Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Oxnard and Port Hueneme

Meet our 2016 Youth of the Year candidates

Posted in Uncategorized by BGCOP Staff on March 2, 2016

2016 YOY 01.1

Meet our 2016 Youth of the Year candidates

2016 YOY Candidates (left to right): Cristian Vasquez, Joanna Garcia, Liliana Galeana, Cody Bowen (teen staff), Glenda Guzman, Fatima Perez and Jesus Peña.

Cristian Vasquez

17-year old Cristian is a senior at Channel Islands High School. After graduation he plans on attending Ventura College with a focus in Graphic Design. A member of the Club for seven years, Cristian has been very active in many aspects of the Club and is currently in the Keystone Leadership Program.


“The Club has provided countless opportunities for me to become a better person by enhancing my academic, personal, and leadership skills and helping me gain a positive outlook on life,” said Cristian.


Cristian has taken AP English classes all four years of high school and is on his school’s track and field team. He is also currently trying to obtain a seal of bi-literacy.

Joanna Garcia

Joanna, 18, is a senior at Rio Mesa High School and wants to attend Johns Hopkins University so she can become a pediatrician. Joanna has been a Club member for 10 years. She has been involved with the Club’s Keystone Leadership program for the last three years. In the Keystone group, she held a bone marrow drive for her uncle after he was diagnosed with Leukemia.


“[The Club] has helped mold me to the person I am today. I am very honored and grateful for the many great opportunities that will help me towards my future as a productive member to society and my community,” said Joanna.

Joanna plays softball, basketball, and is on the cross country and track and field teams at her school. She is currently enrolled in an after school course to become a medical assistant.


Liliana Galeana

A Club member for two years, 17-year-old Liliana attends Vista Real Charter High School. After graduation, she plans on studying criminal justice at Ventura College.


“I am eternally grateful for what the Club has done for me and my family. I don’t know where I would be if I had never come across [the Club]. My whole life has been influenced in a positive way. The Boys & Girls Club made me learn more about myself and my qualities. I am thankful to be part of such an incredible non-profit organization,” said Liliana.

At the Club, Liliana joined the Boxing program and Keystone Leadership program. She’s also taken part in the National Fine Arts program and been named Youth of the month twice.

Fatima Perez

Fatima is 16 years old and attends Hueneme High School. Her dream is to attend UCLA after graduation. Fatima has been a Club member since she was in fourth grade. She has been very involved with many programs available at the Club, including Imagemakers, College Bound, Keystone, Smart Girls, National Fine Arts and the Cooking program.


“The Boys & Girls Club has helped me in many aspects of my life,” said Fatima, “such as helping me with academics, having a different perspective in life, and has taught me to never give up even if a situation is difficult.”


A sophomore, Fatima has a 4.14 GPA, has taken honor and AP classes at her school and plays tennis. With the Club, she has participated in beach clean-ups, blanket/food drives and helped plan a dance for teens with severe handicaps.

Jesus Peña

A Club member for nine years, 15-year old Jesus, loves coming to the Club and its Teen Center, where he gets help with his homework and unwinds by playing basketball and ping pong. A member of Keystone, Jesus has participated in many community service events like the blanket drive, Day for Kids and Give a Smile. He has also been named “Youth of the Month” by the Club twice.


“The experiences I have had here have shaped me into the proud human being I am today,” said Jesus.

Jesus attends Rio Mesa High School and after graduation hopes to study architectural engineering at UC Irvine. He has been involved with AVID and made his school’s honor roll.



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