Trainer helps turn kids’ lives around with Books Before Boxing

Khali Sweeney fell into the wrong crowd at a young age and spent several years on the streets of Detroit. Now, after turning his life around, he hopes his gym, Books Before Boxing, will prevent kids from making the same mistakes he made.

Downtown Boxing Gym on "Under The Radar" on PBS

How Ralph Wilson's $1 billion legacy is reshaping Detroit and Buffalo

With more than $1 billion to spend, the Ralph C. Wilson Jr. Foundation is less interested in funding show horses than work horses.

Rachael Gets Emotional Recalling Thanksgiving She Spent at Youth Center Boxing Gym in Detroit

Hitting the books: The boxing gym saving Detroit's youth

DETROIT -- The buildings sit, one after another, on E Vernor Highway -- dilapidated houses, abandoned businesses, boarded-up structures, vacant lots populated by more weeds than cars driving down the multilane street.

It's a row of blight on the east side of Detroit, a city searching for recovery for decades. In the middle of this depression is a light, one easily missed along the road in this once-powerful city. On quick glance, it looks like every other building from the outside. Then you ultimately stop in the vacant field that doubles as a parking lot and see the sign: "Welcome to Downtown BOXING GYM."

Jessica Hauser- 40 Under 40

In 2010, Jessica Hauser was busy with her studies, on a path toward a doctorate degree in political science at the University of Michigan.

But a personal training appointment led her to the Downtown Boxing Gym in Detroit. After learning about the gym’s financially struggling youth development program that was having amazing results with local kids, she couldn’t turn back.

So she ditched collegiate life and started as executive director, working alongside founder Khali Sweeney. Over the past eight years, she has helped to grow the gym into a thriving organization, establishing it as an official 501(c)3 nonprofit and purchasing and renovating a new building. And her knack for cultivating relationships has helped Hauser build a network of relentless supporters who care about the gym, including Quicken Loans founder and chairman Dan Gilbert and celebrities Madonna and Eminem.

Dog event raising money for Detroit's Downtown Boxing Gym

The Downtown Boxing Gym became a dog park for a day. Dozens of dogs of all shapes, sizes and breeds attended a fundraiser in our outdoor space. Click to watch coverage from Fox 2 News.

CNN Hero Khali Sweeney: 'I gotta tell her thank you'

CNN Heroes followed up and reported on Khali's trip to Alton, New Hampshire to visit an 8th grader who sent him an inspiring letter.

Eye on Detroit

This feature on the Downtown Boxing Gym aired as part of CBS's "Eye on Detroit" series.

FCC’s Carr wants to clear the road for connectivity

There was nothing particularly hard-hitting on a day when an FCC commissioner stepped into a boxing ring with a 3-year-old, but Brendan Carr did confirm his agency’s keen interest in autonomous vehicles and suggest that his agency will attempt to clear the road for them.

He also gave a rough timeline for the next step in the proposed merger between T-Mobile and Sprint.

“There’s really a global race underway for these autonomous vehicles,” Carr said between rounds of a day-long Metro Detroit tour. Given their importance to the economy and driving safety, “We really can’t afford to slow down or delay the progress that’s being made toward connected vehicles.”