By Rory O’Sullivan, Staff Writer
Cajon High School scholar athlete Khari Bush wants to let the world know he’s got next
As far back as Khari Bush can remember, he has had big dreams. These dreams cannot be contained inside one person, in one house, in one city. He aspires to be the next ‘everything’ and he won’t be confined to any box.
He didn’t want to be just another ball player while playing point guard at Cajon High School serving as the team’s heart and soul. But he also isn’t a dumb jock. He graduated in the top five percent of his school in GPA and served as a member of Cajon’s Science Club and Black Student Union.
Bush refused to become a self-absorbed teenager, volunteering for the Storehouse of Blessing ministry, feeding the homeless and serving in the sound ministry at his church, Immanuel Praise Fellowship.
“Expect big things from me,” said Bush.
This fall, Bush will be leaving to attend Morehouse College. He said he is following the footsteps of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and activist and entertainers, Samuel L. Jackson and Spike Lee.
“I always knew I was going to college since I was like two. I’ve always known,” recalls Bush.
Bush wants to start the next Fortune 500 company and has already worked for his uncle’s catering business, interned for Eric Kades founder of marketing firm Jet Spring and has participated in the Black Future Leaders program.
“Khari will accomplish whatever he sets his mind to,” said Kades.
Bush, the youngest son of Riverside City College Vice President, Edward C. Bush who earned his Ph.D from Claremont Graduate University and Jenise Bush who is a Rialto Middle School counselor and University of La Verne doctoral candidate, has social justice in his blood. Bush’s great grandmother, Annie Catherine Phelums, was a NAACP official who worked closely with civil-rights pioneer Medgar Evers, hosted Freedom Bus riders and stood courageously against the forces of segregation in her native Mississippi.
“He has always understood the expectations we had for him,” said his mother, Jenise.
His parents have also instilled in him the knowledge that it is not enough for him to do well and move away never helping the rest of his community. His father was adamant that he attend public school in San Bernardino so he could understand the plight his community still faces and keep him humble.
“He went to Rio Vista and he went to Palm, this is his community,” said Jenise.
She said there is “so much negativity about Black males and San Bernardino,” and she expects Khari to come back home and demonstrate to other young Black males in the area that they can be successful and be positive members of their community.
“My mom and dad, gave me the extra motivation of doing well in life,” states Khari.
His parents never considered keeping him away from the personal, public and professional expectations of his community. As a member of an activist family who has made education, culture, and social activism central to its existence in Mississippi and California, they expect that tradition to continue.
Bush has excelled socially and academically, made evident with accolades and scholarships awarded in April at the annual Social Lites, Incorporated Beautillion Ball in Highland, where Khari was crowned Sir Knight and was among seven young men awarded $20,000 collectively. In May at the Links Inc., Scholarship Breakfast, held in Ontario, he received the highest scholarship award of $10,000.
“I know I have to do super-super good and make sure I make my family and community proud. That’s who raised me that’s where I come from.”