Meet 20-year old Joey Parker. Originally from Ventura, California and now studying Mass Communications at Idaho State University, he has amassed quite a following with The Joey Parker Movement. Parker launched The Joey Parker Movement, a humanitarian blog, in the summer of 2009 after what he calls a life changing trip to Kenya, Africa. In a short two year span his blog has caught the attention of thousands of people and has featured many celebrities, from Serena Williams to Sophia Bush. The Joey Parker Movement website is viewed in more than 100 countries and his Twitter account has more than 6,000 followers. Joey Parker is the perfect example of someone making a difference in the simplest, yet highly effective, way. He knows that we, the younger generation, are a major force in shaping our own destiny and he is doing his part to make a positive change and build a better future for everyone. The most admirable thing is he is doing this because deep down in his heart you can tell he truly cares, it’s not to gain notoriety or for self satisfaction, but because he knows that every person can make a difference. Mr. Parker was kind enough to sit down and answer a few, okay sixteen, questions about his blog and his exciting, and without a doubt promising future!
When did you start The Joey Parker movement and what inspired you to
I started blogging the summer of 2009. It was right after my trip to Kenya, Africa. That trip truly changed my life. It was a trip unlike anything I ever believed I would be able to partake in. When I got back to the states I wanted to share my stories and try and get others involved. I never thought I would be a “blogger” but after a while people became interested in what I had to say so I kept going with it. I then thought interviewing celebrities would be interesting and to keep a positive spin to each interview. There is so much negativity out there and I wanted my website to be one where others could go to feel inspired.
Who was your first celebrity interview?
My first interview was with the incredible Marlee Matlin. She is such an inspiration and amazing person. Her being my first interview was huge. Love everything she stands for!!
Who has been your best celebrity interview?
Honestly, that is really hard for me to choose. Each one has been so unique. Two that pop into my mind would be Sophia Bush and Eliza Dushku. These both were phone interviews. The inspiring work they both do is incredible. Sophia’s passion for our planet and Eliza’s work in Uganda are why those two stand out to me as most inspirational.
Who has been your most inspiring celebrity interview?
Each have inspired me in different ways. Style Network star Ruby Gettinger was one that I did recently that I found extremely inspiring. Her journey to lose weight has inspired so many people to join her. Also another one that I found most inspiring was Brittany Snow. I interviewed her around the time she helped launch the Love Is Louder movement. Such an important and much needed movement.
Which celebrity surprised you the most with their interview?
The one who has surprised me the most would be Denise Richards. She is the real deal and an incredible person. She is such an amazing mother and beyond talented. In many ways I would consider her a mentor of mine.
Who is your dream interview and what would you ask them?
This is so cliché but I find Angelina Jolie so interesting. She is mysterious, funny, and a person I look up to tremendously. I would love to just sit and have a cup of coffee with her and see what she had to say. I would ask her where her motivation to help derives from. She is one of the most incredible philanthropists out there.
What are your future plans for The Joey Parker Movement?
It’s really hard for me to say what the future has in store for me. I launched the blog in 2009 and it has exploded ever since. I hope people will continue to read what I have to say and that I will be able to maintain it as a platform to raise awareness about various causes I am passionate about.
What is the best advice you have ever received in an interview?
Like I said earlier my interview with Brittany Snow was very inspiring. She told me,
“In middle school and high school I had a girl who bullied me daily. She made up songs about me and taught them to the school. She tried to get me to kill myself. It created other problems for me as well and for years I struggled with the effects. My advice to others going through that is to be strong and know you are not alone. There are many people who have gone through being bullied, feeling alone, or depressed. There are resources and places to go to get help. High School and college doesn’t last forever. And you are not alone.”
I feel this is so important to understand. We all face various storms in life but we need to understand that these storms pass and when they are over it builds us up to be the stronger person we are today. If we never have these negative experiences how can we learn to appreciate the good that happens.
What are your hopes for our generation?
With a billion people on our planet without access to safe and clean drinking water I hope our generation changes this. We have all the sources to do it we just now must go forward with it. I hope our generation grows up with an open mind and passion to make a difference. There are so many hopes I have. I dream of a day that poverty will be eradicated, a day where we all are treated equal no matter who one loves, a day where we come together in unity instead of drift away in conflict. As the Beatles said, “All You Need Is Love.”
I’m a political junkie and it’s obvious that you are very interested
in world events, human rights and keep up to date on all the latest world
news. With that said, what would be your advice or what would you say to
get our generation more involved?
I would say travel as much as you can. When you meet and visit other cultures it opens your mind to seeing the world in a different ways. Not that I have traveled a ton but where I have been I have visited and met some of the most intriguing people. Get out of your comfort zone and learn to embrace what makes us different. None of us are the same for a reason and instead of tear each other down it’s time we enjoy it. If the world was all the same it would be one boring world.
What makes you most angry about today’s society or which topic are you
most passionate about?
Oh, I have so many topics I am passionate about. From animal rights, the environment, equality, and the list could go on. I am not afraid to speak up about topics that deserve to be spoken about. Nothing will change unless we unite and speak up.
I know you will be spending the summer in L.A. for an internship,
what can you tell us about that?
Yes, I am very excited about this. I will be joining the Celebuzz team as an intern. Celebuzz is celebrity based website that takes pop-culture to a whole new level. They have created an incredible platform and I can’t wait to see what the future has in store for them. Celebuzz also runs various celebrity blogs like the Kardashians. This will be an incredible learning experience!
You’re known for posting many inspiring quotes on your Twitter page.
Do you have a favorite?
Ha, yes as many know I am an avid quote poster on Twitter. One of my all time favorites is, “Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that,” said brilliantly by Martin Luther King, Jr.
Can you give us any scoop on an upcoming interview or plans for The
Joey Parker movement?
Yes, I have a few interviews coming up that I am very excited about. I just finished one with 90210’s Shenae Grimes which will be posting soon. She was in Japan during the devastating earthquake and has now created a #SpreadTheHeart movement which I will talk to her about. I also have an interview coming with Victoria Secret Angel Miranda Kerr! Stay tuned for these! J
If The Joey Parker Movement can be remembered for one thing, what
would you want it to be?
To have inspired others to dream big and to believe in themselves. We truly have the power to create our destiny. People often will try to distract us but we have to push through those who don’t believe and prove to them what we are made of.
What advice would you give to people of our generation who might be wanting to start their own “Movement”?
Start now. Whether this “movement” be an actual blog like mine or just changing the way you live. It is time we focus on positivity and live the life that makes us most happy. I challenge you to give more and to focus less on our selves.
I encourage all of you to join The Joey Parker Movement and follow him on Twitter @TheJoeyParker and visit thejoeyparkermovement.com, let’s all join together and help him in helping make his world a better place.