if you work hard, and bring passion, focus, and determination to your goals, there is no limit to what you can achieve. It is my sincere hope that he has the opportunity to share his compelling life story with others because from what I’ve heard of it, it is everything from eye-opening to inspiring… I found it very motivational, and I have total confidence that, by sharing this story, he can make a positive difference in peoples’ lives.” 

~ Michael P Smith, PwC | Assurance – Asset Management (Ret.)

“It is my pleasure to recommend Brad Cook for your consideration. This is an educator of professional ability, a friend, a person of great character and human dignity. He is a unique teacher with a special gift. He is dynamic and captivating as he addressed his classes on current situations and problems that affected students in their existing environment of drugs, depression, stress, and violence. Mr. Cook was creative, communicative, and exciting to listen to in class as he provided opportunistic choices to students to have in mind and make the correct one as they encountered their own critical mundane situations. Brad revelled in his opportunities to help students and set them straight. His caring for kids set him apart as an advocate for their success in life by making wholesome healthful living choices at the time and in the future. He was also a guidance counselor to students to ascertain what was happening in their lives, especially in their neighborhoods and projects. Mr. Cook’s knowledge of health education is outstanding, especially in the areas, which adversely affect young people. His “Trail Dreams” program is dynamic and enlighting and would have awesome results that would benefit all young participants.” 

~ Robert Bartlett (Brockton Public Schools…Principal (Ret.)

“I remember preparing for Mr. Cook’s Heath class in the second semester of 7th grade. I realized very shortly why other students were drawn to this man. He had this refreshing attitude on life, and his liveliness in the classroom kept students engaged and inspired. I was fortunate enough to become reunited with him as a coach in my senior year of high school track, and because of his knowledge coupled with his awareness and compassion culminated to everyone’s fullest potential. My proudest moment was when our 4×800 relay team broke the MA state record that qualified us to compete at nationals, but it would not have been possible without the care and support Coach Cook had for us.” 

~ Kevin Gill, All-American High School Miler, member of 4X800 MA state record team and Bridgewater State University graduate

“Coach Cook cared more about his athletes than any coach I ever knew. He was always willing to stay later than other coaches to help athletes improve…involved w/ the college application process. Coach was the reason my MA state record 4X800 relay team was able to go to Nationals. He alone raised the funds necessary for us to go to NC to compete. His dedication to helping children and his larger than life personality is appreciated.” 

~ Mike Gomes, Harvard University Senior

“Brad Cook is a role model; a person kids and adults can look up to. When it comes to setting and achieving goals, I have never met an individual so determined and passionate about following through on things most important to him. He came to visit our Boys & Girls Club of Brockton members prior to the start of his dream to hike the Appalachian Trail. Brad had to take care of many matters before that daunting task but still dedicated his time to encourage our kids to turn their dreams into reality. His spirit and energy moved our kids and staff. They were excited to come to the Club and track his progress along the trail. Brad is the prime example that, with motivation and direction, anything is possible.” 

~ Jay Miller, Assistant Executive Director, Boys & Girls Club of Brockton, MA

“It was great hearing your story, both informally and in your wonderful presentation. You are an excellent speaker, and your message is so inspiring.”

~ Laurie Potteiger, Information Services Manager, Appalachian Trail Conservancy, Harpers Ferry, WV

“… Many of our young people are considered to be “kids at risk” and Brad has the ability to connect with them because he has been at that place himself and also has decades of experience working with kids as a teacher… I would whole-heartedly recommend Brad Cook’s presentation to any group of young people. Brad’s message was much appreciated by all, including staff and I know he got through to some by the discussion that resulted after his presentation.”

~ Stephen Tomasia, DYS Brockton Caseworker

“Brad Cook appeared before our Boyscout Troop in April. His presentation was uplifting, entertaining and enlightening. What a refreshing topic, and one that should be shared with all! He presented in a manner that was both humorous and entertaining, while still getting his message across to the entire audience. That’s a hard combination to achieve, but he did it with style and grace. He would be a huge asset to ANY group who is looking for an amazing, one-of-a-kind speaker. His ability to connect to a variety of personalities, cultures, and ages is a true gift!”

~ Tom North, Scoutmaster, Troop 199

Trail Dreams at the Kingston Public Library. OR How Hiking the Appalachian Trail Turned my Life Around.


On the trail to a happier place-The Boston Globe South

Brad Cook-Trail Dreams in Boston Globe