The 28 members of the Youth Council pose with Gov. Deval Patrick at the State House.
BOSTON — Berkshires students were among those sworn in by Gov. Deval Patrick as new members of the Governor's Statewide Youth Council.
Crystal Haynes of Williamstown and Chris Darroch of Dalton met with 26 other youth selected to serve two years on the council, representing the state's 14 counties. Twenty-eight alternates were also sworn in, including Joseph Grochmal of Housatonic and Molly Dimise of Pittsfield.
Patrick established the council by an executive order in April 2008 to encourage young people to become civically engaged in their local communities and help tackle the state's biggest challenges, including education reform, youth violence and anti-bullying, by assuming leadership roles.
"The progress Youth Council members have made over the past several years is remarkable, and I am confident that this amazing group of young people will carry on that tradition and leave the commonwealth stronger for the next generation," said the governor.
This is the third council. Members were selected by an application review committee for their excellence in leadership and their outstanding potential to create change in their communities. Members range from ages 14 to 20.
The council holds bi-monthly sessions and will advise the governor as representatives of Massachusetts youth. Youth Council members also gather independently to share what they see in their communities and talk about how state government can partner with local communities to create solutions. The first two classes of the Youth Council worked with the administration to advocate for the passage of several important policy issues, including the governor's 2010 anti-bullying legislation.
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