Runnels | Independent School, Baton Rouge


Collis Temple III Shares Insights on How To Be Successful in Life


The junior and senior high was excited to welcome former LSU star basketball player, businessman, author, local influencer, and motivational speaker Collis Temple, III to campus on March 26. 
The owner and operator of Collis Temple III & Associates, a Primerica Training Center with more than 500 licensed agents, he was recently elected vice chairman of the LA Board of Regents, and serves on the board of directors for the Knock Knock Children’s Museum and 100 Black Men of Baton Rouge. In 2016, Mr. Temple published his first book, Work Like a Slave, Think Like a Master.  
Before joining Primerica, he was a student-athlete playing basketball at LSU where he earned a bachelor’s degree in general business in three years and completed a master’s degree in sports management. According to LSU’s Sports Information Department, Mr. Temple is believed to be the first Div. I student-athlete to earn undergraduate and graduate degrees and begin work toward earning a PhD while still eligible to play athletics.
His father, Collis Temple, Jr. was the first African American athlete to play basketball at LSU.  He is still number 22 of all-time at LSU for rebounds with 607.  Following in his father's footsteps, Mr. Temple played basketball for the Tigers from 2000-2003, becoming one of fewer than 40 players in LSU sports history to amass more than 1,000 points, playing in two NCAA Tournament teams an NIT team. Upon completing his eligibility, he joined the 2003 NBA Summer League with the Detroit Pistons. Before training camp, he re-injured his surgically repaired right ankle and made the decision not to pursue a career in professional basketball.
In 2003, he joined Primerica and has built an equally impressive career as a businessman. The Baton Rouge Business Report named him a “Top 40 Under 40” when he was just 24. 
Mr. Temple, who told students that he had attended Runnels for preschool and two years of kindergarten, offered insights on how to be successful in life, sharing lessons he learned from his personal life, basketball, and business. He also shared what he called the three common denominators of success – coachability, focus, and work ethic.
To be “coachable,” he told students, means to look for help, accept it, and take action. Staying “focused” on your goals, he explained, is also crucial. “Write down your goals and affirmations and don’t let life (good or bad) distract you.  He also encouraged students to develop a strong work ethic and not to let what people think about them get in the way. “What they think is none of your business,” he added. 
He urged students to give 100 percent in all they do: “How you do anything is how you do everything.”
We sincerely thank Mr. Temple for taking the time to speak with our students and Jr./Sr. High Assistant Principal Dana Schlotterer for arranging his visit.