June 20th, 2012
This Week in Orange County 6-20-12
Orange County Executive Edward Diana
GOSHEN - Recently, I had the pleasure of joining with the Orange County Youth Bureau to host the 30th annual Orange County Executive’s Youth Awards luncheon. I attend a lot of luncheons throughout the year and this is always one of my favorites. To meet the young people, hear their stories, and meet their families and teachers is always inspiring.
More than 400 special guests were on hand to recognize the accomplishments and successes of our County’s young people at this year’s luncheon. The guests represented 14 Orange County school districts, 12 not-for-profits, two faith-based organizations, and six county departments. Awards were presented to 69 deserving youth and 31 adults who go above and beyond in their support of our County’s young people. Students were recognized for accomplishments including success in the face of adversity, commitment to community service, overcoming challenges, promoting a healthy lifestyle, and outstanding leadership and citizenship.
Of course this luncheon would not be so successful each year were it not for the leadership and guidance provided by our outstanding Youth Bureau Director Carol Chichester, the Youth Bureau team, and the event and awards committees. We are very fortunate here in Orange County to have one of the finest youth bureau programs in New York State and even the nation. And I’m not the only one to think that. For the second year in a row, Orange County has been named one of America’s 100 Best Communities for Young People by America’s Promise Alliance, an organization founded by General Colin Powell. This award recognizes Orange County’s commitment to young people and the collaborations with community partners that are necessary to keep our students in school and improve graduation rates. Carol, her team, and the relationships they have developed were instrumental to our County receiving this prestigious award.
I would be remiss if I did not also take the time to thank the many teachers, aides, volunteers, administrators, service providers, and others who work so hard to support our youth and provide them with the tools and skills they need for a successful future. Your commitment to our young people is critical.
As the school year comes to a close, I want to congratulate all of this year’s graduates. And to all students, I offer this reminder - study hard and make smart choices. Education is key to a bright future. It opens doors and provides a foundation for success.
To all of our teachers and students, best wishes for a safe and happy summer!
Until next week, I wish you good health and happiness.