Coshocton County Youth Leadership graduates Class of 2019

| April 18, 2019

Back row from left: Noah Kobel, Carson Coffman, Jaelyn McGee, Aliya Stevens, Cale Roberts; Middle row: Kirsten Kiefner, Emma Anderson, Caleb Shriver, Andrew Martin, Nicole Schwartz, Executive Director, Betsy Gosnell; Front row: Grace Gottwalt, Lacey Richcreek, Melita Davis, Natalie Uhl, Mackenzie Carr

COSHOCTON – Coshocton County Youth Leadership had its 25th graduation ceremony for the Class of 2019 on Wednesday April 17, at the M Event Centre, located on the grounds of Coshocton KOA.

The room was filled to capacity by friends and family, which sparkled from the lights above and the energy in the air. Treated to presentations by the young philanthropists, audience members listened intently as the youth took turns at the podium to describe their Coshocton Foundation Trustee’s “Pay it Forward Project.” By the end of the presentations, many in attendance wiped tears that had formed while the youth described the personal impact the act of philanthropy had on each and every one of them.  These young leaders donated to local non-profit organizations, struggling friends and neighbors, and a young girl battling cancer. It was an emotional night filled with gratitude for the gift of a small community that repeatedly gives back to and supports its young adults.

Graduates of the Coshocton County Youth Leadership Class of 2019 include Emma Anderson, Andrew Martin, Caleb Shriver, and Aliya Stevens of River View High School; Mackenzie Carr from Coshocton Christian School and the Coshocton County Career Center; Carson Coffman, Melita Davis, Noah Kobel, Lacey Richcreek, and Natalie Uhl from Coshocton High School, as well as Kirsten Kiefner who attends the career center in addition to Coshocton High School; and Grace Gottwalt, Jaelyn McGee, Cale Roberts, and Nicole Schwartz of Ridgewood High School.

Executive Director Betsy Gosnell began the evening by welcoming guests and thanking funders for their support: The Coshocton Foundation, Dunmire Family Fund, Simpson Family Donor Advised Fund, Kiwanis Club Donor Advised Fund, and individual contributors. Mark Fortune, leadership board chair, welcomed audience members and congratulated the youth on their year of service and leadership, sharing his lessons on leadership from his father, the late Robert “Pinky” Fortune.

Distinguished guests of the event included Coshocton Mayor Steve Mercer and the Village of West Lafayette Mayor Stephen Bordenkircher as well as Jennifer Kiko from Congressman Bob Gibbs office.  Coshocton Foundation Trustee, Barb Emmons and Executive Director Bob Pell were also in attendance, along with members of the Leadership Board of Directors, Mindy Fehrman, Chair Mark Fortune, Scott Frank, Kaycee Newell, and Tiffany Swigert.

Graduating youth received their plaques from Pell, aided by Kiko, who passed out commendations from state Senator Jay Hottinger, Representative Larry Householder, Governor Mike DeWine, Senator Rob Portman, and Congressman Bob Gibbs.

Gosnell closed the evening by reminding the youth to “shine your light and make a positive impact on the world; there is nothing so honorable as helping improve the lives of others (Roy T. Bennett).”

Coshocton County Youth Leadership (CCYL) is a program of the Coshocton Foundation and was developed as a project of the Leadership Coshocton County Class of 1994. It provides a basic foundation of leadership skills for high school students to build upon and assists in the development of communication skills and presents an opportunity to interact with community leaders and fellow participants.

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Category: Clubs & Organizations

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Article contributed to The Beacon.

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