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Boys & Girls Club names employee, Distinguished Club award winners

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For their dedication to serving youth and always going above and beyond to do whatever it takes for Boys & Girls Clubs of West Central Missouri members, Melanie Osteen and Ryan Willoughby have been named BGC’s part-time and full-time employees of the year. The two were honored during BGC’s annual staff and board celebration, held Oct. 2 at Red Cedars Event Barn, which also recognized other staff and board members for their efforts this year.

Osteen is the Program Manager at BGC’s newest Club Site in Dresden, which is in its third year of operation. She was previously a Youth Development Professional at the Washington Site. Her nominators noted she is, “an invaluable asset to our organization. Not only did she provide excellent leadership during the uncertainty this summer, she has also built an excellent relationship with the Pettis County R-XII School District; their school board always has compliments about the Dresden Site and the work Melanie does.”

Willoughby has been with BGC since 2013, moving from a Youth Development Professional and Program Director to his full-time role as Site Director at The CLUB, which serves fifth grade and up. Willoughby was recognized for his “passion and energy about his work that always shines through. Ryan actively listens to staff concerns and has a collaborative and encouraging leadership style that promotes positive energy at his site. Ryan is always thinking of new and creative ideas for his members while also helping the Resource Development Team with fundraising efforts and donor relations.”

“It is such an honor and privilege to work with these two individuals,” said BGC Director of Operations Tyler Hudson. “They are both natural leaders and always step up to do whatever it takes for the kids we serve. Melanie and Ryan bring a positive outlook to our organization that goes hand-in-hand with youth development.”

Other award winners during the celebration were Jimmy Longnecker, Volunteer of the Year; Sedalia School District 200 and Parkview Elementary Principal Stephanie Jackson, Community Partner of the Year; the BGC Dance-Off Battle, Fun Moment of the Year; the All-Stars Basketball League, Member Moment of the Year; BGC Staff efforts to assist Sedalia 200 with meal prep, Best Service Project of the Year; the Parkview Makerspace Program, Best Program of the Year; Director of Operations Tyler Hudson, Professional Development Award; and Special Events Director Andrea Smith, Whatever It Takes Moment of the Year. 

Two Boys & Girls Clubs of West Central Missouri Club Sites had the honor of being named a Distinguished Club Gold Award winner during BGC’s staff and board celebration. And in a special honor, both sites – the Horace Mann Site and Washington Site – are overseen by Area Director Vicki Hart, who directly oversees operations at Washington and supervises Program Director Jake Rogers who leads Horace Mann.

“It’s an honor to be named a Gold Award winner,” Hart said. “I think it comes down to the hard work our staff put in every day to have a great reputation at our schools. Parents know their children are safe, learning new things and always having fun at Club time.”

Hart also thanked Horace Mann Elementary and Washington Elementary administrators and teachers for ongoing strong partnerships.

“It makes a big difference when we have support from the schools and know we can count on each other to create the best possible environment for our members,” she said.

The Distinguished Club Award honors Club Sites and their commitment to growth and providing the highest quality programming to members. Sites are awarded points based on their performance in the areas of average daily attendance, membership, family engagement, service projects and data reporting. In order to be distinguished, the Club Site must go above and beyond in each area.

“The Distinguished Club honor recognizes Club Sites that have displayed a strong focus on deepening the impact they have on our members and their families to changes lives,” said Executive Director Gary Beckman. “All the while, reaching additional kids who need a place to belong, to find their own greatness and unleash their full potential.”

Distinguished Club Silver Award winners included The CLUB, Dresden, Heber Hunt, Leeton and Skyline Sites. Distinguished Club Bronze Award winners were Cole Camp, Green Ridge, La Monte, Parkview and Smithton Sites.

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