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Entertaining And Inspiring News In The Atlanta Community
The Boys & Girls Club of Metro Atlanta (BGCMA) hosted their annual Youth of the Year gala which is the organization’s highest honor given among teenagers.
The event, which took place on Nov. 11, gave recognition to Elias Dennis whose a member of the Flint River Community Center.
This year’s theme was “A Million Moments” and hosted by the legendary and Emmy-Award-winning journalist, Monica Pearson.
NBA icon Shaquille O’Neal made an appearance given his affiliation with the organization stemming from his childhood.
He’s been a longstanding member of the Henry County Club and a contributor. O’Neal donated $1 million earlier this year to the new building named after him, per Black Enterprise.
Grammy-nominated artist MAJOR known for his hit song, “Why I Love You,” performed with assistance from the BGCMA’s youth choir.
Now, About Mr. Dennis And The Honor He Received
The 17-year-old junior is a student at Elite Scholars Academy with dual enrollment at Clayton State University. With youth comes aspirations and Dennis is certainly not without his own. With his early interest in veterinarian medicine and hopes to own clinics servicing the needs of animals, he was selected as an intern for Banfield’s Next Veterinarian program.
After he completed his initiatives, Denis not only was hired as an assistant but became a club member giving him more hands-on access to his dreams through site visitation and working as a counselor at Camp Kiwanis located in Danielsville, Georgia.
When asked about his experience and the impact the program had on him, the teen said,
“The Club is important to me because it helped me become part of a new family and friend group in my community.”
David Jernigan, BGCMA’s President, and CEO believes in Dennis’ ability to shine a light on the current generation of young adults,
“We are so proud of all of our candidates and excited to name Elias as our 2022-2023 Youth of the Year,” Jernigan said. “It gives me such hope to see kids and teens like Elias with a strong vision toward the future using their voice to strengthen their communities and the world.”
To learn more about the 20 inspiring teens who participated in this year’s Youth of the Year competition and the organization’s character & leadership development programs, visit www.bgcma.org/youth-of-the-year-2022.