On her application for the annual Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Memphis Youth of the Year Competition, LaStacia Cloyd began with this: “Every loss is just an inch towards greatness.”
A junior at Central High School, Cloyd has been selected as the BGCM Youth of the Year. She has attended the John Dustin Buckman Boys & Girls Club for the past five years.
“I absolutely love being at the Club every day, we are all one big family,” Cloyd said. “The staff at Buckman not only encourage the members to never give up but they also encourage us to achieve our goals no matter how small they are.
“The Buckman Boys & Girls Club is more than a Club to me, I consider it to be more of a home filled with caring adults and some of my closest friends. It has opened doors for me, doors that would have remained closed and for that I am truly grateful.”
Youth of the Year is the highest award available in the Boys & Girls Clubs organization. Cloyd was among five who competed in interviews on January 31. The categories were My Club Experience, My Vision for America’s Youth, and My Personal Brand. Community leaders representing branches of industry and philanthropy evaluated the students based on the categories, poise and public speaking ability.
The presenting sponsor was HigherVisibility, a Memphis-area digital marketing firm.
At Central, Cloyd excels in AP classes while being a member of the wrestling team. She plans to attend Middle Tennessee State University upon her graduation in 2020.
Active in community volunteer projects, she enjoys mentoring and being a positive role model for the younger members at her Club. Judges complimented her tenacity and confidence.
The Boys & Girls Clubs Youth of the Year Contest is designed to select a student who exemplifies the mission of the organization. The winner serves as a spokesperson. Each club representative received a gift and recognition certificate.
2019 Youth of the Year Contestants:
– Jaylan Sims, senior, White Station High School; the Sycamore View Club;
– Aaliyah Gunn, freshman, Soulsville Charter School; Bernal E. Smith Sr. Club;
– Miracle Diggs, senior, Memphis Academy of Health Sciences; the Ira Samelson Jr. Club;
– Patricia Noel, junior, Oakhaven High School; the Oakhaven Club;
– LaStacia Cloyd, junior, Central High School; John Dustin Buckman Club.