NASHVILLE, TN (TN Tribune) – Selected among several outstanding youth, Jehlin H. was named the Youth of the Year by Boys & Girls Clubs of Middle Tennessee. Now in its 74th year, 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 living a healthy lifestyle.
“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,” said Eric Higgs, President & CEO, Boys & Girls Clubs of Middle Tennessee. “Jehlin was nominated for his commitment to academic success, leadership, and being a role model to his peers. He is an incredible Club member, and we are so proud of him. Jehlin is a shining example that great futures start at the Boys & Girls Clubs.”
Jehlin is currently a junior at Nashville Big Picture High School in Nashville, TN, where he serves on Student Council, the Black Student Union, Student Ambassadors, and he has been nominated for Homecoming Prince. Jehlin is also a drummer, singer, baseball player, and part of the media club at school. After high school, he plans to attend Clark-Atlanta University in Atlanta, Georgia to study Landscape Architecture and Music.
Jehlin has been a Club member since he was just four years old. He is passionate about helping his community, from serving meals to families in need after the devastating 2020 tornadoes to proposing a park before the Nashville Civic Design Committee as a young ambassador, as well as serving as emcee at our Great Futures Gala in 2020, 2019, and 2018. Jehlin was also named one of Nashville’s Top 20 Under 20 by My Brother’s Keeper, an initiative of the Obama Foundation. “My favorite Club moment was being able to host the galas, and being able to be different while younger building Legos daily in my own space created by Ms. LaQuinta.”
The Youth of the Year Program is a leadership development program that celebrates the remarkable lives of Boys & Girls Clubs of Middle Tennessee members who have distinguished themselves by rising above challenging circumstances. Finalists are chosen from their Club locations based on moral character, community involvement, academic achievements, and obstacles that they have overcome. During the selection process, youth will tell their stories to Club friends and supporters. One teen finalist will be selected as the winner. The newly named Youth of the Year will next compete against other Boys & Girls Clubs members across Tennessee for the state title. State winners move on to vie for the distinction of one of five regional winners across the country, and ultimately those five winners will contend for the title, National Youth of the Year. The judging criterion for each event consists of public speaking, one-on-one interview, service to Club and community, and academic achievement.