Selected among three outstanding youth, Nicklaus Charles-Crowl has been named the Youth of the Year by Boys & Girls Clubs of Manatee County. The Youth of the Year title is a prestigious honor bestowed upon an exemplary young person in recognition of leadership, service, academic excellence and dedication to live a healthy lifestyle. Now in its 70th year, the Youth of the Year program honors our nation’s most awe-inspiring young people on their path to great futures and encourages all kids to lead, succeed and inspire. Nicklaus, a senior at Bayshore High School, will now vie for the Florida Youth of the Year title and a $5,000 college scholarship from Boys & Girls Clubs of America.

Now 18 years old, Nicklaus has been a Club member since he was six. At the age of 8, Nicklaus and his family were in a car accident that took the life of his mother and brother, Christopher (9 yrs old). Nicklaus recalls the support the Club gave him through that very difficult time. “They helped my family with whatever they needed and still do today,” he said.

“I have seen Nicklaus grow and thrive in the teen program, ‘The CLUB,’ and serve as an inspiration to those that he serves at the Club, at school, on his basketball team and in the community,” said Leann Frink, Club Director of the DeSoto Boys & Girls Club. “His commitment to being a humble leader is infectious.”

Nicklaus says, “My purpose in life is to bring light to the eyes of those who look up to me and to be an example to those that I come in contact with. I know that my life was spared for a reason. I know that I am here to impact my family, friends, teammates and community in a positive way.”

If Nicklaus wins at the state competition, he will compete for the title of Southeast Region Youth of the Year and an additional $10,000 college scholarship, renewable for four years up to $40,000. Five regional winners will advance to Washington, D.C. in September 2017, to compete for the title of Boys & Girls Clubs of America’s National Youth of the Year. The National Youth of the Year will receive an additional scholarship of $25,000, renewable each year up to $100,000 and will have the opportunity to meet with the President of the United States in the White House.

Nicklaus will be attending Wisconsin Lutheran College in the fall, where he will study sport and exercise science and business while playing football and running track for the Warriors.

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