BGCBI Honor Teens, Community Supporters at Annual Event
Last Friday, the Boys & Girls Club of the Big Island celebrated its 2016 Youth of the Year Event, which honored two teens and a host of community supporters.
Each year, the Boys & Girls Club of America presents the Youth of the Year program to recognize Club members. The program promotes and celebrates service to the Club, community and family, academic performance, moral character, life goals, and poise and public speaking ability.
The BGCBI 2016 Youth of the Year award went to 14-year-old Jordyn Alexandra Brooks-Mathew from the Pahoa Club.
Brooke-Matthew will now compete for the State of Hawai’i Youth of the Year.
Eighteen-year-old Nicholas Miguel from the Hilo Club is the BGCBI runner up.
The Youth of the Year event also honored community supporters who have been instrumental in BGCBI’s success:
Newton J. Chu Esq. – Honoree of the Year
Chu Esq. is an attorney and director at Torkildson, Katz, Moore, Hetherington & Harris and a Board Member Emeritus. Active in many East Hawai’i community service organizations, Newton served as the indispensable Board Secretary at a time of significant transition for the Club. His sense of humor and grace under fire as Master of Ceremonies has also enlivened many BGCBI events through the years.
Puna Lions Club and Waiakea Lions Club – Champions for Youth
The Puna Lions Club and Waiakea Lions Club have supported BGCBI by providing mentoring, equipment, funds, and many hours of skilled labor to improve and upkeep BGCBI Club locations around the island.
The Trustees of the Hilo Boarding School – Foundation Award
The “Hilo Boys Club” started as a program of the Hilo Boarding School Trust in 1952. In the years since, the trustees of the Hilo Boarding School have remained strong supporters of the Boys & Girls Club movement and Big Island youth. This special award is in recognition of the Trustees’ steadfast commitment to supporting Big Island youth and their long relationship with the Boys & Girls Club of the Big Island.
Dolly Kailiawa, Pahala Club Director – 10 Years of Service Award
A life-long supporter and advocate for youth and her community, Dolly Kailiawa joined the Boys & Girls Club of the Big Island’s team as a Youth Development Specialist in 2006. In the time since, she became the Pahala Club Director and now serves as Club Director for both the Pahala Club and the Ocean View outreach site. Dolly is a strong leader in the Club and the Ka`u community, as demonstrated by the partnerships she has built and the staff and youth she has mentored.
Zavi Brees-Saunders, BGCBI Chief Executive Officer
Ms. Brees-Saunders was given an award by the Board of Directors for leadership and service to the youth of the Big Island. The Board expressed their gratitude to her for leading the organization during a time of transition.