Keep America Beautiful

Youth Advisory Council

Keep America Beautiful selected 10 high school students from across the country to serve on its inaugural national Youth Advisory Council (YAC). The YAC creates a framework for youth engagement with KAB, infusing the youth voice into KAB's programs and building on the model of youth leadership seen in KAB's local and state affiliates. The newly-selected YAC members will act as ambassadors and leaders for youth service in their respective communities and states.

Daphne Cornish, Davenport, IA
Daphne CornishDaphne, Senior, works closely with her school's environmental club, which works with a local organization, Living Lands and Waters. Each year, these organizations team up for “Xstream Cleanup” with Daphne leading her own team. Her group helped to remove 47,000 pounds of debris during this cleanup. Daphne is also very involved in United Neighbors, where she works as a tutor for children who do not have easy access to extracurricular activities. “The process of working with these students toward greater proficiency requires constant doggedness,” Daphen says.

Matthew Crager, Mount Joy, PA
Matthew CragerMatthew, Senior, was an active participant in the United Way's Day of Caring. He has also served as his class president for all four years of high school, as treasurer of his school’s Future Business Leaders of America Club, and as vice president for Tri-M Music Honor Society. “In any leadership role I take on, I always demonstrate my passion in the hope that others will follow suit.”

John Cuttino, Orangeburg, SC
John CuttinoJohn, Junior, has a strong passion for plants. "A beautiful, healthy plant can always put a smile on my face.” He recently participated in a Habitat for Humanity project through his church, received the “Terrific Kids Award” from his high school, and is certified as a state teen instructor for shotgun safety. Being a teen shotgun instructor exemplifies John’s maturity and capacity to guide others successfully.

Stephanie Davis, Haines City, FL
Stephanie DavisStephanie, Senior, will be vice president of the Polk State College Green Club in the fall of 2012, where she is dually-enrolled. She has participated in the Lake Germ Project and for several years has been a part of Project Eagle, which is an annual lake cleanup. “Keeping my community clean is important to me because I take pride in where I live."

Stephanie Edwards, Chatsowrth, GA
Stephanie EdwardsStephanie, Junior, is a co-founder and current president of the Keep Chatsworth-Murray Beautiful's youth volunteer group -- the Downtown Clean Team. She has worked very closely with children and young adults of all ages on environmental projects. “As an enthusiastic leader, I demonstrate to the children how much fun learning can be. My enthusiasm becomes contagious and my desire to deliver results motivates them to do the same.” Stephanie serves as her high school’s community chairman, Murray County 4-H President and has won various awards, including a Keep America Beautiful Community Improvement Award.

Michael Finnegan, Scottsdale, AZ
Michael FinneganMichael, Senior, is involved in Student Government and has held many positions at Desert Mountain High School. He is currently Student Body Vice President. Michael is also an active member of his Boy Scout Troop #648. He obtained the Eagle Scout Award, by planning and leading his troop in the removal of invasive species from a five-acre area. He has also received the Hornaday Award, which recognizes outstanding efforts in natural resource conservation and environmental protection. Michael is also involved in Scottsdale Mayor Youth Council and is committed in giving the youth a voice in his city. Michael enjoys the outdoors and takes advantage of the wonderful national parks in Arizona.

Karina Gonzalez, Downey, CA
Karina GonzalezKarina, Sophomore, participated in a community improvement project that focused on cigarette litter prevention. After realizing how many cigarettes infested her community she worked diligently to create smoke-free parks. “I am really passionate about eliminating cigarette litter in local parks and public places because cigarette litter affects the health of the community and is harmful to wildlife. She is a representative of the Downey Youth Commission as well as lead student organizer for her school’s environmental club, Kiwanis Green Team.

Elizabeth Lippman, Houston, TX
Elizabeth LippmanElizabeth, Senior, is passionate about a “greener” America, demonstrating her passion through her work with the City of Houston Mayor’s Youth Council. She serves on the executive board for this organization and participated in the creation of a sustainable urban garden at Beechnut Academy, located in a food desert. Elizabeth has taken on leadership roles when it comes to giving back.

Roshnee Raithatha, Lexington, KY
Roshnee RaithathaRoshnee, Senior, is an active member in the Bluegrass Youth Sustainability Council and will serve as student facilitator in the fall of 2012. Roshnee is also a member of the Go Green Club, the Henry Clay Student Council, serves as chairperson of service and leadership committee, and recently won the Commonwealth Ambassador Award. She is truly passionate about everything she does whether it is educational outreach, when she volunteers at Carnegie Centre for Literacy, or even choosing to use her bicycle versus driving.“To me, passion is the key to success."

David Sperber, Mendham, NJ
David SperberDavid, Senior, holds many positions in his community such as president of his high school’s environmental club, Students for Environmental Awareness, social action vice president of United Synagogue Youth, on the chapter board of National Conference of Synagogue Youth and president of his school's Jewish Student Union Chapter. He is determined and will do whatever it takes to get results.

Through the generous support of the Wrigley Company Foundation, YAC members will be able to partner with like-minded youth with unique perspectives from across the country and learn about approaches for engaging youth in community service.


For more information,
please contact:

Cecile Carson

Senior Director, Affiliate Development
Tel: 203.659.3030
Fax: 203.659.3031



Apply for the 2013-2014 KAB Youth Advisory Council.
This is a unique opportunity for ten high school students (15-18 years old) from diverse backgrounds across the nation to participate in a service-learning and leadership development program.  Applications accepted through Friday,  May 31, 2013 5:00 pm HST. Application must be submitted on-line and is available by clicking here.  You may access application to prepare to submit on-line by clicking here.