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Boys and Girls Club names Youth of the Year finalists

THE BOYS & GIRLS CLUB of Sonoma Valley named Francisco Chavez, Itzel Macedonio, Marlen Rojas and Carmelita Bastress as finalists for its Youth of the Year.

THE BOYS & GIRLS CLUB of Sonoma Valley named Francisco Chavez, Itzel Macedonio, Marlen Rojas and Carmelita Bastress as finalists for its Youth of the Year.

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The Boys & Girls Club of Sonoma Valley named the four finalists who will compete in the Youth of the Year competition.

Youth of the Year is the premier recognition program for Boys & Girls Club members, promoting service to club, community and family, academic success, strong moral character, life goals and poise and public speaking ability.

The program is used as a year-round tool for fostering young people’s character, personal growth and leadership qualities.

The four finalists are Francisco Chavez, Itzel Macedonio, Marlen Rojas and Carmelita Bastress.

Chavez is in his senior year at Sonoma Valley High School and has been a Boys & Girls Club member since second grade. He was recognized as a Youth of the Year candidate for his positive attitude and strong work ethic. He sets a great example by volunteering his time to do one-on-one tutoring with younger members, all while participating in a number of programs including College Bound and Career Launch. Chavez has become a leader and a valued member of the Boys & Girls Club.

Macedonio is a senior at Sonoma Valley High School and has been a Boys & Girls Club member since the third grade. Macedonio was selected as a Youth of the Year candidate because she is one of the hardest working and most energetic members at the Boys & Girls Club. This past summer, Macedonio held a summer internship at a hospital, volunteered with Keystone and various special events, and was a consistent member of the College Bound program. Staff, adult volunteers and members of all ages admire and respect Macedonio for everything she does for the club and her community.

Rojas is a junior at Sonoma Valley High School and has been a Boys & Girls Club member since the third grade. Over the years, Rojas has shown her enthusiasm for the club by bringing many new friends with her to join the club, College Bound and the Keystone Club. Led by Rojas, the Keystone Club (the community service and leadership club for high school students) has planned and taken part in some great events at the club and in the community.Rojas consistently comes to the club with a positive attitude and a smile on her face. She is a wonderful role model for younger members.

Bastress is a senior at Sonoma Valley High School and has been a Boys & Girls Club member since her freshman year. Acting as a leading officer in Keystone, Bastress has helped organize a book drive for the Reading Buddies program and an Olympic Day for the entire club. Bastress is a rock climbing camp volunteer and a member of College Bound. Her smile and positive attitude is infectious and the club is proud to count Bastress as a member.

The community is invited to attend the Youth of the Year reception and celebration at 6:30 p.m. on Thursday, Nov. 21.

The event is sponsored by the August Sebastiani Foundation.