February 2017 Youth of the Month Announcements

The Boys & Girls Clubs of Wichita Falls is proud to announce January Youths of the Month. Brian Collier ,of the Southeast Branch, is the Kiwanis Club of Wichita Falls Youth of the Month. McKenzy Elliott, of the Southwest Branch, is the Optimist Club of Wichita Falls Youth of the Month. Tatum Roman, of the Southwest Branch, is the Rotary Club of Wichita Falls Youth of the Month.

The Kiwanis Club of Wichita Falls sponsors 6-8 year olds. Optimist of Wichita Falls sponsors 9-11 year olds. Rotary Club of Wichita Falls sponsors 12-18 year olds.

Interviewers, Jackie Lebow, Rotary Club of Wichita Falls, and Jeff Pendley, Optimist Club of Wichita Falls, considered the following categories while selecting the City Wide Youths of the Month:

  • Home & Family involvement
  • Community contributions
  • Academic achievements
  • Boys & Girls Club participation
  • Spiritual values

Nominees for the Kiwanis Division included:

  • De’nisha King, Rosewood Branch
  • J’Quan Carroll Northeast Branch
  • Mikedra Hansboro, Northwest Branch
  • Julius Whitley, Southwest Branch
  • Brian Collier, Southeast Branch
  • Gabriel Brown, Central Branch

Nominees for the Optimist Division included:

  • Dominic King, Rosewood Branch
  • Willie Thomas, Northeast Branch
  • Frank Anderson, Northwest Branch
  • McKenzy Elliott, Southwest Branch
  • Jamyiah McGee, Southeast Branch
  • Lexie Arredondo Central Branch

Nominees for the Rotary Division included:

  • John Weathersby, Rosewood Branch
  • No candidate, Northeast Branch
  • Kianna Triggs, Northwest Branch
  • Tatum Roman Southwest Branch
  • Blake Larsen, Southeast Branch
  • No candidate,  Central Branch

Generous sponsors include:  Taco Casa and Times/Record News


Brian is the 7-year-old son of Belen Collier. He attends the Southeast Branch Club where Ms. Joycelyn Downing is Club Director.

Brian has one older sister. He takes part at home by keeping his room organized as well as helping around the rest of the house. Brian also helps in the kitchen with meal preparations and does his part with outside yard work. He is responsible for the pet care and taking out the trash.

As a 2nd grader at Fain Elementary, Brian is a great student with an A average. He really enjoys his math class and believes school is important because “it is where you learn”.

The Boys & Girls Club affords Brian with many opportunities to have fun. He plays in Boys & Girls Club Athletic League Football and Basketball. He also enjoys the Fine Arts and Computer Tech Programs in the Learning Center. Additionally, he takes advantage of Power Hour Homework Help, Triple Play Healthy Habits, and taking part in the Gym Challenges Program.

Club Director Joycelyn Downing said, “Brian follows directions and has never caused problems in the Club!”


McKenzy is the 11-year-old daughter of Travis and Rachel Elliott. She has a 13-year-old sister and an 18-year-old brother. McKenzy helps around the house and keeps her room clean. She has been known to wash dishes after meals and do her own laundry! McKenzy also takes out the trash and does her part in caring for the family pet.

As a 5th grade student at Cunningham, McKenzy says math is her favorite subject. She is a member of the “Cougar News Crew”. McKenzy believes school is important because it will help her get a better job someday.

McKenzy’s home Club is the Southwest Branch where Ms. Tori Smith is Club Director. She is a six-year veteran of the Southwest Boys & Girls Club. During her time at the Club she has been very active in various areas in and out of the Club. McKenzy is a participant in the Club’s Basketball League and is a Jr. Staffer. As a Jr. Staffer, she volunteers as a greeter at the front desk and helps with the Kids Café. She does her part in keeping the Club clean. She enjoys Arts and Crafts, Photography, and Club Tech in the Learning Center and has also actively participated in Power Hour Homework help and Triple Play Healthy Habits!

McKenzy is very ‘community involved’ through her membership in the Torch Club. She has taken part in community park clean-ups, helping with the Meals on Wheels Program, and visited nursing home residents.

Director Ms. Tori Smith said, “McKenzy is responsible, smart, and active!”


Tatum is a member of the Southwest Branch of the Boys & Girls Club where Ms. Tori Smith is the Club Director. Tatum is the grandson of Monte Carroll and son of Mary Roman. He has a twin brother.

Tatum is an 11th grader at Rider and carries a 3.5 GPA. His favorite subject is Math. He enjoys playing violin in the school orchestra. Tatum is also plays soccer and participates in the Track and Field Cross Country team. He believes school is important because “it provides a way to learn and achieve greater things in life”.

Tatum has been a member of First Christian Church for the past seven years where he has participated in several mission trips. He has also traditionally participated in Teens Make a Difference Day Events and been a participant in the Hotter ‘n Hell Community Bicycle Race.

Tatum has been attending Southwest since 2009 and has experience in all areas of the Club. Some of his favorite programs are Arts & Crafts, Junior Staff, and Passport to Manhood. He is currently serving as Vice President to the Keystone Club and was previously been selected as a Youth of the Month.

Club Director Tori Smith said, “Tatum has developed into quite a leader learning that hard work and helpfulness pays off”.

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About Craig Buckmore

I started with the Boys & Girls Clubs of Wichita Falls in November of 2000. At the time I had not worked for a non-profit and the organization had no formal IT plan. During my time with the organization, I have learned a lot about the non-profit sector and created a formal plan and direction for the organization. I have been working to create new ways to keep the members engaged with the organization leveraging existing and in some cases technology under development all while keeping costs as low as possible.

I enjoy working with all aspects of technology from hardware, software, programming, team building, training, professional networking, and systems engineering. I am not a specialist in any one discipline but focus on finding or building technologies to further the organization while keeping the larger picture in mind. To that end, I never see an IT system as static but ever evolving and always in need of improvement.