9-Year-Old Gets His Wish and Becomes CEO for a Day: 'I Always Wanted to be a CEO'

Playing Nine-Year-Old Boy with Sickle Cell Anemia Became Make-A-Wish CEO for a Day

It was another dream come true for an Ohio 9-year-old, who became a CEO of the Make-A-Wish Foundation for a day.

Adrian McKinney II was first granted a wish by the organization last summer — an all-expenses paid trip to Hawaii with his family — as he recovered from a bone marrow transplant to fight his sickle cell anemia. 

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After the trip, when Adrian attended the Make-A-Wish Gala and met the CEO of the Make-a-Wish Foundation of Ohio, Kentucky and Indiana, Doug Kelly, another one his dreams was realized.

“I mean I always wanted to be a CEO,” Adrian told InsideEdition.com. “When I met him, he said, ‘Have you been thinking about the future for your wish?’ I said, ‘Yes. I want your job.’”

Kelly told Adrian he could have his job for a day.

“He took out his business card and crossed out his name and wrote my name there. It was pretty amazing,” Adrian said.

And on July 10, Kelly made good on his promise. Adrian was hired.

Adrian went into the office, gave a speech and even leading a staff meeting. He said the job really meant something to him.

“It [was] more personal because Make-A-Wish helps people through a time when I really felt I was boxed in,” Adrian said.

Adrian’s mom, Torie McKinney, said she’d extremely grateful that her son received the opportunity for another one of his wishes to come true.

“For the first five years of his life, it was just constant worry, anxiety, just living on edge of just worry, of something going wrong, of him getting really sick,” McKinney said. “Just to be relieved, [and have] Make-A-Wish come and make his wish come true, not only one time, but two times, we’re just grateful.

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Employees at Make-A-Wish said Adrian may just give Kelly a run for his money.

“It was definitely the best of the 365 days out of the year,” Ali Deters, Development Associate at the organization said. “We like to joke in our office. We kept telling Doug our CEO because he was maybe going to get his job taken much faster than he anticipated.”

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