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Boys & Girls Clubs Celebrate with National Chapter

Boys & Girls Clubs of America (BGCA) honored Club members and Club alum at their annual Great Futures Gala Nov. 3, at the Beverly Wilshire Hotel, Beverly Hills. Boys & Girls Clubs of America Trustees Steve Mosko and Eric Shanks, President, COO and Executive Producer of FOX Sports co-chaired the annual event which has been held in Los Angeles for more than 26 years. Actor, comedian Jay Mohr emceed.

news-boysngirls111816dThe more than 400 guests were treated to a moving performance by classical pianist Chloe Flower who was joined on stage by Club members Mya from the Boys & Girls Clubs of Garden Grove and Miguel from the Boys & Girls Clubs of Coachella Valley.

The evening’s host, actor and comedian Jay Mohr introduced the 2015 National Youth of the Year, Whitney S. Whitney took the audience on a personal journey of what happens inside a Boys & Girls Club. “Each day nearly half a million kids walk through the doors of a Boys & Girls Club,“ said Whitney. “Clubs support kids and teens at every level, especially where help is needed most. Youth also connect with caring mentors and youth development professionals who are life-changers for Club members. They help kids and teens find stability and enable them to achieve a great future.”

A highlight of the evening was a special performance by four talented teens from the new Lyricism 101 program which encourages Club members to raise their voice and express themselves about issues that matter to them. The program focuses on the art of freestyling and teens are coached by hip-hop artists and entertainment professionals.

Jim Clark, president and CEO of BGCA, thanked the Club member performers, co-chairs Steve Mosko and Eric Shanks, the gala committee and sponsors for their time and efforts in support of the nearly 4 million kids and teens who enter Club doors each year, changing their lives forever. “Boys & Girls Clubs are redefining youth development through three core values. We believe through academic success, good character and citizenship and healthy lifestyles, we are setting our nation’s youth on the path to success. Our strategy has already shown incredible outcomes and we can’t wait to see what the future brings as we expand our commitment to America’s kids and teens for generations to come.”

The 2016 National Youth of the Year Jocelyn W. gave a moving firsthand account of how her Boys & Girls Club inspired and motivated her to become the successful college freshman she is today. The National Youth of the Year title is the highest honor a Club member can receive.

Keynote speaker and Club alumnus of the Boys & Girls Club of Buena Park was award-winning director and producer Justin Lin. Lin’s films have grossed more than $2 billion worldwide and is best known for his work on The Fast and the Furious 3-6, Star Trek Beyond and Better Luck Tomorrow. He is also known for his work on television shows Community and True Detective. Lin credits Boys & Girls Clubs for changing his life and creating an opportunity for him to dream big and succeed.

FOX NFL Insider and Commentator Jay Glazer and former soccer player and current soccer analyst for FS1, Eric Wynalda conducted a live auction creating a bidding frenzy for an Up Close and Personal with FOX NFL Sunday coveted football experience and a four-night all-inclusive ultimate getaway on a private island in Fiji at the Villa Vatu.

 

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