A Look Back at the 2018 Hall of Fame Celebration
By Erin Meyer
Wow! The 2018 Hall of Fame Celebration was a night many of us will remember for a very long time. Being in a room with close to 300 others who love and care about YR was incredible! I’m not sure it’s possible to give adequate thanks to every student, parent, volunteer, committee member, board member, sponsor, staff member and supporter who made the Hall of Fame a success.
So many of you helped plan, set up, tear down, execute, and fund (and the list goes on) an event we LOVE. We love it because it brings our YR family together. We love it because it lets us welcome new people into that family. And we love it because at the Hall of Fame, we can truly celebrate the folks who make YR what it is. “Thank you” doesn’t begin to convey our gratitude to everyone involved with this amazing night, but we sure do mean it.
Though we filled the Woodward Hospitality Center at St. Ben’s, we know there were many others who would have loved to join us. So, we wanted to offer this recap of what was shared about each of the night’s award winners. You can see all of the photos from the Hall of Fame here!
Youths of the Year – Michael and Mary Schiff (Memorial High School)
“Community service is at the heart of all that we do at Youth Resources. No pair of students reflects this type of service mentality more than Michael and Mary Schiff. Both of these students are seniors at Memorial this year and were the August Youth of Month recipients.
Mary is active with Memorial’s Theatre Program in various musicals and plays. She also takes on various leadership roles at school clubs and serves at a soup kitchen in downtown Evansville. Michael is a Boy Scout and member of BSA Troop 312 and has served in numerous leadership positions while a scout. His Eagle Scout Project this past summer was a 600-stone walking path rebuild at Memorial High School that students and staff use daily.
Both Mary and Michael are in National Honor Society. At Youth Resources, we have had the honor to have them share their leadership talents with us in both TEENPOWER camps and Teen Advisory Council. They are also active in their faith community and both have been servers at the 7:30 a.m. Mass [at Holy Rosary] nearly every Sunday since middle school.
To quote these two students: ‘It’s really good to get involved with the community and a good way to give back to the community that built me,’ said Michael. ‘High school is right now, but service will be forever,’ Mary said.” –Jessica Fehrenbacher, YR Make a Difference Grants Program Coordinator
Outstanding Alumna – Julie Bowman (Director of Programming, College Mentors for Kids)
“Julie is an incredible leader, friend and champion for young people. She brings fresh perspective, honesty and a genuine heart to everything she does, but especially her relationships with students – our students at YR and the students at College Mentors for Kids, where she has worked since 2012 and is Director of Programming. Everyone in Julie’s life is fortunate to learn from her compassion and tenacity for making lives better. Julie journeys from Indianapolis to Evansville to volunteer with YR in our Fall Festival booth and continues to spend a week of her summer as a TEENPOWER Adult Staff member. We couldn’t ask for a stronger advocate or friend.” – Laura Ferguson, YR Executive Director
Outstanding Alumnus – Jeremy Brown (former YR staff member)
“The winner of the Outstanding Male Alumni this year is someone who is embodies the definition of a servant leader! Throughout my years of being involved with Youth Resources and TEENPOWER, I had many great experiences, life-changing moments and friendships. I feel so fortunate that I can call tonight’s winner a friend of mine. He is someone I always strove to emulate and learn from. He is not one to brag about himself, but I have seen firsthand how he has served the TEENPOWER campers by listening to their stories, encouraging them, and just being a great friend.” – David Theby, YR alumus
Outstanding Volunteers – Ray and Trisha Dudlo (Stoll Keenon Ogden and Bingham Greenebaum Doll)
“For over five years, Ray and Trisha Dudlo have spent many a Monday evening, after their work day is done, volunteering with YR’s Vanderburgh County Teen Court program as adult attorney mentors. Ray and Trish are great advocates for Teen Court. Ray sat on a panel that met with the Women’s Fund grant committee and helped us win a $35,000 impact grant for Teen Court. Trisha continues to keep us connected to the Evansville Bar Association through our participation on the Diversity Committee, which she chairs, where we work together to encourage young students in their law pursuits.
Ray and Trish are the first people we go to for advice, guidance, questions and support because providing opportunity, creating relationships and developing servant leaders is at the very core of who they are.” – Laura Ferguson, YR Executive Director
Robert “Scooter” Tiemann Servant Leader Award winner– Claudia Duncan (Mater Dei High School)
“When Mater Dei senior Claudia Duncan enters a room, that room becomes more joyful. She has been involved with Youth Resources for four years, as a regular Teen Court volunteer and arguably one of the best bailiffs we’ve ever had, as a Teen Advisory Council Executive Committee member and as a TEENPOWER Youth Staff member. Claudia is always asking how she can help, what she can do better, who she can mentor, and she is always surprised when the effortless and genuine way in which she connects causes people to remember her, return to a program because of her and change their lives because of her. Her humility is so deeply rooted, and she just doesn’t know how awesome she is.” – Laura Ferguson, YR Executive Director
Robert “Scooter” Tiemann Servant Leader Award winner – Braden Herendeen
“North senior Braden Herendeen is the most innately and genuinely kind young man that I know. He feels deeply, loves hard and is a loyal, selfless friend. In all the ways that Scooter quietly led, supported and mentored, Braden does the same. He is the definition of a servant leader, and he makes me proud to know him. Braden seems shy, but he’s really expressive when you get to know him. What you discover is that Braden is quiet because he is constantly observing, looking for ways to help, looking for people who just need someone. Braden is the friend we all hope to have and be, just as Scooter was to so many of us.” –Laura Ferguson, YR Executive Director
Nancy Sieben Koehler Scholarship recipient – Alicynn Delancy (Mt. Vernon High School)
“Mt. Vernon senior Alicynn Delancy embodies perseverance, positivity and commitment. She has been involved with Youth Resources for so many years, it feels like she’s our home more than we are hers. Her involvement in TAC, Teen Court and TEENPOWER is intrinsic to who she is, and she has influenced so many lives through her commitment to a substance-free lifestyle and to loving others well.” – Laura Ferguson, YR Executive Director
Nancy Sieben Koehler Scholarship recipient – Adam Gunderloy (Indiana University High School)
“Adam Gunderloy has raised the bar in so many ways within the Vanderburgh County Teen Court program. He started volunteering recently, but has made a huge impact on the level of discourse at our weekly hearings, and he models for students and adults alike a well of compassion that he generously uses to advocate for the first-time juvenile offenders who come into the Teen Court program. It has been inspiring to watch Adam grow in his confidence and skills within the courtroom while finishing high school in a self-paced program and working. His commitment to the rights of citizens, to justice, and to learning are unwavering, just like Nancy, which is why he is so deserving of this scholarship.” – Laura Ferguson, YR Executive Director
Outstanding Male Senior – Kristian Lockyear (Signature School)
“Beyond his incredible capacity to create, invent and explore tough problems, Signature School senior Kristian Lockyear is a delight to be around, a role model for his peers and one of the kindest, most respectful students I know. In most students I see gradual growth over the years that I know them; Kristian has sprinted forward in just the past four years as he stepped into roles as a TEENPOWER Youth Staff member and Teen Advisory Council Executive Committee member. He has become more observant and aware, more diligent and focused, more self-assured and more concerned about others than ever before. His humility and work ethic is unmatched.
Kristian is loving, loyal, empathetic and really funny. He never fails to make my day when he stops in the office, and he will continue to change the world for the better for the rest of his life.” -Laura Ferguson, YR Executive Director
Outstanding Female Senior – Annie David (Memorial High School)
“Everything Memorial senior Annie David does seems effortless, but I know from spending years getting to know her, that everything she does is carefully considered. She journeys through life with the utmost care, always aware of how the world is affecting the people around her and first at bat to support, love and advocate for you. Annie is selfless, kind, creative and a bright, bright light in our community and YR family.
She has been involved with TEENPOWER since she was in middle school and now serves on Youth Staff. She got involved in the Teen Advisory Council once she started high school. She comes from a legacy of YR participants in both of her sisters Emily and Maria, but she has made her experience her own and given more to the YR family and wider community than we could ever give to her.” –Laura Ferguson, YR Executive Director