2012 BrooklineHub.com Youth of the Year, Catherine Marris accepting award from publisher, Harvey Bravman

2012 BrooklineHub.com Youth of the Year, Catherine Marris accepting award from publisher, Harvey Bravman

The 2nd Annual BrooklineHub.com Youth Awards was a night with many highlights including a performance by flamenco guitarist, Juanito Pascual, an inspiring speech by Joe Kennedy III and a surprise video appearance by Theo Epstein with a message of support for his brother Paul and the Brookline Teen Center.   Most memorable were the stories of Brookline teens making an impact on the world around them.  From the sixteen Youth Award and twenty Recognition Award winners, BHS student, Catherine Marris, was named as 2012 Youth of the Year.

While there were many deserving teens under consideration for the honor, the Nomination Committee found the range and depth of Marris’ involvement in community service organizations, leadership and academic drive particularly noteworthy.  Praise for her compassionate, kind nature appeared repeatedly in the nomination forms and was icing on the cake.
To call this young woman a powerhouse is really an understatement. Marris is involved in a number of social justice issues through such organizations as the Brookline Literacy Partnership (of which she serves as co-chair with BHS Junior Ben Hoff), BHS American Red Cross Club (where she serves as president), Junior/Senior Mentor Program and the Cambridge-based Sub/Urban Justice Organization.  By participating in the Brookline Community Foundation Youth Grant Committee and taking social organizing classes at The City School of Boston, Marris actively works to hone skills critical to the organizations in which she is involved.

This was particularly true of her work the the Brookline Literacy Partnership.  With her as co-chair, the group achieved record membership, funding and suppport.  She helped establish their Tutoring program and served as Tutoring Director for the 2012/2011 school year.

Her efforts have not gone unnoticed.  In March of this year, she was awarded a Presidential Volunteer Service award for work. She has also been recognized with the 2012 Prudential Community Foundation Local Honoree, 2011 Brookline Human Relations Commission Youth Leadership Award, 2011 Frederick Douglass and Susan B. Anthony Award.

In looking forward, Marris, in a video interview prepared for the Youth Awards event, expressed a desire to continue her work with non-profits.   We are all better off for her dedication and hard work.

By Catie Hayes, Editor