DJ Reader. Photo provided


Cincinnati Bengals defensive tackle DJ Reader and his A Son Never Forgets Foundation are hosting a back-to-school event in his adopted hometown of Cincinnati.

At Shroder High School, 5030 Duck Creek Road, on Tuesday, Aug. 15 from 4:30 to 7:30 p.m., Reader will visit with students and parents.

The back-to-school event includes free dental screenings, health screenings, school supplies and food, as well as onsite job interviews with Chick-fil-A at Oakley Station.

Shroder High School and Reader are holding a ribbon-cutting for the establishment of the Reader Resource Room, named in honor of his father, David Vernon Reader Sr. The goal of the room is to provide students, regardless of their circumstances, with vital resources and information to support their success in school.

The foundation will purchase shelving, organize inventory and formulate communication and distribution plans for the school’s resource team or resource room manager. Local artist Brent Billingsley is painting a mural of Reader in the room. This is the first Reader Resource Room in the country, with each subsequent one to be tailored to meet the unique needs of the school.

“My parents always instilled in me the importance of hard work and giving back to the community,” said Reader. “I want to leverage my platform to honor my father and help those in need in my adopted hometown through a variety of programs that will make their lives better.”

Reader launched his foundation to promote health and wellness by providing information, services, resources and activities to impact and support sustainable communities. In June 2022, Reader purchased three lots to build low-cost homes in Greensboro, North Carolina. He was inspired to do community work by his father, David, who died of kidney disease in 2014. Reader launched his foundation after he was drafted into the NFL.

Reader just completed his seventh NFL season. Raised in Greensboro, he played collegiately at Clemson University. After graduating in only three years, he was selected by the Houston Texans in the 2016 NFL draft. Recognized as one the league’s best defensive tackles, Reader has been honored multiple times for his community service and philanthropic efforts.

He received the prestigious President’s Lifetime Achievement Volunteer Service Award in 2022. In 2021, he received the Ed Block Courage Award as voted on by his teammates for his courage and inspiration throughout the season, being a role model for overcoming adversity and serving the community. In 2019, he won the Spirit of the Bull Award for his impact on and off the field by the Texans, as well as being nominated for the Walter Payton NFL Man of the Year.

For more information about Reader and the A Son Never Forgets Foundation, visit

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