2017 Rocky Mountain Youth Leadership Conference
The 2017 Rocky Mountain Youth Leadership Conference was held July 25-30, 2017 at CSU Pueblo. Ninety-three attendees from 31 different Front Range and other high schools were in attendance. See photos of the attendees in their color groups below.
2017 Conference Awards Winners
The following attendees received conference awards:
- Madden Award/Honor Graduate Connor Witt, Lewis Palmer HS
- Dexter and Jo Ann Peak Essay Award – Faith Heery, Saint Mary HS
- Robert Meier Award (Respect & Responsibility) – Adrian Barrera, Adams City HS
- Gen. Ben Bellis Award (Creativity & Judgment) – Isaac Savoy, Liberty HS
- John Runningen Award (Ambition & Work Ethic) – Sarah Neeley, Cheyenne Mountain HS
- Alfred Champion Award (Persistence & Reason) – Cameron Waldron, Lewis Palmer HS
- James Coakley Award (Dedication & Patriotism) – Jessie Fehrenbach, Sand Creek HS
- Rebecca Reynolds Award (Self Discipline & Selflessness) – Mallory Nesmith, Lewis Palmer HS
- Harold Shear Award (Caring & Vision) – Hunter Haskins, Cheyenne Mountain HS
- David Clayton Award (Grace & Humility) – Victor Rosas, Cheyenne Mountain HS
- Mary Bower Award (Honesty & Inspiration) – Jayla Camacho, Fountain Fort Carson HS
Comments from Conference attendees:
- “I delighted in listening to the variety of speakers, meeting new people, working with a great team to complete challenges, …and lowering the American flag as the color guard. Thank you for this spectacular adventure; I am extremely grateful for all the hard work your organization has done for us.”
- “The entire experience was amazing. I met new and different kinds of people from all over Colorado, listened to great speakers, and learned how to be a better Samaritan. I absolutely recommend this for future students and leaders today and I hope future generations will enjoy the conference as much as I did.”
- “RMYLC has been the best experience that I have ever encountered in a leadership conference. My life, and where I am at today with school has been because of my love for this conference. I attended RMYLC in 2011 as a student, and little did I know that my ability to be vulnerable and speak truthfully would lead to the gracious honor of being given the honor graduate status. I was given the Colonel Hal Shear Scholar award for Care and Vision. This honor has opened so many doors for me by not only graduating top of my class in 2012 from Palmer High School, but I received a full ride scholarship for that same care and vision to the University of Denver as a Daniel’s Fund Scholar. RMYLC has forever since changed my life, and I owe my life to the success it brings to each and every student like myself. Dreams truly do come true.”
- “Thank you so much for providing a scholarship for me. I learned a lot about economics and a free enterprise economy. Also, I have seen my leadership skills progress due to the variety of speakers that have spoken here. I especially enjoyed the flag ceremonies and hearing stories about the brave men and women who make me proud to be an American.“
- “I can speak on the behalf of all of us by saying that [the RMYLC] conference was a life changing opportunity. With all of the leadership skills I’ve learned and all the friendships that I made, I feel confident that I could lead the JROTC, band, and everything else to the best of my abilities.”
- “RMYLC is the second leadership service conference I have attended this summer. After completion of both, this camp has far surpassed the expensive international conference I attended earlier. Here I was able to grow as a leader through actual situations. The lack of distractions and the focus on character-building made this camp a true success. This has overall been a great experience and has allowed me to grow greatly.”
- “RMYLC gave me the opportunity to learn long-term decision-making skills with the various lectures and team-building activities, an opportunity I devoured. I do know that the life-changing experience RMYLC provided will not only prove useful but powerful in my future as a leader.”
- “RMYLC was a chance to broaden my leadership skills… Everyone got the chance to learn. [All involved in the conference] are leaders I want to follow and …. are my heroes. Thank you all for this conference and expanding my leadership skills.”
Winning Conference Essay on Leadership:
Stop, close your eyes, imagine a smooth locomotive. Hear the strident whistle and the soft purring of the engine. Smell the coal, burning from within. This fine machine operates only because every part and every one crewing it work together seamlessly. Somewhere a strong conductor leads the crew but who makes that crew efficient? A good leader demonstrates an ability to explain the mission clearly and is able to make tough decisions when others cannot.
Communication is key. Communications can unlock the gate to greatness or be the sole factor leading to failure. A good leader needs to pass on information, goals, and priorities clearly so that confusion does not lead to error. This clarity is extremely important in areas of great risk such as a war zone, an emergency room, or a domestic terror situation. If one fails to deliver a clear message, the whole group may be compromised.
People crack under pressure and suddenly lose their ability to think. A good leader needs to be the one to make solid decisions. Their followers will look to leaders to be a constant to which they can cling. If a leader cannot make the right decisions promptly, everything can fall apart. These decisions are a test of right judgment and leaders must be steadfast and ready to face the worst.
No matter what the situation, a good leader must fulfill these two traits to ensure the safety of those they lead. The train will never leave the station if the conductor cannot act on these ideals.
— Faith Heery