This past week on my Thursday radio show, “Village Life” on WTBQ/WGHT, I had a series of guests who have been a part of the Warwick Valley Community Center’s Leadership Academy. Henri Prevost, Travis Stella, and Ellie Hanson were on the air to discuss the many initiatives that they’ve been involved with including the Leadership Academy, the Youth Task Force, the Youth Advisory Board, the Warwick Valley Prevention Coalition and the Gay Straight Alliance. The Warwick Community Center has offered these teens a compelling learning and social environment where they’ve developed leadership and life skills.
Henri Prevost was the WVHS Class of 2020 Salutatorian and is headed to college in California this Fall. Henri has been involved with the Community Center for most of his teen years. He was recently honored with the 2020 Youth Bureau Citizenship Award. He is the Youth Representative for the Community Center Board of Directors, past Youth Advisory Board President, and Youth Representative of the Warwick Valley Prevention Coalition. Henri is an extraordinary young man, articulate, informed, and motivated. With the foundation from the Community Center’s leadership programs, he is ready for life’s next great adventure.
I first met Travis Stella when he was part of the Leadership Academy. I’ve watched him mature from a quiet young man to a confident leader. Travis was the 2019 recipient of the Youth Bureau Citizenship Award. He is the current Youth Advisory Board President. Travis has been working with a team of young men and women and Wickham Works on a creative poster initiative promoting the importance of wearing a mask during the pandemic crisis; the posters will be displayed by local businesses. Look for them on the Village’s website and Facebook.
Ellie Hanson is the President of the Gay Straight Alliance and the Community Centers Living Well Program. She is also the Youth Board Representative for the Warwick Valley Community Center Recently. Ellie organized a virtual prom for LGBTQ youth and is working on a Public Service Announcement with the Youth Task Force which will be aired at the Warwick Drive-In on Aug. 13. I first met Ellie when she worked as an assistant to Donna Haley who created, “The Warwick Anthology.” Her energy and enthusiasm, combined with true leadership skills, set her apart; she is a remarkable young woman.
To think that with little fanfare, in a quiet corner of our village, leaders are being shaped – of course now via Zoom! Henri, Travis, and Ellie represent some of the best and brightest of our youth. They have acquired skills that impact their community, they are the promise for the future. The Youth Programs that the Warwick Community Center have developed are outstanding examples of youth engagement and development. ‘Thank You’ to Director Karen Thomas and the Warwick Valley Community Center’s Board of Directors for these exceptional programs.
Missing the Summer Concert Series? The Village of Warwick, with help from the Warwick Historical Society, will be streaming a Facebook Live Concert this coming Sat., Aug. 15 at 7 p.m. The featured artist will be the much-loved Celtic inspired group, “Emish.” Tune into the Village of Warwick’s Facebook page, Warwick Summer Concert Facebook page or the Warwick Valley Historical Society’s Facebook page – sit back and enjoy.
The next Village Board meeting will take place on Mon., Aug. 17 at 7:30 p.m. at Village Hall, located at 77 Main St., and will be held through Zoom videoconference and may be viewed live by the public on the Village’s Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/VillageofWarwick.