On Wednesday, April 27, 2016 we celebrated the fourth annual Youth of the Year Dinner, hosted at Pier 60 at Chelsea Piers. Over 600 guests celebrated the success of four of our Clubhouse youth who have demonstrated a consistent dedication to their education and is the premier national recognition program for Boys & Girls Club members.
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What is Youth of the Year?
The evening celebrates the success of those youth who have demonstrated a consistent dedication to their education and is the premier national recognition program for Boys & Girls Club members. The program promotes service to the Club, community and family, academic success, strong moral character, and life goals.
Champion of Youth Honoree: Frank Fortino
Frank Fortino, President and CEO of Metropolis Group, Inc., has been in the business of “building businesses” for over 30 years. Frank is also active in several professional organizations such as The 200 Club, the New York Coalition of Code Consultants, and The Metropolitan Business Network. As a dedicated Madison Board of Trustees Member, Frank works tirelessly to advocate on behalf of our members as an outstanding businessman and industry leader. (Read more here)
Champion of Youth Honoree: Peter Serpico
Peter Serpico is the Principal, CEO of Omnibuild a leader mid-sized construction management firm in New York City. Prior to being appointed as CEO of Omnibuild upon their purchase of Cava Construction, Peter led Cava to unparalleled success, experiencing more than 500 percent growth from 2010-2014, landing it on the Inc. 5000 list of America’s Fastest Growing Companies. From 2004-2014, Peter led a team that built more than two million square feet of new commercial and residential high-rise space, specializing in hospitality and multi-tenant buildings. Peter is a dedicated friend of Madison’s and provides unparalleled insight into the communities we serve. (Read more here)
Keynote Speaker: Carrie Schwab-Pomerantz
Carrie Schwab-Pomerantz is Board Chair and President of Charles Schwab Foundation, and Senior Vice President at Charles Schwab & Co., Inc. She is a leading advocate for financial literacy and one of the nation’s most trusted sources for financial advice. Under her leadership, Charles Schwab Foundation created Money Matters: Make it Count, a financial literacy program designed specifically for Boys & Girls Club members to help them master basic money management skills and break down the barriers of investing. She has served two White House administrations advising on financial capability policy, and she is a syndicated columnist and author of two books including, The Charles Schwab Guide to Finances After Fifty. Charles Schwab & Co. has been a proud Youth of the Year Superhero sponsor for the past four years and has empowered thousands of New York City’s most underserved children to step into success. (Read more here)
Master of Ceremonies: Cheryl Wills
Cheryl Wills is an award winning anchor and senior reporter for Time Warner Cable's Flagship national news network New York One News, traveling around the globe covering breaking news stories. Cheryl is also an acclaimed author of two books, “Die Free: A Heroic Family Tale” and “The Emancipation of Grandpa Sandy Wills. As an active leader, role model, and author for more than 25 years, Cheryl works tirelessly to educate people about topics that pertain to our children at Madison, including slavery, equal rights, and emancipation. (Read more here)
Meet our 2016 Youth of the Year!
Chassidy David, Thomas S. Murphy Clubhouse
Member: 3 years
School: Julia Richman High School
Future plans: Filmmaker
“My experience at Madison has been nothing short of a blessing. I have grown so much because of the countless opportunities and programs that were open to me. It is at the Club where I am able to forget about any troubles and receive all the love, encouragement, and support I need. To be a member of the Club is truly an opportunity to be a part of greatness.”
Joel E. Smilow Clubhouse
Member: 12 years
School: East Bronx Academy for the Future
Future plans: Business Lawyer
“The Club has always been a home away from home for me. I have met many friends who have become like family and mentors to whom I can always turn for guidance. They have helped me to face so many of life’s challenges and have empowered me to navigate through the various obstacles that have stood in my path. Through my experiences at the Club, I’ve learned the true measure of my own strength. I now know that there is absolutely nothing that can hold me back from reaching success in life.”
Daquan Saxon, Columbus Clubhouse
Member: 7 years
School: West Bronx Academy for the Future
Future plans: Forensic Scientist
“At the Club, I learned how to be a mature young man. When I started, I was at a place in my life where I did not know how to deal with a lot of the anger I carried around with me, especially about school. But the staff empowered me to positively channel my feelings and, with their help, I not only got stronger academically, but I became stronger as a person and a leader.”
Navy Yard Clubhouse
Member: 2 years
School: Urban Assembly School of Music & Arts
Future plans: Police Officer
“The staff at Madison always treats me like family and no matter what you go through, they never make you feel different. It is a safe space where I can come to learn and have fun while being surrounded by amazing mentors and best friends. At my Club, I matter. At my Club, I am home.”