The Westfield Area YMCA, in collaboration with the Fanwood-Scotch Plains YMCA and Plainfield YMCA will host the 21st Annual Achievers Banquet on Friday, June 7, from 7 p.m. – 11 p.m. at The Westwood, 438 North Ave. in Garwood.

The evening will include a cocktail hour with live musical performances by students; dinner and dancing; an art auction and tricky tray.  The tricky tray features over 20 items including offerings from Lord & Taylor, Plainfield Symphony, Kidoolo, Somerset Patriots and NY Broadway Tours. 

At the banquet, graduating high school seniors, Achievers alumni and Connell Company scholarship recipients will be recognized with certificates distributed by Assemblywoman Linda Carter.

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This year’s event features speakers and artists are:

Keynote Speaker Tobias Truvillion is best known as an actor on In Contempt and Empire. He is also a film producer, philanthropist, inner-city youth mentor, advocate and arts instructor.

Banquet Guest Artist John Stanisci is a Marvel/DC Comic illustrator who will auction his work to benefit the Achievers program.  John has been a professional illustrator for over 18 years working for all the major comic book publishers drawing characters such as Spider Man, Batman, Catwoman, Superman and The Hulk.

Positive Peer Pressure Speaker Dean A. Scott is a co-founder of Cocoa Mocha Kids, an online social media resource page that reviews products for children of color. Ten-year-old Dean and mom Tasha are also the creators of The Mia London “Perfectly Perfect Pajama” Collection, the first pajama collection for children of color.

Proceeds of the 21st Annual Banquet will benefit the Achievers Program. To attend or support, please visit www.westfieldynj.org/programs/leadership-development or the Westfield Area YMCA Welcome Center at 220 Clark St. in Westfield.  Ad Journal or vendor table submissions are due by May 31.  Individual or table tickets must be purchased by June 3.

The Westfield Area YMCA Achievers began 21 years ago as part of a national program focusing on college readiness, career development, leadership, life skills and mentoring for diverse high school students from Union County.

The goal is to raise the academic standards of young people, expose students to diverse career options and inspire them to reach their goals. Achievers also participate in community service activities, celebrate their history, culture and traditions, receive college prep tutoring and essay assistance. This program is available at little or no cost to participants.

For inquiries about the banquet or how to otherwise support these leaders of tomorrow, please contact Janice A. Carthens at 908-301-YMCA (9622) ext. 227, jcarthens@westfieldynj.org or Nadya Lawrence at 908-301-YMCA (9622) ext. 280, nlawrence@westfieldynj.org.