- Business Advocacy
At the Youth of the Year Celebration at the Grapevine Arbor in San Gabriel, a panel of judges from the community name Angel Silva as Youth of the Year 2020. The Youth of the Year title is a prestigious honor bestowed upon an exemplary young person in recognition of leadership, service, academic excellence, and dedication to live a healthy lifestyle.
Now in its 73rd year, the national Youth of the Year program by Boys & Girls Clubs of America honors young people on their paths to great futures and encourages all kids to lead, succeed, and inspire. Angel’s next step in his journey will to become one of two nominees for Los Angeles County at the Youth of the Year event on Friday, April 3, at the Skirball Cultural Center hosted by the Los Angeles Alliance for Boys & Girls Clubs.
“For over 10 years, Angel has been an exemplary club member who continues to persevere in spite of challenges, grow as a person, and be a role model for all of our members,” said JR Dzubak, chief executive officer of Boys & Girls Clubs of West San Gabriel Valley. “We could not be prouder of him as he represents the club and embarks on his journey to be a role model and inspiration for many more youth.”
The Youth of the Year Celebration was presented by Hot Topic Foundation. Eighteen nominees gave their speeches to a panel of judges made up of community partners and leaders such as USC Civic Engagement, Cathay Bank, Los Angeles Dodgers Foundation, Regional Chamber of Commerce San Gabriel Valley, and Panda Restaurant Group. The winner was announced by Angels Baseball Pitcher Noe Ramirez and received a $2,500 college scholarship from board member Hy Ngo, M.D.
Angel, age 17, is a senior at Mark Keppel High School and a very outgoing member of the Monterey Park site which he has been attending for 10 years since 2010. In his childhood, he faced many uncertainties, often having to move to different cities, which made it difficult to form stable friendships. When his family finally settled in Monterey Park, he joined the Boys & Girls Club at 8 years old. Shortly after joining, it was discovered that he had learning disabilities that he worked very hard to overcome with the support of the club staff.
He has since excelled in his studies, such as English, and has come out of his shell and joined advanced drama classes and his school’s cheer team. Angel has also been able to participate in many trips with the club, including visiting Taiwan and Mt. Shasta and touring colleges in San Francisco. Angel hopes to go to college and major in special education, study Chicano history, and continue to pursue acting.
About the Boys & Girls Clubs of West San Gabriel Valley
Founded in 1972, Boys and Girls Clubs of West San Gabriel Valley, www.wsgvbgc.org, delivers fun and educational programs each year to over 7,000 youth of Los Angeles County across six club sites: Monterey Park, La Puente, Baldwin Park, and in the public housing sites of Ramona Gardens, Estrada Courts, and William Mead. The clubs provide key programs for academic success, leadership development, and healthy lifestyles. In addition, we offer unique programming for our community including STEM Sailing, Brent’s Club, College Bound, and a licensed Early Learning Center. The clubs’ mission is to enable all young people, especially those who need them most, to reach their full potential as productive, caring, and responsible citizens.