While donating her time to organizations in Cortland, Lacie Carmon became a person on whom others could rely.
It was that time that earned Carmon, 17, a junior at Cortland High School, the 2017 Youth of the Year Award by Cortland Area Communities that Care. During the award ceremony, she had no idea her name would be called, and when it was, she was shocked. “I was speechless,” Carmon said. “This is such an honor.”
Carmon volunteered at the Cortland Free Library, working with the Teen Advisory Board and the summer reading program; interned at the Cortland Youth Center; and volunteered at the Cortland Community SPCA.
While at the library Saturday, Carmon said she started volunteering after spending time there about midway through eighth-grade. It was at that time she got into reading. Her favorite book, or to say books, are the Divergent Series, Carmon said.
For several years Carmon has been a regular at the Cortland Youth Center, said Matt Marcey, youth service specialist at the Youth Bureau and Carmon’s internship supervisor. “She has solid character,” Marcey said.
Not long into the internship, Marcey learned Carmon was donating part of her paychecks to charities. “It’s a pretty remarkable trait,” Marcey said.
“It’s just money,” Carmon said. “I could make more.”
Carmon said she thought it would be best to donate the money to a worthwhile cause.
“Lacie is an utterly selfless individual,” Marcey wrote in his nomination for Carmon. “Among her peers, Lacie is a calming presence who is considerate and supportive, even with other kids she is not acquainted with.”
The best compliment Carmon said she has gotten from kids she has worked with is she is both kid-friendly and very fun.
While Carmon won the award others were up for nominations. They included:
* Bailey Badshaw, a senior at Cortland High School, involved in many programs, including National Honor Society and student council.
* Kyle Brame, a senior at Cortland Alternative High School, a volunteer peer tutor, teacher assistant, and peer leader.
* John Henry Brown, a senior at Homer High School, spends time volunteering at the Center for the Arts of Homer.
* Morgan Clayman, a senior at Homer High School, is a teen tech volunteer at Phillips Free Library and helps people learn how to use forms of technology. She also helped lead the library’s youth programs.
* Rachel Coombs, a junior at McGraw High School, volunteers for the McGraw Community Food Pantry, the Cortland YMCA, and the American Legion Veteran’s Day Dinner.
* Heather Decker, a freshman at Seven Valleys New Tech Academy, is a part of Venture Scouts where she learned cardiopulmonary resuscitation and first aid. Decker is also a member of her school’s art club and LGBTQ club.
* Noah Kilmer, a senior at Homer High School, is active at the Phillips Free Library, where he helped found the teen writers’ group, book club and film making club. He also volunteers at the Cortland Regional Medical Center and is a board member at the Cortland County Youth Bureau.
* Emily Lehman, a junior at Marathon High School, is part of the Cortland County Youth Leadership. She worked volunteer jobs at the Cornell Cooperative Extension of Cortland County, helped provide veterans with blankets and volunteered at the Athletic Booster Club.
* Cody Metcalf, a senior at Cincinnatus High School, volunteers for the Cortland Regional Medical Center and plays taps for the American Legion.
* Tiffany Miner, a senior at Marathon High School, has worked to give blankets to veterans, provided baby-sitting for parent workshops, helped set up pow-wows, and has worked at the Central New York Maple Festival.
* Paige Potter, a senior at Cortland High School, referees youth basketball tournaments, coaches girl’s lacrosse, and helps plan and host “Senior Citizen’s Day.” She was a member of the varsity basketball, field hockey and lacrosse teams.
* William Rogers, a sophomore at the Seven Valleys New Tech Academy, is active in Scouting, through which he has helped run community service events like cleanups at Lime Hollow Nature Center. He has volunteered for the CNY spay and neuter clinic and has done lawn maintenance for the YMCA.
* Nicholas Ryan, a freshman at the Seven Valleys New Tech Academy, has volunteered in hospitals, nursing homes and in adult day-care programs. He also provides technical support for his church.
* Sam Turck, a sophomore at the Seven Valleys New Tech Academy, is a volunteer at the Cortland Regional Medical Center and volunteered in the free health-care week program by the military last summer.
* Natalie Thomas, a junior at Marathon High School, volunteers with the teenage volunteer program at Cortland Regional Medical Center.
* Ana Chavez Villaion, a senior at Cortland High School, has volunteered at the library, the Cortland Running Club, and is a member of the indoor and outdoor track team. As a foreign exchange student, Anna also helps students who speak English as a second language.
* Kimberly White, a senior at Marathon High School, has helped run and organize both the Marathon Pee-Wee Cross Country Program and the Marathon Pee-Wee Track and Field Program.