[Warrenton, OR—July 6, 2019] The Young Marines Alumni Association always looks forward to its participation at the National Leadership Academy and this year was no different.
This year’s leadership academy adult volunteer staff boasted six Young Marines alumni, including the Advanced Leadership School Director, Mr. Walter Oliff (YMAA). Alumni Association Advisor Mr. Christopher Chinchilla (Quartz Hill, CA) was the Junior Leadership School Director and Alumni Association staff member Ms. Beth Reichow (1st Fla. Regiment) was a school logistics coordinator. In addition, Alumni Devin Lewis (Lewis & Clark, WA) spent a day at the academy instructing Young Marines on the shooting range. Finally, the academy was supported by Headquarters Young Marines staff, which boasts three alumni. Many of these alumni spent two weeks on Camp Rilea in Northwest Oregon training Young Marines.
In addition, a contingency of Alumni Association advisors traveled to the academy to participate in some of the closing activities. On Friday, June 5. 2019, alumni gave classes to Advanced Leadership School students on life skills including time management and resume building. They also held an open-discussion panel where alumni and students talked about life after the Young Marines.
On Saturday, July 6, 2019, the Alumni Association Executive Director, Jason D. Asbill, Esq., joined the entire leadership academy on their motivational run to the Oregon shoreline of the Pacific Ocean. There, he participated in the retirement ceremony of two Young Marines. “A special part of this position for me is to personally welcome retiring Young Marines to the Alumni Association,” said Asbill. “The two young men who retired today have spent years in the Young Marines. It’s exciting for me to let them know that they’ll always be part of this program as Alumni!”
Finally, the Young Marines Alumni Association presented its annual National Leadership Academy awards at the graduation ceremonies. “What is different about these awards,” says Asbill, “is that they are peer-voted. Students within each school voted on whom the most connected, engaging, and inspiring leaders are within their class. What an extreme honor to be recognized by your peers!”
This year’s recipients of the leadership academy Alumni awards were: ALS Inspire Award, YM/GySgt Walter Patten; SLS Engage Award, YM/Sgt Blayne Benoit (2nd Alumni Award); JLS Connect Award, YM/Cpl Nathan Wilson.
About the Young Marines Alumni Association
The Young Marines Alumni Association is a subsidiary organization of the Young Marines national youth organization whose purpose is to connect former Young Marines back to the program, continue the camaraderie they enjoyed as youth, and inspire future generations of Young Marines. The Alumni Association is open to any former Young Marine who discharged from the program in good standing, regardless of age or time in program. For more information, visit our website at: https://www.youngmarinesalumni.org.
About the Young Marines
The Young Marines is a national non-profit 501c (3) youth education and service program for boys and girls, age eight through the completion of high school. The Young Marines promotes the mental, moral and physical development of its members. The program focuses on teaching the values of leadership, teamwork and self-discipline, so its members can live and promote a healthy, drug-free lifestyle.
Since the Young Marines' humble beginnings in 1959 with one unit and a handful of boys, the organization has grown to over 264 units with 8,500 youth and 2,500 adult volunteers in 40 states, the District of Columbia, Japan and affiliates in a host of other countries.