NFL players had the opportunity to participate in the NFL’s annual My Cause, My Cleats campaign during a designated home game between Weeks 13-15 of 2018. Tartt and his teammates represented their respective causes with custom-designed cleats in an effort to raise awareness and funding. The Epilepsy Foundation of Northern California is dedicated to providing information, resources, and support to the over 180,000 Northern Californians living with epilepsy.
The 49ers joined forces with Martha’s Kitchen of San Jose as part of their Community Tuesday kickoff event in September of 2018. Tartt and teammates took part in the event by serving dinner to nearly 200 residents in need, refilling beverages and bussing tables. Both the 49ers and Levi’s Stadium partner with Martha’s Kitchen throughout the year by donating excess food after stadium events. Martha’s Kitchen’s mission is to “feed the hungry with dignity, no questions asked, no judgements made.”
While visiting his hometown of Mobile during his youth football camp in July of 2016, Tartt was given the key to the city. “If anybody would have told me I would be getting a key to the city of Mobile, I’d have thought they were crazy. It’s a wonderful feeling.”
During all Week 13 games in 2017, NFL players had the chance to share the causes that are important to them as part of the NFL’s My Cause, My Cleats campaign. The initiative was a culmination of collaborative work between the NFL and players across the league. Tartt chose NorCal Epilepsy Foundation as his My Cause, My Cleats initiative. Tartt was inspired by his close friend and manager whose daughter, Aria, was diagnosed with Epilepsy at four months old. No medicine was helping and Aria would have up to 100 seizures a day. But after brain surgery where a piece of her brain was removed, she is now seizure free. “I want to raise awareness for Epilepsy, a cause folks know little about,” said Tartt. “My message to those affected by the disease: Stay strong and know that you are not in this fight alone!”
Tartt provided 75 backpacks full of school supplies to 7th graders at Scarborough Model Middle School of Mobile in preparation for the upcoming school year. Said Tartt, “I met with the Mayor and his team and they decided that this would be the best thing to do. Every year, I’m just trying to do something to give back to my community. It was great to see how happy the kids were.”
Drafted by the 49ers in the second round of the 2015 NFL Draft, Tartt reunited with best friend and former high school teammate DB Jimmie Ward. Both products of Davidson High School in Mobile, AL, the pair won the Class 6A Region 1 football championship as the school’s starting safeties in 2009.
In April of 2018, Tartt and his teammates attended the eighth annual Prom at UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospital San Francisco in Mission Bay, with more than 200 teen patients and their friends. Patients and 49ers players enjoyed a fun-filled “Vintage Circus” prom with photo booths, music, dancing, dining and more. This special evening allowed patients to participate in a milestone that they may miss as a result of sickness.
A two-time All-American and All-Southern Conference selection, Tartt was the first player in Samford school history to be invited to play in the Reese’s Senior Bowl. Just the sixth player selected in the NFL draft in school history, Jaquiski holds the distinction of being the first player drafted in the second round or higher from Samford University.
Tartt’s young football career has been heavily influenced by his family. He played his first year of organized football in 2009 at Davidson HS in Mobile, AL, to honor his grandfather, Alfred Lewis, who passed away during the summer before his senior year. “The football coaches and my friends wanted me to come out and play, and he really wanted me to play. I really wanted to play again ever since he passed away, so I do this in his memory.” Additionally, Jaquiski chose to attend Samford University at the urging of his mother, a traveling nurse who wanted to go there herself because of their pharmacy program.