He’s an Alaskan doing big things in the Lower 48: You may recognize him from the cover of the book, “I Am Alaskan,” and now you can find him online on the Oprah Winfrey Network.
A professional skateboarder and motivational speaker, 26-year-old Preston Pollard joined Daybreak on the couch Monday to talk about #OWN and his journey outside of the Last Frontier.
“#OWN is all about inspiration,” he said. “Being a young man growing up in Alaska, I always wanted some inspiration but I didn’t see a lot of it. So with this #OWN show, it’s online on Oprah.com and I get an opportunity to share my personal stories from different things I had to go through, different struggles I had to go through. I can talk to young people and let them know that it’s ok if they make mistakes and I can just give them some hope for that one to two minutes. It’s really wonderful, I really enjoy it.”
Pollard calls himself a “regular guy from Alaska.” He started skateboarding and said he always had a passion for helping people. He started motivational speaking at 18 and admits to being nervous and scared when he first started at Chester Valley Elementary School. He worked his way up to Wendler Middle School and eventually went on to speak at high schools.
When he was 21, Pollard left Anchorage to pursue a career in skateboarding.
“The love for skateboarding came just because I’m an ADD kid,” he said. “I was in special ed growing up because I was so hyper and couldn’t sit still.”
He continued to make motivational speeches and began TV hosting for Juce TV in California. Soon enough, people started to take notice. He was given the opportunity to speak to youth in Compton, California; then his information was passed along to the OWN.
One year and three meetings later, the network called to give Pollard the gig of a lifetime with his own two-minute segment on Oprah.com.
Pollard has been on billboards in Times Square. He’s done some acting and modeled for Forever 21 and Nike. He now has his own skateboard line, with a deck featuring a famous portrait of himself taken by Anchorage photographer Brian Adams.
“I’ve always started from hanging out with people that always did better than me,” he said. “I hang out with a lot of people that are always doing amazing things, so they inspire me to do better.”
Click here to watch Pollard’s video, “The Reward of Leaving Your Comfort Zone.”