2014 Washington State Youth of the Year

Justice Lively & Don Wick

Justice Lively, 2014 Washington State Youth of the Year with Don Wick, Boys & Girls Clubs Washington State Association Hall of Fame Inductee

 

JUSTICE LIVELY NAMED WASHINGTON STATE YOUTH OF THE YEAR

It’s been a tremendous year for the Boys & Girls Clubs of Skagit County. Recently, at our Breakfast for GREAT Kids, our supporters learned of the many reasons to celebrate Youth Development and the growth our Clubs have enjoyed over the last year, impacting more than 1,400 youth in our communities.

Wednesday, March 26th was another day to celebrate, and in quite a big way. For the first time in the history of our young organization, a member of the Boys & Girls Clubs of Skagit County was named Washington State Youth of the Year. In a year that saw tremendous growth in candidates from the fifteen organizations represented, our very own Justice Lively earned the honor, and with it, an additional $5,000 in College scholarships.

Justice’s journey began last fall, as each of our four Clubhouses entered the Youth of the Year process. Candidates composed essays, collected letters of recommendation, gained interview skills, and had to develop and deliver a three-minute speech. A significant investment was made in the Youth of the Year program this year, and we have the results of that investment to celebrate in a big way.

Each Clubhouse held a Dinner with Friends in November, with a Club Youth of the Year named that would represent them moving forward. Our four Youth of the Year’s came together for a special retreat held in partnership with organizations from Eastern Washington and Thurston County in Ellensburg in January, providing even more preparation and skill development. In January, Karen Gallardo from Anacortes, Ariana Harting from La Conner, Justice Lively from Mount Vernon, and Madisen Cork from Sedro-Woolley became living testaments to the work conducted at each of their respective Clubs, and each one of them would have been an excellent candidate to represent Skagit County, but only could move forward and that honor was bestowed on Justice.

For three days, Mr. Lively joined peers from other organizations, representing more than 75,000 Boys & Girls Club members across the State, once again going through a significant judging process, while also attending workshops and sessions for personal development and growth. In a packed ballroom at the Bell Harbor Conference Center in Seattle, representatives from Skagit County shrieked with glee as Justice’s name was announced as the Washington State Youth of the Year, making history in the process.

Our Board of Directors and Staff are thrilled to share this moment with you, and thank you for supporting our Clubs and mission: to enable all young people, especially those who need us most, to reach their full potential as productive, caring, responsible citizens. Justice Lively serves as a living outcome of Club programs and the impact they have on youth in our community.

Please join us in celebrating the #GreatFuture of Justice, as he continues on in the Youth of the Year program, not only representing Skagit County, but now all Club members in Washington State.

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DON WICK INDUCTED INTO ALUMNI HALL OF FAME

Justice Lively wasn’t the only honoree from Skagit County at the 2015 Washington State Youth of the Year Gala. Our very own Don Wick, Executive Director of EDASC, was inducted into the Washington State Boys & Girls Clubs Alumni Hall of Fame.

Starting in 5th Grade, and for six years, Don Wick was an avid member of the Ballard Boys Club. Don first encountered the Boys Club through using their sports fields for P.E. Class, and got hooked through the after-school activities. Don says, “We first went to play pool, and it was fun. But the people there made all the difference. The Club was about a lot more than just hanging out. Character, community, and caring were what you learned. It was great.”

It is hard to identify areas in Skagit County that Don hasn’t affected. Sighted at nearly every major community event, his passion & dedication for developing trust and long-lasting impact is widely lauded and appreciated. His work as a Kiwanian, especially, has focused his attention on the youth in the community, enabling them to build better futures, and enjoy greater opportunities in and around the Skagit Valley. Whether he’s helping host & emcee a charity auction, or presenting his Club story for a Boys & Girls Club Annual Breakfast, he strives to provide an example of integrity, hard work, and compassion for all.

We are proud to have Mr. Wick in our community, and to have been a part of our tremendous evening of celebrating the excellence that exists in Skagit County.

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