The Boys & Girls Clubs of Fresno County named its Youth of the Year on Thursday – an award given to someone who embodies the values of leadership and service, academic excellence and a healthy lifestyle.
Cristo J. Villaverde, 18, of the east Fresno Boys & Girls Clubs is Youth of the Year. He won a $500 Target gift card provided by Me-n-Ed’s Pizzeria, a $3,000 scholarship through the A. Thomas Ferdinandi Sr. & Jimmy DeMera Founders Scholarship Program and a $300 scholarship from Valley Iron Inc.
We all worked really hard, and it could’ve easily gone to any one of us.
Cristo J. Villaverde, Youth of the Year
“I can honestly say that it’s a huge honor,” Villaverde said. “We all worked really hard, and it could’ve easily gone to any one of us, and I’m blessed to have come out on top. I’m the Keystone Council president, and as my time at the club will end when I turn 19, I’m still going to volunteer my time whenever I can.”
The second-place winner, Luis Vasquez Reyes, took home a $250 Target gift card courtesy of Me-n-Ed’s and a $300 scholarship from Valley Iron.
The third-place winner, Catlyn Rose Bloomer, won a $300 scholarship from Valley Iron.
All three won free pizza for a year from Me-n-Ed’s and a recognition plaque.
“Me-n-Ed’s is once again proud to sponsor the Boy & Girls Clubs’ Youth of the Year award ceremony,” Tom Ferdinandi said. “Our company’s history of working with the young people in our community is truly realized through the efforts of organizations such as this.”
Villaverde will have the opportunity to proceed to the state, regional and national levels of the Youth of the Year competition, the Boys & Girls Clubs said. In the past, Tupperware Brands has served as the national sponsor and awarded each state’s winner a $1,000 college scholarship and each regional winner a $10,000 scholarship.