I met Keysi at my first tango lesson at Dartmouth.  He was the instructor, wearing what to me seemed like unconventional instructional attire: a grey suit and tie, with a pager at the belt. Then someone informed me that he was the associate director of Safety & Security. While this information helped explain the mix of business clothes and tango shoes, it really just added a new surprise: Safety & Security and tango – an interesting mix. Two years later, I’ve had the privilege of getting to know Keysi more personally through our work together on an Alternative Spring Break (ASB) trip to the Dominican Republic. The surprises have kept on coming. Keysi couldn’t make it to our meeting one weekend because he was traveling to New York for the Dominican book fair. He is a published writer and poet. As his narrative shows, his writing, which is in Spanish, is what connects him to his home culture and language. He’s also a carpenter working on projects in the Dominican Republic, as well as in the United States. One weekend he invited my ASB co-leader and me to the opening ceremony of the new Japanese garden-style rainbow bridge that he had built in his backyard, not too far from the Japanese archway that he had finished previously. A Dominican with a Japanese backyard in New Hampshire – again, a fascinating mix. This sense of intrigue, in addition to Keysi’s great sense of humor, wit, and kind heart, made me eager to interview him. As I’ve discovered more about his life through the following narrative, I’ve realized how amazing and humble the human being is behind his smile and Indiana Jones hat. In his own words, “given my history and where I’ve come from, I’ve come a long ways,” but that I believe that is an understatement of his accomplishments. He lives in a back and forth world between the Dominican Republic and the United States, but he thinks of himself and carries out stewardship as “an earthling, a citizen of the globe, a citizen of planet Earth.”

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