Youth of the Year Selections Announced!



(Sturgeon Bay)  For a large space filled with a hundred kids, the community room of the Boys & Girls Club was remarkably hushed. Executive Director Julie Davis explained that this was one of the most important days on the Club calendar. It was time for the announcement of the Youth of the Year for both the elementary and teen age groups. For the younger group, four members were introduced as finalists, and then Jovan Michelsen learned he was the 2018 Elementary Youth of the Year. Moments later, Dan Sallinen was revealed as the 2018 Teen Youth of the Year. Both Jovan and Dan received thunderous applause from their peers for this accomplishment.

“Our Youth of the Year are ambassadors for Boys & Girls Club of Door County,” explained Executive Director Julie Davis. “Jovan and Dan, together with their families, will be our guests at the Stewardship Breakfast in February, at our golf outing in June, and at events throughout the year. They will share their personal Club experiences and why the organization has value in the community.”

Jovan is in 5th grade at Sunrise School, and has been coming to Boys & Girls Club (BGC) almost every day since the start of the 2014 school year. This year, Jovan has enjoyed being a part of the Peninsula Singers Youth Choir every Wednesday afternoon.

Dan is a sophomore at Sturgeon Bay High School, also attending since 2014. As the Teen Center Youth of the Year, Dan will represent the Door County club at the state gathering of teen youth in Green Bay next month.

Throughout the school year, BGC staff members nominate Members of the Month from Kindergarten, Sawyer (1st and 2nd graders), Hatch Center (3rd through 5th grade), and the Teen Center (6th to 12th grade). From that pool of exceptional members, the Youth of the Year candidates list is narrowed to four finalists who are interviewed individually by community members. Panelists this year were Jonathan Hurley from Pro-Products, Ryan Hoernke from Fincantieri Bay Shipbuilding, Amy Goyette with Pinkert Law Firm, and Kevin Grohskopf from Door County Medical Center.  Julie Davis said, “Their questions elicited thoughtful, articulate answers from the finalists, and the panel asked if more than one member could be chosen. Involving our community partners helps members increase their self-confidence and gives business leaders the opportunity to see first-hand what outstanding young people are here at Boys & Girls Club.”

Thanks go to Door County Medical Center for their continuing support of the Stewardship Breakfast.