LCDR, USN (Ret)
As Deputy Director, I help run and oversee the best kept secret in our state, which is the Virginia Commonwealth ChalleNGe Youth Academy located at Camp Pendleton, Virginia.
And I am truly blessed to be in this position to have a positive impact on the lives of the teenagers that volunteer to be here to make a change in their lives.
I also am the unofficial photographer and take pictures, with the assistance of other staff members, of the cadets during the residential phase and post those pictures to our Facebook site.
Interaction with the parents, family members, mentors, guardians, graduates on Facebook, telephone and in person is also a task that I enjoy here. Translating and interpreting for the Spanish speaking parents and cadets is also something that I enjoy.
Finally, awarding up to $1,500 in scholarships to our graduating cadets that continue their education in college or trade school is one of the best things we do for the cadets. These scholarships are awarded through the Parent’s Association.
I always look forward to graduation where I can shake the cadet’s hand and tell them how proud the ChalleNGe staff and I are of their accomplishment. Seeing how proud the parents, guardians, families and friends are of their cadet’s performance during the residential phase and on graduation, makes me happy to be a part of this organization. I am extremely proud of every cadet that has been through ChalleNGe and those cadets that are enrolled in ChalleNGe and those that are thinking of enrolling into ChalleNGe.
Thanks to the parents and guardians that entrust their teenagers into our hands. Go ChalleNGe!