Salinas teen named Boys & Girls Clubs of Monterey County Youth of the Year

  • November 13, 2018
1024 628 Carrie V.

(SEASIDE, Calif.) –The Boys & Girls Clubs of Monterey County (BGCMC) is thrilled to announce the Youth of the Year recipient, Natalia Casillas.

Casillas, along with other teens, were honored during a special dinner event at Corral de Tierra Country on November 7. Seaside youth Elizabeth Aguilar was named Youth of the Year Runner Up. Casillas is a senior at North Salinas High School with a 4.03 grade point average (GPA). She’s been an active Club member for the last six years and volunteered as a Junior Staff member during the summer months. Aguilar has been a Club member for nine years and is a senior at Seaside High School. She’s also an active member for the Girls’ Health in Girls’ Hands leadership network.

The event also celebrated the contributions Vic Smith, of JV Smith Companies, has made to the Clubs over the years. He was named this year’s recipient of the BGCMC Roosevelt Williams President’s Award.

Youth of the Year recognizes outstanding Club members and exceptional teens. These members are chosen based on their active involvement with the Clubs, their passion for education, and their service as a role model to other youth. As part of the award, Casillas received a $5,000 college scholarship and Aguilar received a $2,500 scholarship. Both were also named Youth of the Year recipients for their respective Clubs, with teens Gustavo Perez named Salinas Clubhouse Runner Up and Stephanie Nava Garcia named Seaside Clubhouse Runner Up.

BGCMC thanks judges Andrea Bailey, Policy, Government and Public Affairs Representative with Chevron; Loree Dowse, Director of Creative Marketing with Mann Packing; and Linda Taylor,

Harden Foundation President and Ambassador, Special Projects at Taylor Farms. The November 7 event was made possible with the help of Mann’s Fresh Vegetables, Dole Fresh, Salinas Valley Memorial Healthcare System, Cannery Row Company, Chevron, David and Susan Gill.


About Boys & Girls Clubs of Monterey County

The Boys & Girls Clubs of Monterey County (BGCMC) has played an integral role in the community for over 50 years. BGCMC operates Clubhouses in Seaside and Salinas, providing a safe haven for over 600 children and teens a day with programs that focus on Academic Success, Healthy Lifestyles, Good Character & Leadership. Club members are offered mentoring and guidance to maintain on-grade school progression, graduate from high school, and prepare for college and careers. Nearly 90% of the total budget comes from generous individuals, corporations and foundations. The Clubs are open Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. – 6 p.m. during summer and school breaks, and from 12 p.m. to 6 p.m. when school is in session.  Additional information is available at or via phone at 831-394-5171.