Now in its 20th year, the Spirit of Youth awards recognize the hard work and efforts of future leaders who utilize this opportunity to share their inspiring and heartwarming stories.
Spirit of Youth awardees. From left to right, Duncan Okitkun, Rylee Mcintosh, Kaylynn Zagyva, Puck Van Dommelen, Isaiah Dunegan-Lain, Rafael Bitanga, Gabe Miller.
Recipients were chosen by the Spirit of Youth Teen Advisory Council. Individual recipients received a college savings scholarship account from the University of Alaska College Savings Plan, while groups selected will receive a grant for their project.
Spirit of Youth Teen Advisory Council. From left to right, Lily Van Alstine, Olive Sponholz-Johnson, Madison Hill, Augustin Kalytiak-Davis, Anna Wen, Sarah Allen, Jasmine Carter, Racquel Micheletto, Maeve Wiley.
Former members of the Spirit of Youth Teen Advisory Council along with one of Spirit of Youth’s founders, Becky Judd! From left to right, Valerie Schleich, Sarah Lewis, Sara Perman, Kelsey Hernandez, Josh Wilson, Ally Beischer, Becky Judd, Andrew Aquino.
Guests and award recipients were welcomed by Lieutenant Governor, Byron Mallott. Families and supporters of the awardees were present as well as community leaders, educators and elected officials.
Lieutenant Governor Byron Mallott gave an inspiring speech about the importance of youth recognition.
In association with the awards, we reconnected with past honorees to find out how recognition influenced them as youth and, later, as adults. Those stories can be found here.
You can make a donation here, it only takes a minute: spiritofyouth.org/donations