CATSKILL — The Greene County Children, Youth and Community Advisory Board announce their selections for their Youth Awards.
A description of the activities and involvement within the community for each youth nominated was submitted to the Advisory Board, portraying a caring, dedicated individual whose efforts and accomplishments should be recognized. Selecting the awardees out of the many excellent nominations was a difficult task, organizers said. However, they are confident the awards are being made to very deserving young members of the county: Justice Brantley, Catskill High School – 2019 Greene County Youth of the Year; Erwin Lampman, Cairo-Durham High School – Children, Youth & Community Advisory Board Chairman’s Choice Award; and Kareel Slager, Tech Valley High School – Greene County Department of Human Services Director’s Choice Award.
Justice Brantley is an Honor Roll student and has taken college-level courses. He received a Section 2 Scholar Athlete Award for his outstanding achievement in the classroom, community and basketball. Justice volunteers at the Catskill Soup Kitchen and also delivers meals to the elderly. He can be seen shoveling snow for the elderly and handicapped residents in the Hop-O-Nose Apartments. He serves as a reading buddy to younger children and mentors to troubled youth in the housing community, and even organized a basketball tournament at Hop-O-Nose. He volunteers with the CYO Basketball League as a coach, referee, timekeeper and practices. Justice has volunteered with Santa’s Helpers and the Walk to End Alzheimer’s Disease. He has worked summers under the Columbia Greene Workforce Program at the Catskill Community Center.
Erwin Lampman III is a member of the National Honor Society, an Honor Roll student, Student of the Month winner and has been awarded the RIT Scholarship. He is a Life Scout in Boy Scout Troop 43 and has been named to the Troop Order of the Arrow (Boys Scouts Honor Society). He volunteers at many Scout events including Color Guard in parades, the Greene County Youth Fair, various veterans’ ceremonies and collecting for local food pantries with the Scouts Food Drive. After being injured playing varsity football, he volunteered to serve as sports manager. In the summer of 2018, Erwin started his own wood-milling business (operating under the family business), selling rough-cut lumber to local customers. Over the course of the last summer, Erwin restored, cleaned and reset three Civil War veterans’ badly damaged and broken headstones. He organized a work detail of 22 people, repaired fallen stones and walls, placed flags and built a large sign to mark the Union Church Cemetery.
Kareel Slager has faced many challenges in his life. He was born in the Ukraine and raised in a hospital until age five, when he was adopted by an American family. He has faced challenges to his hearing, speaking and vision, and has undergone numerous surgeries. None of this has slowed him down. He has been an active volunteer with the Coxsackie Area Food Pantry and his presence brightens the day for all there. He is always willing to take on any task and complete it efficiently and cheerfully, inspiring others. He has volunteered with the Albany Fire Department and has taken Red Cross training. He is active with the Youth Leadership in his church, and has traveled with Hope Force International to volunteer after disasters in Texas and Puerto Rico.
Other youth receiving acknowledgement are: Cairo-Durham High School: Eugene Somers; Coxsackie-Athens High School: Aiden Boehm.
All of the youth will be honored at opening ceremonies of the Greene County Youth Fair.