July 2013 Youth of the Month Announcements

The Boys & Girls Clubs of Wichita Falls is proud to announce July Youths of the Month. McKenzy Elliott, of the Southwest Branch, is the Kiwanis Club of Wichita Falls Youth of the Month. Dominique Horton, from the Southeast Branch, is the Optimist Club of Wichita Falls Youth of the Month. Laron Arias, representing the Southwest Branch, is the Rotary Club of Wichita Falls Youth of the Month.

Service clubs sponsor three age divisions. 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 Dwayne Bivona (Rotary Club of Wichita Falls) and Joe Emanuel (Optimist Club of Wichita Falls) considered the following attributes 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:

  • Jordon Mitchell, Rosewood Branch
  • Caylia Wesley, Northeast Branch
  • Keiron Singleton, Northwest Branch
  • Javier Ortiz, Central Branch
  • Manuel Galvaldon III, Southeast Branch
  • McKenzy Elliott, Southwest Branch

Nominees for the Optimist Division included:

  • K’Various Jones, Rosewood Branch
  • Anighus Nash, Northeast Branch
  • Aniyah Jones, Northwest Branch
  • Abigail Ruddy, Central Branch
  • Dominique Horton, Southeast Branch
  • Jordan Ellingson, Southwest Branch

Nominees for the Rotary Division included:

  • Asan Jones, Rosewood Branch
  • Jarius Hicks, Northeast Branch
  • Elliott Murphy, Northwest Branch
  • Jakob Malcom, Southeast Branch
  • Laron Arias, Southwest Branch
Generous sponsors include: Chicken Express, Taco Casa and Times/Record News

is the 7 year old daughter of Travis and Rachel Elliott. She attends the Southwest Branch where Ms. Tori Smith is the Club Director.

McKenzy has two sisters and four brothers. She helps with many household chores including helping maintain the cleanliness of the house, keeping her room straightened up, loading the dishwasher after meals, and taking out the trash. She loves helping her dad mow and rake the lawn! McKenzy also helps care for the families tow dogs by feeding, watering, and keeping the yard cleaned up from there messes.

McKenzy is a second grade student at Cunningham Elementary and keeps a straight A report card. Her favorite class is math and feels that school is important “so you can get better at things”.

McKenzy has been attending the Southwest Branch for the past two years. She has plenty of club experience in all program areas. She especially enjoys working in the Learning Center where she does Fine Arts, Photography Program, Power Hour, Reading Program, and Club Tech on the computers. She has earned the distinction of being one of only two 7 year olds allow behind the front desk as a Junior Staffer!

Branch Director Tori Smith said, “McKenzy is a very smart seven year old who enjoys sharing smiles with others!”

Dominique_Horton_2013Dominique Horton
is the 10 year old son of Christopher and Tiffany Horton. He attends the Southeast Branch of the Boys & Girls Club where Mrs. Charlene Vomastek is Director.

Dominique shares household responsibilities with four brothers. Some of his responsibilities include helping with the kitchen duty and cleaning his room clean. Dominique works in the yard and takes out the trash. Dominique also serves as a helping hand for his granddad. Dominique has been attending the 1st Baptist Church for the past few years and has been involved in Children’s Church and Sunday school. He also attends the YMCA and the Southside Youth Center.

Dominique is a 5th grader at Fain Elementary School. He says Science and Art are his favorite subjects. Dominique is a “straight A student” and serves as a lunch room helper at his school. He plans to attend college at LSU or Kansas State to work for a PHD.

As a Boys & Girls Club member for the past 4 yrs., Dominique shows his love and interests fall to the athletic side of recreation. He has participated in the indoor soccer and football programs as well as just about every gym activity you can imagine. Dominique is a regular when it comes to the weekly swimming program at the Central Branch. He has competed in the annual Optimist Tri Star Basketball and Football competitions as well as the Elk’s Hoop Shoot. Other programs he has been active in include Arts & Crafts, Club Tech, Tutoring and Power Hour, Junior Staff, and he is a peer leader!

Branch Director Charlene Vomastek said, “Dominique has been taught good old-school values and treats others the way he wants to be treated!”

Laron_Arias_2013Laron Arias
is the 14 year old son of Dwain & Amanda Arias. Laron has three sisters and seven brothers. Some of his many responsibilities include daily household and bedroom cleaning duties, kitchen chores, washing and drying dishes, and he helps with the breakfast meal preparations every day. Taking out the trash and helping with the lawn work are also part of his duties! Laron helps with daily needs of the family dog and cat in addition to lending a hand supervising younger brothers and sisters.

Laron has attended the Fountain of the Living Water Church for the past eight years. He is involved with Children’s Church and the Youth Group. Laron also volunteers to help clean the church sanctuary once every three months. He has served as a volunteer in the concession stand during Holliday’s home football games as a part of his home schooling.

Laron is home schooled and is currently working at the 9th grade level. His favorite subjects are history and English. His sport participation has included Boys & Girls Club Volleyball. He plans to pursue a four year degree at Vernon College and eventually get his master’s in Computer Science.

Laron has been a member of the Boys & Girls Club since he was old enough to join. He has been involved in the football, basketball, and soccer programs. He enjoys games room activities, especially playing pool and carpet bowling. Laron has served as a Jr. Staffer in the Gyms and enjoys the swimming program at Central.

Branch Director Ms. Smith said,“Laron is smart and outgoing with a smile that lights up any room!”

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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.