Brianna Martinez Named Boy and Girls Club Youth of the Year

Brianna Martinez is a Junior at Peoria High School where she plays softball and serves as the secretary of her Jobs for Arizona Graduates class. Brianna is involved in many other extracurricular activities with her local Boys and Girls Club as well. At her club she serves as the Vice President of the Keystone program. Keystone is a leadership and service program similar to the National Honor Society. Brianna is also the Peoria Boys and Girls Clubs Youth of The Year.

Being Youth of the Year will give Brianna opportunities in major fundraising events and will give her the opportunity to share her story in front of hundreds of people. Brianna can always be seen with a positive attitude and smile on her face. Brianna maintains above average grades and all these other activities while holding down a steady job at Wendy’s. Brianna is an inspiration to those around her and is a leader of whatever she is a part of.

You serve as the Vice President for the Keystone Program, what is that and what duties do you have?

As the Vice President for Keystone, I am the go to person when the President is not present. I also help plan many of the events we do, for example, myself and a former keystone member planned out a social awareness dance, we searched for a speaker who has gone through a rough path growing up and who wanted to attempt self­harm. Our goal for the event was to inform teens that they are not alone in any situation, that they can come and talk to us about anything. As Vice President my duties include attending and planning club meetings and assisting the President in any way possible.

You also were named “Youth of the Year.” How do you feel about that? What does that entail?

When I found out that I was Youth of the Year I was so nervous because I knew I had to speak in front of a bunch of people, but then I realized how this is such an amazing honor and opportunity to be Youth of the Year. The journey is the best part, I have already met so many great people that I know I will stay in touch with throughout the journey and even when the journey is over. I am so excited to be able to tell my story and to let people know how I grew up and how I have overcome so many things in my life. Although I am still nervous I know I can get through it with the company of the other youths.

What other extracurricular activities do you enjoy?

My favorite thing to do is play sports, sports to me is life. I have played softball since I was 12 and I am still playing, I cannot imagine life without sports because it gives me an outlet from all of my stress and frustrations. I also enjoy working, which most people find it crazy, but I enjoy it. I work at Wendy’s and ever since I started, I loved it. I love the fact that I can now help my mom with paying bills and whatever we need around the house. Writing is one of my other favorites; writing is my way of getting things off my chest, it is also a way of keeping me positive.

How do you stay so positive?

My positivity starts with my mindset. Since I was little I have been through a lot of things that have kept me down in spirits. Those days were not always the best. Now, I think of how I have become a young lady through all of the things I’ve been through. My mom has always told me “tomorrow is another day, and another chance to do things different and better, and everything happens for a reason.” Those words stick with me every day. My mom is what also keeps me positive; I want to make her happy in any way possible so I try my hardest to stay up in spirits when I am with her. I no longer get down on things that won’t affect me in 10 years, it may hurt now, but I will get over it and it will no longer hurt me like it did if I stay down on something so small it will keep me from doing what I have to do to go far in my future.

What advice would you give to someone to help them succeed in life?

No matter how old you are, where you come from, or what you do for a living, you can do what you put your mind too. It is important to learn how to balance your life because you don’t want to overload yourself with so many different things all at once. You cannot be afraid to fail. There are going to be some times where you might mess up or the things you want happen don’t go your way, but you have to keep going, do not stop because you failed. Last, you have to believe in yourself. Through your journey stay positive and think about all the bright and exciting things that will come out of all the struggles and hard work you put into your success.

What are your plans for the future?

I am going to attend NAU to major in Sociology and become a social worker, a school psychologist or a case manager. The thought of me being able to help someone in any shape or form is so heart­filling. I can save so many lives by listening to them or helping them get out of a horrible situation. I can teach someone how to stay positive or I can be their friend. Knowing that I helped out as much as I can is the best thing in life to me. I know it will be tough, but I know I can do it and I know I will.

Brianna is a junior at Peoria Highschool.



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