The Boys & Girs Clubs of Central Wyoming honored kids at their 24th Annual Awards & Recognition breakfast this morning at the Ford Wyoming Center.

Preliminary dollars raised through the Mission Unstoppable annual giving campaign total $942,698. All proceeds support impactful programming at the Club, according to a recent press release.

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U.S. Senator John Barrasso gave Jan and Brad Cundy a Congressional Award for the difference they have made for youth throughout the state. He said, "Brad and Jan's exemplary character and commitment to Wyoming's youth are remarkable. With this award, the Boys & Girls Clubs of Central Wyoming affirms their deepest gratitude for Brad and Jan Cundy and their continued work."

Boys and Girls Clubs of Central Wyoming
Boys and Girls Clubs of Central Wyoming
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Isabell Norris, a sophomore from Dubois K-12 School, was named Boys & Girls Clubs of Central Wyoming’s Youth of the Year. As the child of a single mother who was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis, Isabell had to learn life lessons more quickly. She credits the Boys & Girls Club with teaching her leadership and independence. Because of her love for animals, Isabell plans to become a veterinarian after graduation. She received a Central Wyoming Youth of the Year plaque, as well as $7,500 dollars from the late Ruth R. Ellbogen, who endowed the Scholarship Education Fund of the Boys & Girls Clubs of Central Wyoming Foundation. She will go on to represent the Club at the state Youth of the Year Competition in February.

Boys and Girls Clubs of Central Wyoming
Boys and Girls Clubs of Central Wyoming
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The Mick & Susie McMurry Cowboy Code Try Award, a bronze sculpture by local artist Chris Navarro, honors a person in the community who has lived the Cowboy Code to its fullest and persevered in the face of challenges. This year’s award recipient is Brad Hopkins, Executive Director of the Wyoming Rescue Mission, who has worked to change the lives of the homeless. Hopkins also received a congressional record from Senator Barrasso.

Boys and Girls Clubs of Central Wyoming
Boys and Girls Clubs of Central Wyoming
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Keynote speaker Willie Robertson, CEO of Duck Commander and Buck Commander, and formerly of the hit reality show Duck Dynasty, praised the community for not overlooking children. He entertained the audience with personal stories of entrepreneurship as a young child and highlighted the importance of faith, family, and work in his life. He encouraged those in attendance to never give up but to turn tragedy into hope, according to the release.

Boys and Girls Clubs of Central Wyoming
Boys and Girls Clubs of Central Wyoming
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Nearly 1,200 guests were in attendance, including Wyoming Governor Mark Gordon and First Lady Jennie Gordon. Guests received a copy of the new book, The Wyoming Try, which tells the stories of a dozen Wyoming individuals who have done extraordinary things despite the odds. Club CEO Ashley Bright said, “I want to thank the community for its unstoppable support of the Club’s mission in making a difference in the lives of youth. We are serving more youth than ever and helping them discover their passions, and it’s all because of you.

 

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